Roscommon teen Olivia Costello is looking to keep her impressive season trending in the right direction and have another successful week at the Irish Girls’ Amateur Close.
Monkstown Golf Club hosts this year’s Irish Boys’ and Girls’ Amateur Close. 143 players have headed to Cork where they will play a 36-hole qualifier over the first two days. The top-16 players in each championship qualify for the matchplay with the next best 16 set to compete in the Plate.
Costello brings plenty of momentum into the week coming off the back of an undefeated Junior Vagliano Trophy and two wins earlier in the season at the Scottish Girls’ Open and the Flogas Irish Girls’ Amateur Open.
The 15-year-old will focus on what she can control and look to play her best golf on the big stage again.
“It has given me confidence, although I did win them, I still have a lot to improve on and a lot of learning to do but I’ll bring that into the rest of my season and then just the few things I’ve learned, try to improve on them as well,” said Costello.
“I would like to do well in it. I’m not really going to think about the actual tournament itself. At the moment, I’m working on a few things in my golf so I’ll just go out and try and do those things to the best of my ability and then whatever happens, happens.”
The Roscommon golfer tees off alongside Irish teammate Katie Poots (Knock) at 8.30am, and Monkstown is a new challenge for Costello as she sets out in qualifying to make the matchplay stages.
“I haven’t played it before. I’ll play the practice round, probably have two practice rounds, normally that’s what I do. I’ll make my strategy from there. I’ll take it one step at a time. The first thing will be to make the matchplay and then it’s just about taking it as it comes,“ said Costello.
In the Boys’ competition, Jack Murphy (Douglas) will also feel confident heading into that tournament coming off the back of his win at the Munster Boys’ Amateur Open championship at Tipperary last week.
“I’m happy with my game but the Close, only 16 make the cut and now everyone is done with exams, it’s going to be a full field so that will be a tight enough cut to make,” said Murphy (17).
“I haven’t played Monkstown a lot in the last two years, when I was younger I used to play there a bit more but the last two years I have been traveling so much that you don’t really have chances to just head away and play.”
The Douglas golfer will hope to bring the experience he has gained this year into the event and he will tee it up at 1.40pm alongside Aodhagan Brady (Co Sligo) and John Doyle (Fota Island).
“It’s been good so far, I’m working on it with my mental game as I’ve kind of struggled a bit with finishing off tournaments when I’m in contention, kind of just gifted away shots,” said Murphy.
“But I’m happy with a lot of the season. I’ve played in more Men’s events and more Men’s international events so this year I’m throwing myself in there to see what I can do and a lot of it was just experience.
“I’m quite happy with how it’s going so far.”