Mullingar Scratch Trophy for Headfort golfer

Story by Tom Kelly

Wednesday, 29th August, 2012 4:54pm

Mullingar Scratch Trophy for Headfort golfer

Mullingar captain John Kelly presented the Mullingar Scratch Trophy to Brian Casey (Headfort) with Paul Raleigh (Grant Thornton), Fintan Buckley (GUI president) and Noel Delaney (Grant Thornton).

There are some illustrious names inscribed on the prestigious Mullingar Scratch Trophy and Headfort Golf Club's Brian Casey joined them at the weekend when he shot final rounds of 71 and 70 on Sunday to claim the title.

Joining the likes of Rory McIlroy, Padraig Harrington, Darren Clarke and Shane Lowry as one of the winners of the famous old trophy was ample reward for the 21-year-old Navan man who had forgotten to post his entry for the European Amateur Championship recently.

In achieving his win Casey denied local Mullingar golfer Dessie Morgan what would have been a first home winner of the competition in its 50-year history.

Casey, who won last year's Irish and Leinster Youth titles before claiming a remarkable 10-shot victory in the Munster Strokeplay Championship earlier this year, finished a shot clear of Morgan and Ballymena's Dermot McElroy who both carded four under pars 284.

"It is a great title to win and a nice feeling to have my name on a famous trophy alongside names like Rory McIlroy, Padraig Harrington, Darren Clarke and Shane Lowry," said Casey who will be heading to the European Tour's qualifying school next month in an effort to secure his card for 2013.

"It was tough today, but I felt it had been coming. I've just been very patient all year. Hopefully I can hit a bit of form for the qualifying school next month."

Morgan had looked set to claim the win and become the first Mullingar player to win on home soil in the golden jubilee year of the competition when he was tied for the lead overnight. However, he started his day with three bogeys in his first round of the final day, but still managed to shoot a 72 to lead by one shot from Castleknock's Aaron Kearney.

That excellent position turned to disaster for Morgan as he shot 39 for his opening nine holes in the last round and he turned for home five shots adrift of Casey who had opened with four straight birdies before a bogey on the eighth.

McElroy stormed up the leaderboard to post the leading score of three under in the clubhouse, but Casey did enough over the last nine holes to seal the win.

The Headfort golfer birdied the 12th and 16th but bogeys on the 13th, 14th and 17th gave Morgan hope.

The Mullingar man birdied the 11th, 14th and 16th which meant he needed a birdie at the par five 18th to force a play-off with Casey.

However, he could only make par as Casey breathed a huge sigh of relief.

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