​Vorster storms to East win as O’Hanlon settles for second at Baltray

Winner Martin Vorster (South Africa) with The d Hotel sponsored East of Ireland Championship trophy after his victory at County Louth Golf Club. Picture by Pat Cashman

South Africa’s Martin Vorster fired his second successive 67 to put his opposition to the sword at the East of Ireland Championship sponsored by The d Hotel at County Louth Golf Club.

The 17-year old played his final 36 holes in a sensational 10-under par at Baltray to win by four strokes from the 2016 champion, Paul O’Hanlon on nine-under par. He’s the second overseas winner of the East of Ireland following on from friend and compatriot, Christo Lamprecht’s victory in 2018.

“It’s an unbelievable feeling to get my first [senior] international win so soon, it’s a really great feeling, I’m just out of words. My goal for today was to chase, I knew I was going to have to,” said the current Junior Open champion.

“The wind was bad but not too bad, it was manageable so I knew I was going to have consistent rounds to be able to get the job done and thankfully it all worked out.”

Vorster was imperious on Monday, firing eleven birdies and just the one bogey in an incredible run of scoring that has whetted the teenager’s appetite for what’s to come this season.

“It’s a great start to a new beginning just to be able to push through. It’s a different type of pressure and I think it’s going to help me and make it easier the next time.”

Four shots back was runner-up, O’Hanlon with the Carton House star pleased with his week’s work despite coming up against a juggernaut out in front.

“I think the weather conditions today it was a big advantage knowing the golf course the way I did. I didn’t make too many mental errors and when I got to five-under I thought it would be a pretty good score and maybe have a chance but when I got to the 16th and saw that he [Vorster] had got to nine-under, that was that.”

Colm Campbell picked up another haul of Bridgestone Order of Merit points with a third place podium finish. Naas man Robert Brazill (-2) and Douglas’ Peter O’Keeffe (-1) completed the top-5 and were the only other players to break par for the week.

Full Scoring HERE