Monday, May 23, 2022

Rosslare Golf Links Summer Series 2022

As if you needed any more reason to visit one of Ireland's lesser known links gems this summer, Rosslare Golf Links has just announced a new 2022 Summer Series event. The Summer Series will consist of three Friday qualifying events (24th June, 8th July and the 12th August) played on the Old Course at Rosslare Golf Links. The club has a second 12-hole course, too (The Burrow). Each event is singles strokes, open to Ladies & Gents with a maximum playing handicap of 36 and 27 respectively. And each event has fantastic prizes up to the value of €1,000, awarded to the top 5 nett scores and the top gross score on the day. 

But that’s not all, the prize winners, from all three qualifying events, will also be invited back to play in the Grand Final on 26th August where there will be a limited field of just 18 people competing for the title of ‘Summer Series Champion 2022’

Rosslare Golf Links is the only true traditional links course in the South East corner of Ireland. Founded in 1905, the club initially began as a 9 hole course and in 1926 extended to 18 holes when the famous firm of Hawtree and Taylor, Golf Course Architects, was commissioned to design the ‘new’ 18 hole course. While changes and improvements were to follow down through the years, that original design by Hawtree & Taylor can be enjoyed today by the members and visitors playing the ‘Old Course’.

Rosslare Golf Links is located in the sunniest part of Ireland (it’s official!) and one of the most popular holiday destinations with excellent accommodation options available if you decide to make a weekend of it.

The Summer Series qualifying events have an entry fee of €50pp and booking is now open at or call 053-9132203 to reserve your place. There are limited places available for each Qualifying Event so book as soon as you can sort out the dates. (You can play in all three events if you choose.)

Bookings online only via




Thursday, April 21, 2022

Leona Maguire Finds Her Way to the K Club

 What grabs my attention is this: the K Club have made some interesting and very positive ‘statements’ since coming under new ownership in early 2020. In a short amount of time there has been a significant forward shift in momentum. A clubhouse revamp and a doubling of the greenkeeping team were initial forays and they have really made their mark*. This was followed by February’s announcement that Seamus Power was to become  the resort’s new touring professional… which saw the K Club logo on his bag for his recent big weeks in the States (and will be on his bag when he plays in this year’s Horizon Irish Open at Mount Juliet).


Now it’s the turn of Leona Maguire, as she becomes the resort’s touring professional for the LPGA. The partnership between The K Club and one of the brightest stars of the tour will see the Kildare resort support Leona through the 2022 and 2023 season. Leona will join Seamus in representing The K Club on tour around the world.


And let’s not forget that Leona is enjoying a meteoric rise through the professional ranks. 

The last 12 months have seen Leona breaking plenty of records: lowest round in a Major championship; most points won by a rookie in the Solheim Cup; the first Irish player ever to be selected for the Solheim Cup team; and, most impressively, becoming the first Irish player to win on the LPGA Tour, when she won the Drive On Championship in February, 2022. 


This new partnership means Leona will team up with a place she knows well. 


“I'm looking forward to using the resort and its facilities more often, working on my game when I'm at home and spending time with the team there,” she said. “The work they are doing at the resort and their plans and ambition for the future when it comes to golf is very exciting.”


That excitement is shared by The K Club. 


"We are so proud to welcome Leona to our stable of touring professionals at The K Club along with Seamus Power,” said Conor Russell, Director of Golf at The K Club. “This partnership was a very easy decision for us to make when the opportunity presented itself. Leona is Ireland's most accomplished female golf professional, she practices regularly with us on the resort and always has time for a friendly few words. We can't wait to watch what she does next on tour and will be supporting her every step of the way."


There’s little doubt that both Leona and Seamus will be making waves in the years ahead, and the K Club logo on their golf bags might even appear prominently during TV coverage of them at the various events they compete in around the world… although that comes down to the vagaries of the broadcasters involved!


What’s New

The North course is currently undergoing a huge amount of work that is seeing fairways being stripped back, replaced and reseeded to ensure improved drainage, enhanced playability and immaculate presentation. The course is currently closed for two months while this work is being carried out.


* Other changes at the resort include new electric PowaKaddy trolleys and Riksha pull trolleys, as well as 50,000 TaylorMade balls for the resort’s driving ranges. A more entertaining addition is a new artificial putting green – costing €25,000 – on the ground level terrace. It measures roughly 60 x 20 feet and is very much a fun feature. Walk off 18, settle down around one of the terrace tables for some food or a beer and be sure to bring your putter. 


