Leading qualifier Martin safely through at Irish Women’s Close

Bernie McGuire
Bernie McGuire

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Leading qualifier Mairead Martin (Kanturk) is safely through to the last 16 at the Irish Women’s Close Championship at Mullingar.

Martin faced 2017 Munster Women’s Champion Paula Walsh (Doneraile) in the first round and got off to a good start, winning 3 of the first 6 holes. Walsh steadied the match but the deficit was too much for her to fight back and the game finished on the 16th green, 3&2 to Martin.

Maria Dunne (Skerries), Ariana Coyle Diez (Elm Park) and Mary Dowling (New Ross) are also through to the last 16, while Ciara Casey (Hermitage) did battle with Anna Dawson (Tramore) which came to ultimatum in favour of the Dubliner on the 15th when Casey produced a short game masterclass over the closing few holes. Fourteen-year-old Dawson, sister of Men’s International Robin Dawson, was delighted to make her first cut at the Irish Women’s Close, “I really enjoyed this morning’s match, I was 2up after 8 but Ciara got up and down so many times on the last few holes and that was hard to beat! I am looking forward now to competing in the Plate matches.”

Junior Vagliano Trophy team member Sara Byrne (Douglas), and girls’ Internationals Valerie Clancy (Killarney) and Rachel Thompson (Cork) will also compete in tomorrow’s last 16 matches. While Paula Grant (Lisburn) and Niamh McSherry (Lurgan) also safely negotiated their first-round matchups.

Paula Grant, who came up against her good friend and college mate Roisin Brady (Co. Louth) spoke about how it wasn’t their first encounter; “I think we’ve played each other 3 times in the last 4 Irish Close’s, which is funny!” When speaking about her successful week at the British Ladies Amateur she was adamant that it wouldn’t be a once off good week. “Last week was great, it gave me the confidence that I can compete with the best and while I lost out to Leona in the quarter finals you really can’t be disappointed when she goes on to win it out! Finishing third was a good start in the qualifiers yesterday and I am just going to keep doing what I am doing over the weekend.”

Those who were beaten in this morning’s matches will no progress to the Plate flight and compete for the Ita Wallace Trophy and the two flights of matchplay will continue until Sunday afternoon when the Championship and Plate winners will be crowned.

First Round Results
Mairead Martin (Kanturk) beat Paula Walsh (Doneraile) 3&2
Maria Dunne (Skerries) beat Clodagh Walsh (Castlewarden/MU) 4&3
Ariana Coyle Diez (Elm Park) beat Chloe Ryan (Castletory /UCD) 4&3
Mary Dowling (New Ross) beat Louise Coffey (Malone) 6&5
Ciara Casey (Hermitage) beat Anna Dawson (Tramore) 4&3
Sara Byrne (Douglas) beat Alice Hutchinson (St. Anne’s) 2&1
Shannon Burke (Ballinrobe/MU) lost to Valerie Clancy (Killarney) 3&1
Aine Donegan (Woodstock) lost to Eleanor Metcalfe (Laytown & Bettystown) 22nd
Sarah Cunningham (Ennis) beat Emma Forbes (Royal Portrush) 2&1
Meadhbh Doyle (Portarlington/MU) lost to Maeve Cummins (Lurgan) 4&3
Lauren Walsh (Castlewarden) lost to Rachel Thompson (Cork) 2&1
Niamh McSherry (Lurgan) beat Kate Dwyer (Rossmore) 3&2
Paula Grant (Lisburn) beat Roisin Brady (Co. Louth) 5&4
Beth Coulter (Kirkistown Castle) lost to Orla Dunphy (Kilkenny) 3&1
Sinead Sexton (Lahinch) beat Kate Lanigan (Hermitage) 19th
Lisa O’Shea (Shannon) beat Aoife Lowry (Tipperary)19th

Championship Last 16 (24.06.17)
08:30 Mairead Martin (Kanturk) vs. Maria Dunne (Skerries)
08:39 Ariana Coyle Diez (Elm Park) vs. Mary Dowling (New Ross)
08:48 Ciara Casey (Hermitage) vs. Sara Byrne (Douglas)
08:57 Valerie Clancy (Killarney) vs. Eleanor Metcalfe (Laytown & Bettystown)
09:06 Sarah Cunningham (Ennis) vs. Maeve Cummins (Lurgan)
09:15 Rachel Thompson (Cork) vs. Niamh McSherry (Lurgan)
09:24 Paula Grant (Lisburn) vs. Orla Dunphy (Kilkenny)
09:33 Sinead Sexton (Lahinch) vs. Lisa O’Shea (Shannon)

Plate Last 16 (24.06.17)
09:42 Paula Walsh (Doneraile) vs. Clodagh Walsh (Castlewarden/MU)
09:51 Chloe Ryan (Castletroy) vs. Louise Coffey (Malone)
10:00 Anna Dawson (Tramore) vs. Alice Hutchinson (St. Anne’s)
10:09 Shannon Burke (Ballinrobe/MU) vs. Aine Donegan (Woodstock)
10:18 Emma Forbes (Royal Portrush) vs. Meadhbh Doyle (Portarlington/MU)
10:27 Lauren Walsh (Castlewarden) vs. Kate Dwyer (Rossmore)
10:36 Roisin Brady (Co. Louth) vs. Beth Coulter (Kirkistown Castle)
10:45 Kate Lanigan (Hermitage) vs. Aoife Lowry (Tipperary)

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