Irish women and girls make strong start at European Team Championships

Ronan MacNamara

Ireland Girls Team in France

Ireland lie in fourth place after the opening day at the European Ladies Team Championships in Finland with Beth Coulter and Jessica Ross impressing.

The Girls in Green are a combined seven-under total, thirteen shots behind runaway leaders Sweden after the first round of strokeplay qualifying.

Naoimh Quigg’s charges are in a strong position to make the flight A bracket after 36 holes on Wednesday at Tawest Golf and Country Club.


The top eight teams from each event will qualify for the Flight A bracket and fight for medals on the three match play days starting Thursday.

Kirkistown Castle golfer Coulter backed up her European call up for the Patsy Hankins Trophy with a three-under 69 that included four birdies in her last six holes as she closed with three in a row.

She lies in a share of ninth place alongside fellow Ulsterwoman Jessica Ross (Clandeboye) who carded three birdies and fifteen pars as the 28-year-old mid-amateur made her first Irish appearance since 2019.

Elm Park’s Anna Foster is a shot further back in 17th after an opening 70 while Irish Close champion Sara Byrne (Douglas) is even par after an opening 72.

Late call up Mairead Martin of Kanturk is plus one while Kate Lanigan is seven-over.

Meanwhile in France, the Irish Girls have also made a decent start to their European Team Championship campaign and currently occupy the eighth and final qualifying spot for flight A after a combined total of +15 370 with Marina Joyce Moreno and Emma Fleming impressing with one-over 72s.

Junior Vagliano star Kate Dillon is a shot further back while Olivia Costello is plus five.

In the Men’s Championship, Niall MacSweeney’s side have work to do to make the top-8 after an eight-under 352 left them in tenth place, just one shot off Switzerland in 8th.

Debutant Max Kennedy (Royal Dublin) and Brabazon Trophy champion Liam Nolan (Galway) are the best of the Irish on three-under-par and five shots off Tiger Christensen at Royal Waterloo GC Belgium.

Kennedy had an electric start with four birdies in five holes while Nolan eagled the par-5 18th.

Kilkenny’s Mark Power birdied three of his last four holes to post a one-under 71 to lie alongside Dundalk’s Caolan Rafferty.

US Mid-Amateur champion Matthew McClean shares 63rd on level-par with Alex Magurie on six-over.

The Irish Boys have five shots to make up on 8th place Italy on Wednesday if they are to make flight A with Douglas starlet Jack Murphy just three shots off the leading qualifier on one-under-par.

Scoring HERE

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