The 550 acre estate has numerous lakes and ponds and these have been cleaned up and reshaped, flowerbeds have been introduced, vegetation has been cut back (notably on the North’s 1st to reveal the nest of standing stones known as the Five Fingers), and vistas opened up. 


The North course has returned to its original routing, starting with the par-5 close to the driving range, and it is on this 1st hole that you will find the only design change to the two courses. The bunker in the middle of the 1st fairway has been removed to make the opening drive both more appealing and less punishing. 


As well as the doubling of the greenkeeping team, the arrival of six new Jacobsen hybrid machines - including green mowers, green irons and utility vehicles – has ensured maintenance and conditioning levels are back to their very best.



Friday, April 1, 2022

The Masters Of Powerscourt Team Event

The Masters is, for many, the start of the golf year… be it watching the Professionals taking on the beauty and drama of Augusta, or just getting back out onto the course.

Powerscourt Golf Club has combined the two with an Open Team Event on Friday, 8th April 2022.

For the week that’s in it golfers will get the chance to play the marvellous East Course to complement the action that will be underway over at Augusta National.


Announcing the event, Powerscourt Golf Club's General Manager, Gavin Hunt said:


"Our East Course will be in top condition and will offer our guests and members a chance to really soak up the expectation that comes with the first Major of the season on the professional tour. 


The par-3 16th on the East course

"In our 16th hole at Powerscourt East, the signature par 3, we have a challenge framed by a pond, strategically placed bunkering, tall pines and a blossom-drenched embankment. We are really hoping to see some Masters magic there. The hole sets the tone for one of the best runs home in Irish golf.”


Powerscourt Golf Club are offering a very attractive prize pool to the value of €2,000 with every golfer on the day going into a draw to win a top of the range GPS watch.

  • Entry Fee is €60pp and includes a Powerscourt "Masters Burger" after the round
  • Prizes for Top 4 teams (Team of 4 any combination)
  • Prize for Top mixed team
  • 2 best stableford scores to count on each hole
  • Nearest the Pin on the 3rd & signature 16th hole 
  • Green Tees (m) Red Tees (f)
  • Valid WHS/Golf Ireland handicap required

Golfers on the day are encouraged to post photos on their social media accounts using the hashtag #TheMasters.

To enter, contact +353 (0) 1 204 6033


Or book online by clicking here


Wednesday, March 30, 2022

Stepping It Up with the new K Club Pro-Am

Europe’s largest PGA Pro-Am to take place at The K Club this July


How would you like to tee it up alongside Ireland’s top golf pros in Europe’s largest PGA Pro-Am? This summer the opportunity is all yours at The K Club Pro-Am, the largest PGA Pro-Am to take place in Europe this year where Ireland’s leading professionals will compete for a prize fund of €100,000. 

Pictured from left to right - Conor Dillon, Manager PGA Ireland, Paul Kelly, CFM Group, 

Seamus Power, Touring Professional of The K Club, Conor Russell, Director of Golf 

at The K Club, MJ Fetherston and Paul Heery, General Manager at The K Club. 

The impressive prize fund is the largest for any Pro-Am by some distance. The flagship event, sponsored by CFM Group, will take place over two days on the 11th and 12th July. One hundred teams consisting of three amateurs and one professional per team will compete over 36 holes split between The K Club’s two championship courses, Palmer North and Palmer South, with prizes awarded to the five leading teams after the two-day tournament.


Speaking on behalf of The K Club, Conor Russell, Director of Golf said ‘’The K Club are very strong supporters of both the PGA in Ireland and professional golf. On our journey towards hosting larger tournaments at the resort, this is just beginning.’’


Conor Dillon, Manager, PGA in Ireland, said The PGA “is delighted to partner with The K Club in staging a Pro-Am of this magnitude, which will no doubt attract the leading PGA Professionals from around the country. This is an exciting time for The K Club and a fitting venue to host such a special event. I would like to thank the CFM Group and The K Club for their continued support of Irish golf."


