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Tears of joy at home golf club as Lowry wins The Open

Shane Lowry’s grand-uncle Thomas Newman was among the supporters packed into the small Esker Hills club on the outskirts of Tullamore.

Unbridled joy took hold at Shane Lowry’s home golf club of Esker Hills as the Offaly man was crowned The Open champion at Portrush.

There were tears, shouts and screams as the Clara native claimed his first major title.

Shane Lowry’s grand-uncle Thomas Newman was among the supporters packed into the small club on the outskirts of Tullamore.

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Shane Lowry with the Claret Jug (Richard Sellers/PA)

He said his heart was in his mouth as Lowry inched closer to the win. Despite a strong lead, Mr Newman said he was still afraid until the final moments.

“He’s wonderful, he’s brilliant for this club,” he said.

“It’s an absolutely huge achievement.”

Mr Newman said the friends Lowry had made when starting at the club two decades ago were still his friends now.

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“Every time he steps in the door here he is treated like God here. It’s as simple as that,” he added.

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Supporters at Shane Lowry’s home golf club, Esker Hills in Co Offaly, celebrate his victory (Lorraine O’Sullivan/PA)

Mr Newman said it would be weeks before the win sinks in and he couldn’t wait for the homecoming.

“It’ll be massive, there’s no doubt about it. Whenever it does happen it will be fantastic,” he added.

