Headfort Golf Club Kells
Headfort Golf Club Kells
Headfort Golf Club Kells
Headfort Golf Club Kells
Posted on 26 Sept. 2016

AIG Challenge Cup All-Ireland Final Win for Headfort!

There were euphoric scenes at Dundalk Golf Club on Saturday afternoon when Headfort ladies team claimed the highest accolade by defeating Ballybunion 41/2 - 1/2 in the final of the AIG Challenge Cup.


Because the Leinster region was split into two the Kells team were drawn to play a quarter-final match on Thursday against Co. Sligo and duly won the five singles match competition by 3-2. On Friday they went on to defeat Wexford Golf Club by 41/2 to ½.


And so the stage was set on Saturday for the final against Ballybunion – who defeated Co. Armagh in their ‘semi’. Headfort team manager Marie Magee with her assistant Helen Stafford sent their team into battle with only one outcome in mind.


Striking first for Headfort was Oonagh Clarke who was consistent throughtout the championship. Clarke won the first four holes straight up against Anne-Marie Hickey before losing holes five and six but from there on she dominated her match and finished up winning 5-up with four to play.


Susan Reilly followed up with a top class finish on the par-4 15th hole against Margaret McAuliffe when she caused cheers to be heard around the course by chipping in from 25 metres to end her match and put Headfort 2-0.


At this stage Headfort were totally dominant in all three remaining matches. In match three Mary Bowler played solidly throughout. Mary put the pressure on early winning holes four and five to go 2-up and kept up the momentum to lead 4-up walking off the 11th. She lost the 12th and 13th to her opposition, Eva Clancy’s astute play but struck back immediately with a win on 14 and a half on the 15th leaving her 3-up with three to play.


In the meantime Ita Cribbin in match 4 was also getting stronger as the round progressed and sank a 25-ft putt from off the green at the 12th to secure a half and stay 2 up. The anchor match involved Kells’ Patricia Tyrrell and Ballybunion’s Tess Noonan. The Headfort girl was 1 down after three holes but won the fourth and took off from there to outplay her opponent completely and was 4-up at the turn.


At this stage it was a case of where the winning putt was going to be and the excitement amont the throng of Headfort supporters was increasing. As it turned out it was on the par-5 16th hole where Mary Bowler putted from 4 feet to win the competition outright and start the celebrations.


Meanwhile back on the 13th in the final match Tyrrell sank a magnificent 20-ft uphill putt from right to left to secure her win 6/5 and Ita Cribbin was 1-up on Dorrie Cotter in match 4 when it was ‘called-in’ and deemed a half each.


The Headfort team manager, Marie Magee, said the “determination, enthusiasm and pure team spirit was what won for this team today.” The campaign started out in April and consisted of nine matches in which a panel of players was wisely used. This ended a 42-year wait for the Meath club to earn a second Green pennant – in 1974 Niamh Daly and Peg McCann won the All-Ireland Daily Mail foursomes.


Headfort panel: Marie Magee (Manager), Helen Stafford (Asst. Manager), Oonagh Clarke, Susan Reilly, Mary Bowler, Ita Cribbin, Patricia Tyrrell, Kathleen Curtis, Mary Davis, Miriam Skelly, Christine Foley.

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