Speaking on their sponsorship of the event, Paul Kelly, CFM Group said, "It’s an absolute privilege for our insurance company CFM Group to be involved with The K Club Pro-Am this July. All the plans are being put in place for a wonderful event that we know is going to be the pinnacle of the golf calendar for PGA professionals in Europe, set in such a fantastic location as The K Club which really is second to none when it comes to resort golf in Ireland."


There are a limited number of team spaces available. Team entry fee is €1,600 and the closing date for entries is April 30th. For further information or to reserve your space contact Conor Russell, Director of Golf at The K Club on or call 01 601 7200

Saturday, February 26, 2022

Rosslare Scratch Cup is back for 2022!

The Rosslare Scratch Cup hasn’t been played since 2019, due to the interruptions of Covid, but it used to be a stalwart of the amateur golfing season… and undoubtedly will again as this year’s tournament will be played on Saturday 9th April 2022.

The 36-hole event over this smart links in Ireland’s sunny south east will be sponsored by McCauley Pharmacies. It also takes place the week before the West of Ireland, thereby providing an excellent opportunity for those looking to sharpen their links game before the first Irish major of the year.

“We are delighted that we are able to sponsor the Rosslare Scratch Cup on such a great links course. This is an event that we agreed to sponsor in 2020 but which did not take place due to Covid pandemic. It is great to see all forms of activities return to normal and we wish Rosslare Golf Links the very best of luck with their event”. 
Tony McEntee, Chief Executive, McCauley Pharmacies

Defending champion Gary Collins will be looking to retain the title he won in 2019 and with a €2,000 prize fund to play for, there will be plenty at stake for all those competing. A double shotgun start with a redraw after round 1 should provide plenty of excitement down the stretch.

It also costs a mere €50, which includes lunch. 

Entries are open to players with a handicap index of 3.4 or lower. Places are limited and will be allocated on a first come first served basis, so book now to avoid missing this fabulous test of links golf.

Friday, February 25, 2022

Power to the K

It would be hard not to have noticed the name 'Seamus Power' in the newspapers over recent weeks. He may have missed cuts these past two weeks but he's had the hottest start of any golfer to 2022. And he was back in Ireland this week, at the K Club, to join the resort as its new touring professional.  

The partnership between The K Club and the Waterford-born golfer will last until the end of the 2023 season. Power has already won on the PGA Tour... chances are high that by the end of 2023, he will have won again. His talent has come shining through and, other than Leona Maguire, he certainly seems to be the Irish Golfer most likely to win a tournament. 


The association with one of Irish golf’s brightest stars comes at the perfect time for The K Club. Power has climbed to 45th in the world rankings on the back of his outstanding performances, which include three top 10s, his best being a third-place finish at the Sony Open in Hawaii. 


Conor Russell, Director of Golf at The K Club, said: “We are thrilled to have the opportunity to announce Seamus as our touring professional and believe he will fly The K Club flag proudly throughout the golfing world.”


“As some of his biggest supporters, we look forward to having some fun with him along the way and share in the success that we are confident he will achieve.’’

Should Seamus remain inside the World’s Top 50, he will make his debut at The Masters this April. It will be a wonderful achievement for the Irishman and his loyal following of golf fans. 


For Seamus, the relationship is a great opportunity to unite with one of golf world’s most prestigious and well-established names. “I have always carried a huge sense of pride being from Ireland and I am very excited to partner with The K Club as their new Touring Professional. While playing professionally around the world, I will proudly have the Irish golf flag and The K Club on my bag. I’m excited for the future and now having a relationship with an Irish club makes me feel right at home “


For more information on golf at The K Club see and


Monday, February 14, 2022

Joe O'Carroll with Harry Ewing
It was a good week last week with some really positive news for Irish golf. Fairways and FunDays announced a new ambassador while Carne Golf Links announced the return of a major Irish championship. It also involved me returning to the K Club – on behalf of Fairways and FunDays – where there is significant work being done to the Palmer North course.

Fairways and FunDays is the leading inbound Irish golf tour operator and it has found a new ambassador in Harry Ewing, Irish golf professional, caddie on the LPGA Tour and co-host of Ireland’s leading golf podcast, 3 Off The Tee. The Partnership was announced at the K Club – I was taking the photographs – where this new partnership will regularly showcase Irish golf to the golfing world. The goal is to focus on enhancing the golfing experience of Fairways and FunDays’ clients as well as expanding markets for Irish golf tourism. The agreement will also see Harry carry Fairways and FunDays branding on the LPGA Tour. 

