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Golf Roundup Coughlan heads east, Far East

February 16, 2011

By Staff Reporter

By John Manley

Richard Coughlan has found a home for 1999 on the other side of the international date line. The County Offaly golfer, who missed a provisional spot on the American tour this year by one position, sojourned to Malaysia, where he qualified for the Asian PGA Tour.

Needing to finish in the top 40, Coughlan tied for 18th place with a 72-hole total of 280 (72-75-66-67) at the Tanjong Puteri Golf Resort in Johor Bahru.

He shouldn’t be longing for company in the Far East. Dubliner Bryan Omelia also made it through, tying for 14th place at 279 (71-72-70-66). Omelia was a teammate of Keith Nolan’s at East Tennessee State.

Nike tour

Speaking of Nolan, he is looking to get back on the PGA Tour with a big year on the Nike Tour, but last week’s performance better not be a harbinger of things to come for the Bray, Co. Wicklow, man. Nolan failed to make the cut at the Lakeland Classic. He shot 146 (75-71), which left him three strokes over the 143 that would have allowed him to continue play.

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European tour

Ernie Els reigned on his home ground in the Alfred Dunhill South African PGA Championship at the Haughton Golf Club in Johannesburg. Els shot 273 to win by four strokes over Richard Kaplan. Paul McGinley, the lone Irishman to make the cut, matched Els’ second and third rounds, in which both shot consecutive 69s.

It was in the opening and closing rounds that they parted company. Where Els was shooting 67 and 68, respectively, McGinley was coming in at 77 and 76 to finish the tournament at 291, three over par. Missing the cut were James Loughnane, 152 (73-79), John McHenry, 155 (77-78), and Eamonn Darcy, 156 (82-74).

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