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Ulster duo in Eisenhower Trophy chase

Ulster pair Paul Cutler and Alan Dunbar will lead Ireland’s challenge for the Eisenhower Trophy in October.

The men — who hail from clubs in neighbouring towns in the north west — will be asked to transform the fantastic individual form that they have shown this season to a team format at the World Amateur Team Championship.

Both Cutler and Dunbar have enjoyed success in tournaments this season and they will be joined in Argentina by Kevin Phelan, who is currently attending the University of North Florida.

Cutler is the highest ranked Irish amateur at present and that is largely down to the fact that he won the Lytham Trophy in May.

That victory also helped the Portstewart man onto the St Andrews Trophy team as Ireland’s sole representative for the tournament against Continental Europe in Milan later this month.

Dunbar plays at Rathmore Golf Club in Portrush — where Graeme McDowell learnt his trade — and like his professional counterpart is no stranger to success over the last few months. Dunbar is the reigning Irish Amater Open champion — having lifted the trophy at Royal Dublin in May.

He has already represented Ireland at the European Team Championship this season as well as in the Home Internationals.

His form saw him win the Willie Gill Order of Merit award as well.

Waterford-native Phelan qualified for the US Open at Pebble Beach this season and is ranked among the top three Irish players in the world thanks to what has been a fantastic season so far for him.

He has been selected because of his strength in stroke play tournaments, having recorded 18 sub-par rounds and eight top-10 finishes in the US this year and was a team-mate of Dunbar’s at the Home Internationals, when making his Ireland debut.

The Eisenhower Trophy will be staged at the Buenos Aires and Olivos Golf Clubs over the weekend of October 29-31 and is decided over 72 holes of stroke play with the total of the two lowest scores by players counting in each round.

Meanwhile Michael Hoey fired a level par round of 72 in the Czech Open to finish his second round on two under par.

He trails leader Swede Peter Hanson by five shots, but is well in the running for a high finish, with many of Europe’s top professionals taking a weekend off after the US PGA as a total of 13 players are separated by only two shots at the halfway stage of the tournament.

Peter Lawrie his a four under par 68 and is just a single shot off the lead.

It could have been so much better for Lawrie though.

Indeed he could well have been leading going into today’s third round had he not bogeyed two of the last four holes.

Shane Lowry had the best round of the day when he tested the statisticians by recording a superb round of 64.

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