Colm Moriarty in action in Mallorca two weeks ago. Credit: www.golffile.ieIn the literature of Arthur Conan Doyle, Moriarty is the archenemy of Sherlock Holmes, a criminal mastermind hell-bent on achieving his goal.

In Irish golfing circles, he’s Colm Moriarty, the ball-striking wizard from Athlone who can’t seem to catch a break.

A Walker Cup player in 2003, the affable midlander turns 32 next month still believing he’s got more than enough game to make it on the main tour. He showed his skills last week in Madeira, when he finished seventh behind fellow Irishman Michael Hoey.

And he showed in the second round of the Telenet Trophy at Royal Waterloo on Friday that he has no give up in him either.

After an opening 77, Moriarty could have been forgiven for going through the motions in round two. Instead, he shot a four under 68 to make the cut with two shots to spare.

Ranked 22nd in the Challenge Tour standings from which the top 15 earn full tour cards at the end of the year, you get the impression that the former South of Ireland champion and Mullingar Scratch Cup winner can go all the way this season.

As one former amateur colleague said this week: “He’s the kind of player you feel would finish inside the top 50 on the European Tour without sweat if only he could get there. And he showed he’s a player for the big stage when he played so well in the Open at St Andrews last year.

“It just shows you how good the standard is on the Challenge Tour these days. Guys are coming off the Challenge Tour and shooting straight into the top 50 in the world and winning tournaments.”

Moriarty hasn’t won on the Challenge Tour since his maiden win in 2007 and never finished higher than 34th in the rankings. Perhaps this will be the year he gets his big break.

Thanks to his top 10 finish in Madeira, he’ll have another chance to shine on the main tour next week when he tees it up in the Saab Wales Open at Celtic Manor.

As for the Telenet Trophy, former amateur star Tommy Fleetwood leads by two shots on six under but scoring is so bunched that Moriarty is just three shots outside the top 10.

However, he was the only Irish player to make the cut in Belgium as Niall Kearney and Gary Murphy both failed to repair the damage of their opening rounds.

Kearney followed his 79 with a 71 to miss the cut by four shots as Murphy was undone by an early triple bogey seven in a 78 as he finished eight shots outside the mark on 10 over.