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Thornton heads field in quality Irish Open qualifier

 

By Paul Kelly

A field of 130 players will compete in the €40,000 Dubai Duty Free Irish Open qualifier at the Rosapenna Hotel and Golf Resort in Co Donegal on June 30 and July 1.

The 36-hole tournament, administered by the PGA in Ireland, will be played on the Sandy Hills Links. Four starting places in the $7,000,000 Dubai Duty Free Irish Open hosted by the Rory Foundation at Ballyliffin Golf Club (July 5-July 8) will be at stake.

PGA professionals will compete alongside six amateurs selected by the GUI and 12 professionals nominated by the European Tour.

Leading lights on the PGA in Ireland circuit, including Michael McGeady (Evolve Golf Coaching), Colm Moriarty (Glasson Hotel & Golf Club), Simon Thornton (Tulfarris Golf Resort), David Higgins (Waterville Links) and Damian Mooney (Damian Mooney Golf) will be in action as will reigning Irish PGA champion Tim Rice (Limerick).

The GUI have nominated Reece Black (Hilton Templepatrick), Robert Brazill (Naas), Jamie Fletcher (Warrenpoint), Peter O'Keeffe (Douglas), James Sugrue (Mallow) and Jake Whelan (Newlands) to play.

Also featuring will be a number of Challenge Tour regulars including Cormac Sharvin and Ruaidhri McGee, who represented Rosapenna as an amateur.

They have accepted European Tour invites to play along with Colin Crowley, Brian Casey, Stuart Grehan, Conor O'Rourke, Jack Hume, JR Galbraith, David Carey, Rory McNamara, Kevin Phelan and Chris Selfridge.

There will be an official practice day on Friday, June 29. In the case of a tie a sudden death play-off will be used.

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