McElhinney triumphs at The Shire

McElhinney triumphs at The Shire

May 9th, 2008

Brian McElhinney held his nerve to win The Sureshot Classic PGA EuroPro Tour event at The Shire London by one shot.

The Irishman started three under after two rounds and made up quick ground with three birdies on the front nine. An eagle on 15 looked to wrap it up for him at eight under, but a bogey on 17 had the nerves jangling down the last. But he stroked a 30-foot putt to within a foot of the pin and sunk that to par the last and pick up £10,000.

“I played well all week,” said McElhinney – who won with scores of 72, 69 and 68 (209). “It’s a nice feeling to finish with a good round like that. I was never sure of winning it as there are some tough holes down the back. But I got off to a great start with three birdies and even after bogeying the tenth I got back on track on 11 and then eagled 13.

“To be honest the only bad shot I played was when I put it in the water at 17, but my up and down for bogey was good, as was the big putt on the last.”

For a while it looked like we were heading for consecutive play-offs as Aran Wainwright (DP Publicity) was seven under going down the last. But a repeat of the Wensum Valley cliffhanger of last week was sadly not to be as he dumped his approach in the water behind the green to drop to six under.

Alan Murray (Team Ireland) broke the course record with a fantastic final round of eight under – the second time in the tournament the record went after Philip Beever shot seven under in the opening round.
“It was nice to shoot a good number after a big one yesterday,” said Murray, who shot six over in his second round. “There wasn’t much wind for us which helped but I bogeyed the third so I had to be patient and keep it together.”

The trio of players tied for second a stroke behind McElhinney was completed by Scotland’s Barry Hume who will rue his opening round one over after second and final rounds of four and three under respectively – they pick up £2733 each.

Fifth place was shared by Jack Doherty (Picture Financial), Sean Doherty (Bury) and James Ruebotham (Welwyn Garden City GC) at five under. Back-to-back bogeys on 17 and 18 scuppered Graeme Brown’s (Golf Fit Ltd/Dalmahoy) chances, dropping him back to four under after four consecutive birdies from the eighth put him in a very strong position. First round hero Beever joined him in joint eighth position after a solid final round of one under, with Anthony Tarchetti (Littlestone) bouncing back from bogeys on the first and fourth to sink seven birdies in a round of five under – also four under for the tournament.

The Tour moves on to Collingtree Park in Northampton next week for the third event this year.

Date Posted: 09/05/08

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