Gort, Athenry and Galway golf clubs all suffered agonising defeats at the Chartis Europe Cups and Shields in Kinsale last week.
Playing in the Pierce Purcell Shield, Gort were looking for their second green pennant in this event, having won the shield in 2003 at Lisburn. Having navigated their way past Ulster champions Foyle, they set up a final showdown with Limerick side Newcastle West who had hammered the Royal Dublin club at the semi-final stage.
The Munster champions were too strong for Gort, and Newcastle West eased to a 4-1 win. David O’Dell and David Daly lost to Patrick Magner and Noel Harnett by 5/3, while Pat Curtis and Kevin Mulkerrins were beaten 5/4 by Liam Keane and Gerard Foley. The misery was compounded for Gort when David Murphy and Eoin Duggan beat Ray Quinn and Andreas Edler 4/2. Gerry Broderick and John Moylan and John Tierney and Michael O’Dell secured a half point each for Gort.
Athenry qualified as Connacht champions in the Junior Cup and they strolled to victory over Dublin side Milltown in the semi-finals to set up a final showdown with the Ulster champions Donaghadee.
However Donaghadee’s 16-year-old Andrew Clegg and 15-year-old Mark Rea inspired the Ulster champsk, notching impressive 3/2 wins against their Athenry opponents. Rea never fell behind in his encounter with Sean Glynn, while Ian Dunican lost to Clegg 3/2, and Matthew Fahy lost to William McCutcheon to seal their fate.
In the Barton Shield semi-finals, Galway Golf Club were narrowly beaten by the eventual runners-up Banbridge. The Galway team included former Irish internationals Joe Lyons and Eddie McCormack.