There was double joy for Ireland as Mount Juliet’s Luke Donnelly and Old Conna’s Neil O’Briain advanced to the Second Stage of European Tour Qualifying School in Bristol.
The pair progressed with ease in the end but it was a week that started ominously for 21-year-old Donnelly who was five-over-par after just two holes on day one.
However Donnelly refused to let up on his Main Tour ambitions and bounced back with a remarkable course record 62 on day three before getting over the line with a four-over 74 yesterday. That secured a tie for third spot on The Players Club leaderboard, a wonderful performance given his start.
As for O’Briain, last year’s Sunshine Tour Rookie of the Year also returned a 74 in the final round but he was comfortably inside the mark in sixth spot on two-under-par.
In-all, 21 players advanced at five-over or better, and unfortunately that spelled the end for North West’s Brian McElhinney (+9) and Headfort’s Joe Dillon (+12).
Meanwhile at Fleesensee in Germany, there was no joy for Ireland’s competing duo of Glasson’s Colm Moriarty and Evolve Golf’s Michael McGeady. The former fell two shots short of the 15 who advanced despite a rousing three birdies to finish in his 69 while McGeady was two strokes further adrift after posting a 71.