Smith and Murray win Irish Senior Close titles in Thurles

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Deirdre Smith and Pat Murray, Women and Men Champioships at the Irish Senior Women and Men Amateur Close Championship Final at Thurles Golf Club Picture - Brendan Gleeson

Pat Murray and Deirdre Smith are the 2022 Irish Senior Men’s and Women’s Amateur Close champions. Both players added their first Senior close titles to the Men’s and Women’s Closes they won in  2009 and 2004 respectively.

50-year-old Murray defeated Mount Juliet’s John Reynolds 4&2 to win the title on home soil. Now based in Tramore, the Tipperary native was delighted to win the title at the first time of asking, at a club where he is an Honorary Member.

“It’s brilliant. To have the simple local knowledge around the golf course, and to know on certain holes that a ball, that an odd ball can bounce here or there. It was great to have that.

“Enniscrone [2009 win] was a long time ago. To follow it about a few years later with the South of Ireland was great too. I’ve been waiting my turn for Seniors’ golf.”

After coming up short in last year’s Final, Deirdre Smith added her name to the Women’s Senior Close roll of honour defeating 2014 champion Laura Webb 4&3 in the Final.

“I played my best golf of the week in the Final”, Smith said after her win. “I was a bit slow in the first two days. I found something yesterday afternoon in my swing and brought it into today.

Smith took the lead on the third, and only lost one hole in the final, winning on the 15th green.

“I grew in confidence when the shots came. I knew I had to play really well to beat Laura because she is a really good player. It’s not often you play your best golf in the Final but I’m delighted I did.

Ann Moynihan-Rudden won the Plate in the Senior Women’s Close. Despite being 2-down at the turn, a brilliant back nine saw the Killarney golfer defeat Castletroy’s Shirley Real 2&1.

Irish Senior Women’s Amateur Close Championship
Semi-Finals
Tracy Eakin lost to Laura Webb 19th hole
Deirdre Smith beat Sheena McElroy 3&2

Final
Laura Webb lost to Deirdre Smith 4&3

Irish Senior Men’s Amateur Close Championship
Semi-Finals
Karl Bornemann lost to John Reynolds 1 hole
Pat Murray beat John O’Brien 3&2

Final
John Reynolds lost to Pat Murray 4&2

Irish Senior Women’s Amateur Close Championship – Plate
Semi-Finals
Paula Murray lost to Ann Moynihan-Rudden 1 hole
Catherine Reilly lost to Shirley Real 6&4

Final
Ann Moynihan-Rudden beat Shirley Real 2&1

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