Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 30 August 2014

Des Smyth hails pal Christy O'Connor for help in landing title

Des Smyth revealed that old friends are best after swooping for his fourth victory on the European Seniors Tour with a final round 65 at the Royal Haagsche Golf and Country Club yesterday.

Smyth paid tribute to Christy O'Connor Jnr for a swing tip which helped him land the €37,500 winner's cheque at the Van Lanschot Senior Open in The Hague.

"I have to thank Christy for giving me a lesson last week," Smyth revealed. "My set-up was out of sync, because my right shoulder was out of position.

"I worked all week getting my hips and my shoulders on the same plane, and it paid off spectacularly."

* Alan Dunbar was pipped at the post in his bid to become the second Irishman in three years to lift the Brabazon Trophy at Burnham and Berrow yesterday.

The 22-year-old Rathmore man carded an impressive 69 and came within a whisker of becoming English Amateur Open stroke-play champion.

But 25-year-old Neil Raymond of Corhampton, Southampton kept his nerve in the closing holes after a few hiccups to post a 75 and finish on 287 - three over par - just one stroke clear of Dunbar and Nuneaton's Andy Sullivan.

"I am pleased with my overall performance," said Dunbar.

Mourne's Reeve Whitson was joint 14th on 295 while Aaron Kearney of Castlerock ended on 302. Paul Cutler and John Greene were both a further stroke adrift.

* Leona Maguire once again showed her immense talent in the wind and rain at Royal Porthcawl on the Welsh coast at the weekend, but Great Britain and Ireland still suffered a record defeat by the Continent of Europe in the biennial Vagliano Trophy.

The 16-year-old starlet from Slieve Russell in Cavan was the only player from either side to conclude the two-day contest with a 100 per cent record, an excellent return considering Great Britain and Ireland were thrashed 15.5 to 8.5.

* Pablo Larrazabal beat fellow Spaniard Sergio Garcia at the fifth play-off hole to capture the BMW International Open in Munich.

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