David Brady seeks hometown glory in Sligo

Irish Golfer

David Brady is looking for home comforts this weekend in the Flogas Irish Men's Amateur Open Championship. Photo: David Lloyd / Golffile.

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West of Ireland runner-up and local hopeful David Brady will look to go one better when the Flogas Irish Men’s Amateur Open Championship gets underway at County Sligo Golf Club tomorrow morning.

There are 138 of the best Irish and international amateur stars teeing it up at Rosses’ Point looking to add their name to an illustrious list of former winners, with Fionn Dobbin (Malone), Simon Austin (Murhof) and Jake Foley (Elm Park) teeing off first at 7am.

Reigning champion John Gough has turned professional since his victory at The Island last year and that paves the way for a new winner while 2022 champion Colm Campbell (Warrenpoint) looks to reclaim his crown.

Bridgestone Order of Merit joint-leader Keith Egan (Carton House) has form on this course after he took home the West of Ireland title just five weeks ago. Fellow pace-setter Paul Coughlan (Castleknock) won the Munster Men’s Amateur in Cork last weekend and Seán Keeling (Roganstown) was the recent Flogas Irish Boys’ Amateur Open champion.

But Straffan clubman Brady is one of the leading contenders from Sligo, and with course knowledge and a recent second-placed finish in the West of Ireland, he will have plenty of confidence coming into this week.

“I haven’t played it for number of years so looking forward to it and try enjoy it as much as I can because a month ago I wasn’t in the field and now I am, so it will be good to play in it especially playing at home as well in Rosses’ this year,” said Brady.

“Obviously it’s a fantastic field, it gets a lot of guys from the UK and abroad, there’s a few South Africans there as well. It’s just cool to be able to compete against the top amateurs around the place”.

There is a strong group of international players making the trip to the west coast of Ireland, with South Africa’s exciting youngster Daniel Bennett (Silver Lakes Golf & Wildlife Estate) one of those looking to emulate his fellow countryman Louis Oosthuizen’s victory in 2002.

Brady will get his first round underway at 10.23am alongside Michael Roche (Harpenden Common) and Benjamin Oberholzer (Clandeboye) with a big home crowd expected to cheer on the 27-year-old to another strong performance, something that he found really helped to raise his game in April.

“I fed off the crowd a wee bit because I didn’t feel physically tired or anything from the week but probably more mentally tired which you don’t really realise. The crowd really helped with finding a bit of extra energy,” said Brady.

All four members of the victorious Irish European Nations Cup team will tee it up this weekend too with Jack Hearn (Tramore), Matt McClean (Malone), Hugh Foley (Royal Dublin) and Keeling all looking to continue their fine start to the season.

And with a strong mix of youth, experience and top-class talent making their way to Sligo, Brady is remaining positive when it comes to the outcome.

“I know I proved it there at Easter that I have the game to compete but I’m not really putting myself under too much pressure, if it happens it happens, if not I’ll still enjoy it either way”.


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