Thursday, July 18, 2019

Irish Girls’ Close Championship
Galway Golf Club
 July 16 to 19, 2019
 
                                   
Final Four: Coulter, Foster, Byrne and Donegan
   
 
 
Beth Coulter, Anna Foster, Sara Byrne and Aine Donegan are the final four players at the Irish Girls’ Close Championship in Galway.
 
Fifteen-year-old Beth Coulter, leading qualifier this week, has played camogie since she was three, golf was never on her radar until Kirkistown Castle Professional Neil Graham visited her primary school to offer five weeks coaching.
 
Two years later and Beth had played her way onto the ILGU Horizon Performance Panel and was selected for the U14 team in a  friendly match against Wales alongside Donegan and Anna Dawson. As another two years past, Coulter competed in her first Women’s Amateur this June and represented GB and I at the Junior Vagliano Trophy at Royal St. George's, Kent. Now Coulter faces her  first Irish Girls’ Close Championship semi-final tomorrow (Friday). 
 
Anna Foster was two holes down to her quarter-final opponent Jan Browne (Kilkenny) through 12 holes but squared the match and went through at the short par-4 19th.The Elm Park teenager represented Ireland at the European Girls’ Team Championships in Spain last week, her first time at that event, having made her debut for Ireland at the Home International matches in Ballybunion last August.
 
Sara Byrne was Irish Women’s Close Champion in 2018 and will join a short list of players to win the title should tomorrow's tie go her way. Hailing from Douglas, Byrne will begin her college career at University of Miami in the Autumn of 2020.
 
The last player to secure her place in the semi-finals was Aine Donegan from Lahinch. Donegan faced Kate Lanigan (Hermitage) in the quarter-finals and while the defending champion was two holes up at the turn, Donegan is not one to let a match go easily.
Eighteen holes wasn’t enough to separate the players, both being were three under par – a conceded birdie at the 20th was the ultimate decider, ensuring Donegan would be Byrne’s semi-final opponent.
 
Meanwhile, Annabel Greham (Ballina), Emma Fenlon (Grange), Caoimhe O’Grady (Blackbush) and Anna Dawson (Tramore) will compete for the Plate.
 

FRIDAY'S TIES


CHAMPIONSHIP
SEMI-FINALS
08:00 Coulter v Foster
08:10 Byrne v Donegan
    
PLATE
SEMI FINALS
08:20 Greham v Fenlong
08:30 O’Grady v Dawson
    
Carla Reynolds
Irish Ladies Golf Union|

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