PORTRUSH, NORTHERN IRELAND - JULY 21: Open Champion Shane Lowry of Ireland celebrates with the Claret Jug on the 18th green during the final round of the 148th Open Championship held on the Dunluce Links at Royal Portrush Golf Club on July 21, 2019 in Portrush, United Kingdom. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
PORTRUSH, NORTHERN IRELAND - JULY 21: Open Champion Shane Lowry of Ireland celebrates with the Claret Jug on the 18th green during the final round of the 148th Open Championship held on the Dunluce Links at Royal Portrush Golf Club on July 21, 2019 in Portrush, United Kingdom. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
Republic Of Ireland's Shane Lowry during a press conference after winning the Claret Jug during day four of The Open Championship 2019 at Royal Portrush Golf Club. Pic: Richard Sellers/PA Wire.
Open Champions Shane Lowry gets his hands on the Claret Jug
PORTRUSH, NORTHERN IRELAND - JULY 21: Open Champion Shane Lowry of Ireland celebrates with the Claret Jug on the 18th green during the final round of the 148th Open Championship held on the Dunluce Links at Royal Portrush Golf Club on July 21, 2019 in Portrush, United Kingdom. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
PORTRUSH, NORTHERN IRELAND - JULY 21: Open Champion Shane Lowry of Ireland celebrates with the Claret Jug on the 18th green during the final round of the 148th Open Championship held on the Dunluce Links at Royal Portrush Golf Club on July 21, 2019 in Portrush, United Kingdom. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
Open Champion Shane Lowry celebrates with the Claret Jug, wife Wendy and daughter Iris.
PORTRUSH, NORTHERN IRELAND - JULY 21: Open Champion Shane Lowry of Ireland celebrates with the Claret Jug on the 18th green during the final round of the 148th Open Championship held on the Dunluce Links at Royal Portrush Golf Club on July 21, 2019 in Portrush, United Kingdom. (Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)
PORTRUSH, NORTHERN IRELAND - JULY 21: Open Champion Shane Lowry of Ireland celebrates with the Claret Jug on the 18th green during the final round of the 148th Open Championship held on the Dunluce Links at Royal Portrush Golf Club on July 21, 2019 in Portrush, United Kingdom. (Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)
Shane Lowry celebrates with the Claret Jug
Republic of Ireland's Shane Lowry celebrates with Claret Jug after winning The Open Championship 2019 at Royal Portrush Golf Club. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday July 21, 2019. See PA story GOLF Open. Photo credit should read: David Davies/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. Still image use only. The Open Championship logo and clear link to The Open website (TheOpen.com) to be included on website publishing.
Republic of Ireland's Shane Lowry celebrates with Claret Jug after winning The Open Championship 2019 at Royal Portrush Golf Club. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday July 21, 2019. See PA story GOLF Open. Photo credit should read: David Davies/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. Still image use only. The Open Championship logo and clear link to The Open website (TheOpen.com) to be included on website publishing.
Republic Of Ireland's Shane Lowry celebrate winning the Claret Jug during day four of The Open Championship 2019 at Royal Portrush Golf Club. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday July 21, 2019. See PA story GOLF Open. Photo credit should read: Niall Carson/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. Still image use only. The Open Championship logo and clear link to The Open website (TheOpen.com) to be included on website publishing.
Republic of Ireland's Shane Lowry celebrates with Claret Jug after winning The Open Championship 2019 at Royal Portrush Golf Club. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday July 21, 2019. See PA story GOLF Open. Photo credit should read: Niall Carson/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. Still image use only. The Open Championship logo and clear link to The Open website (TheOpen.com) to be included on website publishing.
Shane Lowry finally gets his hands on the Claret Jug.
PORTRUSH, NORTHERN IRELAND - JULY 21: Open Champion Shane Lowry of Ireland smiles on the 18th green during the final round of the 148th Open Championship held on the Dunluce Links at Royal Portrush Golf Club on July 21, 2019 in Portrush, United Kingdom. (Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)
PORTRUSH, NORTHERN IRELAND - JULY 21: Open Champion Shane Lowry of Ireland celebrates on the 18th green during the final round of the 148th Open Championship held on the Dunluce Links at Royal Portrush Golf Club on July 21, 2019 in Portrush, United Kingdom. (Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images)
PORTRUSH, NORTHERN IRELAND - JULY 21: Open Champion Shane Lowry of Ireland celebrates on the 18th green during the final round of the 148th Open Championship held on the Dunluce Links at Royal Portrush Golf Club on July 21, 2019 in Portrush, United Kingdom. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
Shane Lowry celebrate winning the Claret Jug Pic: Niall Carson/PA Wire.
Republic Of Ireland's Shane Lowry celebrate winning the Claret Jug during day four of The Open Championship 2019 at Royal Portrush Golf Club. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday July 21, 2019. See PA story GOLF Open. Photo credit should read: Niall Carson/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. Still image use only. The Open Championship logo and clear link to The Open website (TheOpen.com) to be included on website publishing.
Republic Of Ireland's Shane Lowry celebrates on the 18th during day four of The Open Championship 2019 at Royal Portrush Golf Club. Pic: David Davies/PA Wire.
PORTRUSH, NORTHERN IRELAND - JULY 21: Open Champion Shane Lowry of Ireland celebrates on the 18th green during the final round of the 148th Open Championship held on the Dunluce Links at Royal Portrush Golf Club on July 21, 2019 in Portrush, United Kingdom. (Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)
Republic Of Ireland's Shane Lowry celebrates winning the Claret Jug with wife Wendy Honner and kid during day four of The Open Championship 2019 at Royal Portrush Golf Club. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday July 21, 2019. See PA story GOLF Open. Photo credit should read: Richard Sellers/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. Still image use only. The Open Championship logo and clear link to The Open website (TheOpen.com) to be included on website publishing.
Republic Of Ireland's Shane Lowry celebrates winning the Claret Jug during day four of The Open Championship 2019 at Royal Portrush Golf Club. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday July 21, 2019. See PA story GOLF Open. Photo credit should read: Richard Sellers/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. Still image use only. The Open Championship logo and clear link to The Open website (TheOpen.com) to be included on website publishing.
Republic Of Ireland's Shane Lowry celebrates winning the Claret Jug during day four of The Open Championship 2019 at Royal Portrush Golf Club. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday July 21, 2019. See PA story GOLF Open. Photo credit should read: Richard Sellers/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. Still image use only. The Open Championship logo and clear link to The Open website (TheOpen.com) to be included on website publishing.
Republic Of Ireland's Shane Lowry celebrates winning the Claret Jug during day four of The Open Championship 2019 at Royal Portrush Golf Club. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday July 21, 2019. See PA story GOLF Open. Photo credit should read: Richard Sellers/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use. Still image use only. The Open Championship logo and clear link to The Open website (TheOpen.com) to be included on website publishing.
Ireland's Shane Lowry celebrates after winning the British Open golf Championships at Royal Portrush golf club in Northern Ireland on July 21, 2019. (Photo by Andy BUCHANAN / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USEANDY BUCHANAN/AFP/Getty Images
Ireland's Shane Lowry celebrates after winning the British Open golf Championships at Royal Portrush golf club in Northern Ireland on July 21, 2019. (Photo by Andy BUCHANAN / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USEANDY BUCHANAN/AFP/Getty Images
PORTRUSH, NORTHERN IRELAND - JULY 21: Open Champion Shane Lowry of Ireland celebrates on the 18th green during the final round of the 148th Open Championship held on the Dunluce Links at Royal Portrush Golf Club on July 21, 2019 in Portrush, United Kingdom. (Photo by Francois Nel/Getty Images)
Shane Lowry has won The Open Championship at Royal Portrush.
Shane Lowry enjoyed a four shot lead on the 14th tee of his final round.
Shane Lowry opened up with a level par front nine to close in on his first major title at the Open Championship.
Shane Lowry of Ireland reacts to his birdie putt on the fourth during the final round of The Open Championship at Royal Portrush (Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Shane Lowry in the rough on the 1st during day four of The Open Championship at Royal Portrush (David Davies/PA)
Shane Lowry begins the final round of The Open Championship with a four shot lead.
Graeme McDowell's final round is under way.
Shane Lowry enjoyed a four shot lead on Saturday evening.

