Paul O’Hanlon and Michael Collins made a strong start to the Europro Tour season when they shared fourth place behind Australian Daniel Gaunt in the Motocaddy Masters at Wensum Valley in Norfolk.
O’Hanlon from The Curragh birdied his first two holes to get to within a shot of overnight leader Gaunt before a bogey at the third and double bogey six at the sixth killed his momentum.
He eventually dug deep and closed with a one-under par 71 to finish in a three way tie for fourth with Collins and Italian John Spagnuolo on four under par as Gaunt hit a 69 to win by five shots from Andrew Marmion and Andrew Johnston on 10 under.
Collins of FORE Ireland recovered from the onset of flu on Wednesday to complete the last day convincingly with a four under par 68 that included a triple birdie blitz over the last three holes.
Limerick’s Tim Rice played the last seven holes in six-under par as he posted an adventurous 70 to share 25th place with former Connacht Youths champion Neil O Briain (74) on one over.
Four over par through 10 holes, Rice birdied the 12th, eagled the par five 14th and then polished off his round with three straight birdies.
Former British Amateur champion Brian McElhinney of Team Ireland shot a final round 73 to share 27th on two over par with Noel Fox three shots further back on five over after a closing eagle three gave him a 74.
Brendan McCarroll ended with an 80 to finish 11 over for the event after three bogeys and two double bogeys.
T4 Michael Collins www.foreireland.com -4 F 70 74 68 212 £1,433.33
T4 Paul O’Hanlon Curragh -4 F 71 70 71 212 £1,433.33
T25 Tim Rice Limerick +1 F 72 75 70 217 £345.00
T25 Neil O Briain +1 F 73 70 74 217 £345.00
T27 Brian McElhinney +2 F 74 71 73 218 £307.50
T42 Noel Fox +5 F 73 74 74 221 £232.50
55 Brendan McCarroll +11 F 76 71 80 227 £175.00