Irish golf grew worldwide in the years leading up to the pandemic with in excess of 200,000 overseas visitors playing golf here every year. Such volume accounted for more than 1.7 million bed nights and a financial contribution to the economy of close to €270 million. Post-COVID, thanks in no small way to the sterling work of Tourism Ireland and Failte Ireland, the pent up demand for Irish golf holidays is set to be released in a major way. And thanks to the rise of new Irish representation on the PGA and LPGA Tours, with Leona Maguire and Seamus Power joining the more established Irish tour professionals, Ireland’s reputation as a bucket-list destination has never been more evident. 

The 18th green from the balcony at K Club Palmer North

Fairways and FunDays and Harry Ewing will be leveraging his reputation in the golfing industry and visibility amongst the golfing community to grow business in traditional and new markets. 

“We are absolutely thrilled to be bringing Harry on board as our latest Ambassador. Harry will use his recognition and presence as a caddie on the LPGA Tour to grow our business which is exclusively focused on golf in Ireland, and to assist us in building better golfing experiences for our clients,” said Joe O’Carroll, director at Fairways and Fundays. “Harry is widely known in the sector through his 3 off the tee podcast and his strong track record. His latest caddying assignment, with USA’s Marina Alex is off to a flying start with her being in contention in her first 2 outings this year, most recently sharing the final round pairing with Leona Maguire on her first LPGA Tour win.”

It'll be a sound partnership and with Harry’s travels taking him worldwide – he’s heading to Asia for the next leg of LPGA tour – the word on the beauty of Irish golf and the professionalism of Fairways and FunDays will spread ever further afield.

The 2nd green on the K Club's Palmer North course

Incidentally, since falling under new ownership the K Club has been investing heavily in its courses and facilities. The current thrust will see the Palmer North closed for some 10 weeks as huge work will be undertaken to ‘recap’ the top layer of all fairways, thereby massively improving the drainage. Other plans are also in the works.



The Good News for Carne Golf Links in Belmullet, Keeps on Coming


The PGA in Ireland’s premier tournament, the Irish PGA Championship, will return to Carne Golf Links following its successful staging last year. The 2021 edition of Ireland’s oldest Championship, which numbers major champions Padraig Harrington and Darren Clarke among previous winners, marked the official opening of the Wild Atlantic Dunes course at Carne, which combines the Eddie Hackett back nine with the new Kilmore nine. The 54-hole tournament will be contested from August 18-20, and it will be sponsored by Columbia Sportswear once again. The Pro-Am will take place on August 17. I played in it last year and it was – as expected – brilliant fun.

The original Eddie Hackett 9th at Carne


Gerry Maguire, the chairman of Carne Golf Links owners, Turasoireacht Iorrais Teo, added: “The team here at Carne Golf Links are privileged and honoured to have been asked once again to host the Irish PGA Championship in 2022. “This event is huge for the town of Belmullet and indeed the wider Mayo region, and its importance to both Carne Golf Links and the local economy cannot be underestimated.  We are delighted our main sponsor for the 2021 event, Columbia Sportswear, have kindly agreed to also sponsor the 2022 championship, and we very much look forward to working in partnership with them, the PGA in Ireland, and the local community, to ensure the 2022 tournament is even better than its successful predecessor."

The announcement comes on the back of Carne’s Wild Atlantic Dunes course placing at number 13 in Irish Golfer magazine’s Top 100 course rankings, 2022. This means that Carne is now the highest rated course on this North West coastline. Along with the return of international visitors in 2022, the future for Carne Golf Links is looking very bright indeed.  




Friday, December 31, 2021

Golf’s Highs and Lows 2021

Some thoughts on those 2021 moments that highlight what's great about golf... and what's not. 


Co. Cavan’s Leona Maguire received a wild card pick for the European Solheim Cup team. She was the first Irishwoman to be selected and she played imperious golf to deliver 4.5 points from a possible five. A record scoring rookie debut and she had some superb performances during the year, which bodes extremely well for 2022.

Leona Maguire tees off at Rathfarnham Golf Club, in
December. She is a Kastus Global Brand Ambassador. 

At Augusta, after Matsuyama had sunk his final (winning) putt his caddie, Shota Hayafuji, replaced the flag and then bowed to the course. Respect. 