Club manager Ray Molloy described it as “the biggest day ever at Esker Hills”.

“We’re just so pleased, we can’t believe it. Shane said he was pinching himself coming up the 18th fairway, I’m still pinching myself.

“It’s so important to a small community and a small golf course, for him to win the biggest golf tournament in the world this year and to win it so easily,” he said.

“And to think Shane came here as a young golfer and learned his skills on the hills of Esker.”

Mr Molloy said the small club, had about 220 members, and dozens had turned out to watch the final stages on a big screen in the club house.

“We’re just so proud of him, we cannot believe our luck,” he added.

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Supporters at Shane Lowry’s home golf club, Esker Hills Golf (Lorraine O’Sullivan/PA)

“I get emotional when I think how far here in the small club to produce such a wonderful golfer.”

Mr Molloy’s daughter Michelle likened the atmosphere to an All-Ireland football final day.

“The jerseys are out, the banners are out, the colours are out,” she said. “There’s great excitement, and there’s great pride in Shane and how far he’s come.”

Ms Molloy said Lowry had gone from winning the Irish Open 10 years ago as an amateur to claiming The Open, “the creme de la creme of the majors”.

“It’s really exciting for us… Everyone is behind him. He’s part of the community,” she said. “He’s such a nice guy, it makes you want to support him even more.”

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Lowry celebrates with wife Wendy Honner and daughter (David Davies/PA)

Local man Eoin Flanagan, who played a round of golf with the 32-year old major winner after his Irish open win, said: “It’s huge for Ireland, it’s huge for Offaly. It’s a huge achievement… He’s up there on the world stage and he’s going to be a name in every household.”

Andy Hoctor, who plays in the club, said everyone knew Lowry and loved him.

As Lowry stepped up to take some of his final shots, Mr Hoctor said: “Everyone is so nervous, you’re nearly afraid to look at it. You couldn’t say enough to explain how great it is.”

Bridget Farrell was also among the crowd watching with her two girls.

She said: “The atmosphere is just electric, you can really get a sense of the emotion, the excitement, and just the thrill of it all.

“It’s just huge, huge excitement, and pride as well that someone from the local area, someone from this club is on the world stage.”

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