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Golf Roundup Harrington, O’Sullivan find some records made to be broken

February 16, 2011

By Staff Reporter

By John Manley

The ink barely had time to dry before the names of Padraig Harrington and Denis O’Sullivan were removed as course record holders. Both established standards last week, only to see them toppled a mere 24 hours later. More important, each squandered an opportunity to win his first tournament of 1998 in Europe.

European Tour

There’s a new leader atop the Volvo rankings in Europe and it isn’t Darren Clarke, who was second to Lee Westwood as they teed off in the Linde German Masters at Gut Larchenof in Cologne. Colin Montgomerie leapt over both Westwood and Clarke by virtue of his one-stroke victory over Robert Karlsson and Vijay Singh. Paul McGinley was the top Irishman in the field, tying Westwood for 6th place at 271 (69-68-67-67).

Harrington was a shot behind Montgomerie as play commenced on Sunday, but his 72 dropped him well behind Monty, who drilled a 67. Harrington placed in a tie for 8th at 272 (69-64-67-72). His Friday round set a course record, but that was erased on Saturday by Rodger Davis’s 63.

As for Clarke, who falls back to third on the money chart, he settled for 21st place with six others at 13-under 275 (69-70-67-69). Clarke never really worked his way into contention at any point.

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Unable to make the cut with a score of 142 or better were Eamonn Darcy (144) and Raymond Burns (149).

European Seniors Tour

Denis O’Sullivan had a lot to feel confident about, going into the final round of the Elf Senior 0pen at the Pan Golf Club in France. The former Irish amateur champion from Cork had just shot a course record 64 in the second round, tying him for the lead with Brian Waites. In many cases, O’Sullivan’s 67 would have been good enough to win, but not when your rival eclipses your one-day-old record with is own 63. Thus, Waites (195) won by four strokes over O’Sullivan (199), who had two on the third finisher, John Fourie. This was the second consecutive week in which O’Sullivan occupied the runner-up position.

Arnold O’Connor was also in the hunt, heading into the final round just one shot off the lead. His 70 knocked him back into a tie for 6th at 203 (68-65-70). Farther back were David Jones, tied for 13th at 205 (69-67-69); Eddie Polland, tied for 18th at 207 (71-69-67); Dr. Arthur Spring, tied for 24th at 209 (74-68-67); Paul Leonard, 29th at 211 (71-71-69); Liam Higgins, 30th at 212 (72-70-70); Gordon Parkhill, tied for 31st at 213 (73-70-70); Kenny Stevenson, tied for 36th at 214 (72-69-73); Tommy Halpin, 48th at 218 (68-74-76), and Adam Whiston, 52nd at 222 (72-74-76).

PGA Tour

This has been a character building year for Keith Nolan. The rookie from Bray, Co. Wicklow, has had his hands full just trying to make a cut this year, so he had to be feeling pretty good after an opening round 69 placed him among the top 20 on the leaderboard at the Westin Texas Open at the La Cantera Golf Course in San Antonio. The feeling lasted less than 24 hours, however. Nolan came in with a 74 on Friday, and his 1-under 143 was one shot below the cut line.

Richard Coughlan, who is looking to come up with about another $70,000 in earnings if he is to avoid Q-School, didn’t play poorly here, he just didn’t play well enough. The scores were coming in on the low side, and his 143 (72-71) gave him the weekend off. Coughlan has four tournaments left in which to make a run at the top 125 on the money list.

Nike Tour

John Kernohan shot even-par 288 in the Nike Oregon Classic at the Shadow Hills Country Club in Junction City. Kernohan tied for 37th after rounds of 72, 70, 74, 72, good for earnings of $990. He was well behind the medalist, Charles Raulerson, who shot 272.

European Challenge Tour

Gary Murphy tied for 9th in the Eulen Open Galea at Neguri in Bilbao, Spain. His 286 (69-75-71-71) was six shots off the pace.

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