Local boy Murphy leads Connacht Strokeplay

Ronan MacNamara

San Murphy (Portumna) driving at the 15th tee in the second round of the 2020 Irish Boys Under 18 Amateur Close Championship at Thurles Golf Club today (11/08/2020). Picture by Pat Cashman

Hometown golfer Sam Murphy said he has taken the lessons from last week in the East through to the Connacht Stroke Play where he is the leader on -10 after two rounds on his home course.

Portumna provided the perfect backdrop and the 20-year-old used all of his experience to card rounds of 68 and 66 to take the halfway lead.

Last week Murphy performed heroics to reach a play-off at the East of Ireland, only to lose out to Alex Maguire in the end. And he said he is using that experience after battling it out with Caolan Rafferty too in Baltray.


“It was nice to go head-to-head against the two boys,” said Murphy.

“You definitely learn a lot when you lose. Last week was really good. Did a lot for my confidence. When you are competing against them two it’s really good and competing in one of the big championships is nice.”

Murphy was also the leader after Round 1 in Portumna, one shot clear of Kevin Robinson (Castlewarden), Jack Murphy (Douglas) and Donnacha Cleary (Tipperary).

Four birdies in the first eight holes put Murphy in the ascendency and despite a bogey on the 14th, another birdie on the penultimate hole helped him to card -4 in Round 1.

Cleary maintained his push in the afternoon, he finished on -5, while Jack McDonnell (Forrest Little) produced a 69 to move into solo third on -4.

But it was Murphy who really excelled, his clean scorecard was impressive with six birdies dotted throughout, including on seven, eight and nine, as he took a big five shot lead into tomorrow.

“It was a bit scrappy now. When I made the turn it was a bit scrappy from one until seven. I made a nice putt on seven and then managed to put together a few nice swings coming home and made a few birdies,” said Murphy.

“I made a lot of nice putts. I haven’t really been working too much on it, they’re home greens, they’re always really good, you know the breaks. Get it on line and it should go in.”


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