Higgins targets Irish PGA

By Brian Keogh

David Higgins hopes to put his K Club disappointment behind him with victory in the Irish PGA this week.

And the Waterville man, 34, hopes that some history will repeat itself when he tees it up with old amateur rival Padraig Harrington for the first two rounds at The European Club.

A closing two-over par 72 left Higgins well down the field in the Smurfit European Open on one-over par.

But after denying Harrington in the Irish Close and South of Ireland finals as an amateur in 1994, Higgins is hoping for a repeat when the Irish PGA starts on Wednesday.

Harrington's decision to tee it up at The European Club has saved the day for the organisers of the Irish PGA as they were without a title sponsor.

And Higgins added: "It's great to be playing with Padraig. We probably wouldn't have the tournament if he wasn't playing or certainly wouldn't be playing for the same amount of money.

"We are very lucky to have him. But I just have to beat him now. It will be kind of head to head I suppose with David Mortimer in there as well for the first two days.

"It's 13 years since I beat Padraig in the South and the Close. There are a few grey hairs there now but at least there are hairs there."

As for his form, Higgins is happy with how he's playing despite a roller coaster finish at the K Club.

He said: "I didn't drive it well today and that's what happens when you don't drive it well.

"But I am plying nicely and I played better on the back nine which is a positive for the next few days and the Irish PGA.