Jim sinks Stuart with a grandstand finish at Lisburn GC

Lisburn's season-opening competition winner Jim Cunningham.
Lisburn's season-opening competition winner Jim Cunningham.

Jim Cunningham knows how to close out a win in style.

The 18 handicapper won the first competition of the summer season at Lisburn Golf Club and produced final hole heroics to do it.

He made a magnificent birdie two on the 18th for a ‘four pointer’ and a total score of 44 points.

Standing on the final tee, he was four points behind Stuart Campbell (6) but his birdie finish gave him top prize on count-back.

Stuart started with two birdies but took three to get down from the front of the fourth green and that cost him a bogey four.

A birdie three at the ninth gave him a front nine of 34 and an impressive 23 points. He had back to back birdies at 11 and 12 but drove into the trees at 15, leading to his second bogey of the round.

Stuart had 44 points after 17 holes but left his tee shot short of the final green. His chip was too strong and he three putted down the sloping green for what proved to be a very costly ding.

Chris Davis (17), Gavin Hawkins (13) and Stephen Wilkinson (17) all finished just one point on 43. Chris and Gavin finished with 23 points on the back nine but Chris was one over par for the last six holes to claim third place on the countback.

David Phelan, David McGrath and Lewis Darragh were next best on 42. Matt Lyness (4) was awarded the best gross prize following his round of 71.

All round, it was a good start to the season as the good weather and the much improved condition of the course attracted 170 competitors.

Seniors

1st Billy Hawthorne 23 pts

2nd George Orr 20 pts

3rd Alan Gilpin 20 pts

4th Edgar Manderson  20 pts

WINTER LEAGUE TROPHY

Lisburn failed to make it three victories in a row when they lost the Tri Club Winter League Trophy to Portstewart on the north coast links on Sunday.

Lisburn finished second with Stephen Shaw shooting the best gross score for 43 points.