Phil Mickelson became the oldest Major winner at 50, claiming the PGA Championship in May. Improbable, remarkable and a victory that emphasises the longevity of golfers everywhere. The only disappointment was that it wasn’t the US Open, giving Phil the career slam.


Clandeboye’s Jonathan Caldwell shot a closing eight-under-par 64 to earn an impressive first European Tour victory, winning the Scandinavian Mixed tournament by a single shot. His final approach shot, out of rough, was a thing of beauty, leaving him with a three foot birdie putt.

After the ‘low’ of Tiger Woods almost killing himself in a February car crash, the greatest golfer of all time (IMO) made an astounding comeback in December, alongside his 12 year old son (also, see ‘lows’ below). Fans dare to dream of 2022 and Tiger’s pursuit of Jack’s major tally.


The ISPS World Invitational was played at Galgorm Castle and Massereene. It was the second time the event had been played at these venues but July’s tournament was co-sanctioned by the European Tour, Ladies European Tour and LPGA as a top-tier event with equal prize money ($3 million pot) for both men and women. The event returns in 2022.

Rory in tears after the Ryder Cup singles. Who didn’t feel for the guy!

Back home, the July opening of Tom Doak’s St Patrick’s Links, at Rosapenna, set the world aflutter. It has already broken into’s top 100 courses in the world (My review is here) and it will bring tens of thousands of golfing tourists to the glorious golfing outpost that is Donegal.

The 8th hole at St Patrick's



At the other end of the scale to Matsuyama’s caddie’s sign of respect at the Masters, Wayne Player proved himself to be an entitled plank when he was caught blatantly promoting a brand during the starters’ ceremony at Augusta. On the day when we should have been talking about the honour for Lee Elder (far too late, IMO) of hitting the opening drive, we instead found ourselves discussing an insignificant prat who has now been banned from the Masters.


Patrick Reid continues to push the boundaries of acceptable behaviour with his interpretation of the rules. And the Tour continues to let him get away with it. 


Saudi Arabia continues its attempts to ‘buy’ golf, thereby sportswashing its disgraceful human rights record. The Super Golf League reared its head again and while that particular project still flounders, Saudi Arabia’s LIV Golf Investments appointed Greg Norman as CEO and proceeded to agree investment of $200 million in the Asian Tour, over the next ten years. That’s how the country continued to host the Saudi International event, which attracts the world’s best golfers, after both the European Tour (now DP Tour) and PGA declined to sanction the event. The world’s best mutter feeble excuses that human rights are for politicians to deal with, not sports people, while happily taking the millions on offer. We know you don’t care… at least be honest about it. 


The Player Impact Program (PIP) is designed to reward the top 10 golfers who ‘move the dial’ in the world of golf social media. $40 million will be shared between those golfers. WHAT A WASTE OF MONEY. Support lower tours, invest in junior programmes… do anything other than pour more millions into the pockets of multi-millionaires. Phil Mickelson claimed in late December that he had ‘won’ this particular category, thus receiving an $8 million award.


Tiger Woods and the February car crash. Initial reports suggested he might have to lose a leg.


The media obsession over 12-year old Charlie Woods’ appearance with his father in December, at the PNC Championship Pro-Am, was – in a word – unhealthy.   


Brooks vs Bryson. Really? Did this really have to become a thing that the PGA Tour then exploited with a 12-hole matchplay event that no one gave a damn about? Whether the animosity was real or made up it was all rather sad in the end.


Harrington’s decisions at the Ryder Cup. This may be a more controversial view (i.e. it’s mine) but mistakes were made across the entire event. Padraig claims he wouldn’t have changed anything in hindsight and, to be blunt, Europe would have lost whatever Padraig decided, but there were some bizarre decisions that cost Europe points. Rory and Poulter remains, in my mind, one of the oddest combinations I have ever seen, and leaving Fleetwood out of the foursomes was bizarre… especially when you saw how badly Rory was performing.


McIlroy’s brilliance continues to be undone by Rory himself. That said, he was extremely unlucky during the final round at the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai, when it looked like he would win, when a perfect wedge shot to the 15th deflected off the flag into a bunker. McIlroy imploded thereafter and ripped his shirt in the scorer's hut at the end of the round. Perhaps that sums up his year… several years in fact.