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Monday, September 28, 2020

Portmarnock Links to host 2020 Dubai Duty Free Irish Open qualifier

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This year’s €40,000 Dubai Duty Free Irish Open qualifier will be staged at the impressive Portmarnock Links on May 23 and 24.

The winner will collect €6000 with the leading four players earning coveted starting places in the $7,000,000 Dubai Duty Free Irish Open field at Mount Juliet (May 28-31).

PGA in Ireland Regional Manager, Michael McCumiskey said; “The DDF Irish Open qualifier gives PGA professionals, established tournament pros and emerging talent a great chance to secure a spot in one of the premier events on the European Tour.

“The PGA in Ireland is delighted to be staging the event at Portmarnock Links and want to thank the entire team there for their on-going support. The links will be very familiar to many of the PGA professionals as it provides the stage for one of the PGA in Ireland’s biggest Pro-Ams sponsored by Paul McKenna and Mac Interiors.”

The Bernhard Langer/Stan Eby designed course has played host to numerous professional and amateur events including the 2008 and 2009 Ladies Irish Open.

Director of Golf, Conor Russell, said; “We are thrilled to be hosting this year’s DDF Irish Open Qualifier at Portmarnock Links.

“Our Championship course is very popular amongst Ireland’s leading professionals and elite amateurs, always presenting a challenge. This opportunity will give our team a good understanding of tournament organisation and prepare them for future Irish Opens down the line.

“The course has wintered exceptionally well and we look forward to welcoming all the players to the links in May.”

All PGA in Ireland members and registered assistants will be eligible to compete in the event. Six places in the field are open to amateur players nominated by the Golfing Union of Ireland. A further 12 spots will be filled by professional golfers selected by the European Tour.

Last year, Brian Casey played some superb golf at Moyvalley Hotel and Golf Resort to top qualifying and claim a place in the DDF Irish Open field at Lahinch.

The Headfort professional grabbed the lead on day one with an opening-round 66 (-6) and then added a composed 69 (-3) over the final 18 holes to collect the €6000 first prize and that coveted starting spot in Lahinch.

He was joined in Lahinch by fellow qualifiers, Paul McBride (The Island) and Conor O’Rourke (Naas GC) and Michael McGeady (Evolve Golf Coaching).

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Rising Pitch

It's not only membership at 9 and 18 hole courses that's bloomed this year, Pitch & Putt is on the rise too. Kevin Markham looks at the game’s shortest form*