Kearney wins Titleist PGA Play-offs, earns Wentworth spot

Niall Kearney became the first Irishman to be crowned the PGA No 1 following his wire-to-wire victory in the Titleist PGA Play Offs in Turkey.

The Irish PGA champion rose to the occasion over the PGA Sultan Course at Antalya Golf Club with rounds of 65, 67 and a closing 67 to finish on 14-under-par – two shots clear of the pack.

His victory secured him his main aim of a place in next year’s BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth, but also brought with it a place in the Great Britain & Ireland PGA Cup team and a cheque for £2,000.

Kearney, who won with his dad Joe on his bag and his mum Fiona watching from the sidelines, said: “It’s huge to be the No 1. I played really well all week. I led from day one which was difficult at times as I felt a bit of pressure, certainly today. My game was there and it was just one of those weeks.

“I’ve never played the BMW PGA Championship and that was my goal coming out here. It’s going to be a dream come true. I’ve watched it on TV every year and to be part of it is going to be a real treat. It’s massive and Shane Lowry, who I played a lot of golf with, has done so well around there. I’m looking forward to it and going to enjoy it – hopefully.

“I don’t know the full extent of the PGA Cup but it’s a top event and I’m delighted to have got in the team.”

Also celebrating was Channels PGA pro Jason Levermore, who finished runner-up on 12-under-par to cap a remarkable season. Just days after lifting the Golfplan PGA Pro-Captain title over the same course, he was also booking his place in the PGA Cup team and at Wentworth.

David Dixon (Enmore Park) completed the top three. The former European Tour winner finished on 11-under, earning him £1,200 but more importantly a long-awaited return to Wentworth and unexpected place in the GB&I PGA Cup team.

The 26-year-old Royal Dublin star added, "I played a number of times in region events back in Ireland and it’s been very good to me. It’s great I can come out here and play against the top guys from the regions and capture it.

"I’ve had a really good season. Played a lot of Challenge Tour stuff and made progress every year. I was positive and was able to play pro-Ams and in the PGA Sprint events when I was back home. I won the Irish Championship, headed the Order of Merit and then came out here and won this."

Colm Moriarty (Drive Golf Performance) started the day two shots behind Kearney but carded a final round one over par 72 to slip down the leaderboard, finishing in fourth.

Michael McGeady's final round 68 moved him up to ninth overall, Michael McDermott (Pure Golf Leopardstown) finished 20th on two over par, Damien Mooney (Ballyliffin) was 23rd on seven over with Brendan McGovern 25th on the same score.

Pos Player TodayR3Thru Total R1 R2 R3 TotalPoints Prize Fund  
1 Ireland Niall Kearney
  Royal Dublin Golf Club
-4 F -14 656767199 £2,000.00
2 England Jason Levermore
  Channels Golf Club
-6 F -12 686865201 £1,500.00
3 England David Dixon
  Enmore Park Golf Club
-5 F -11 686866202 £1,200.00
4 Ireland Colm Moriarty
  Drive Golf Performance Ltd
+1 F -7 676772206 £1,000.00
5 England Alex Belt
  Bridlington Links Golf & Leisu
-1 F -6 686970207 £850.00
6 England Benn Barham
-1 F -5 716770208 £750.00
7 Scotland Greig Hutcheon
  Paul Lawrie Golf Centre
+2 F -4 686873209 £700.00
8 England Chris Gane
  Lefthanded Golf at Silvermere
-3 F -2 707368211 £650.00
9 Ireland Michael McGeady
  Foyle Golf Centre
-3 F -1 737168212 £500.00
10 England Ian Ellis
  Gt Yarmouth & Caister Golf Clu
E F -1 726971212 £500.00
11 England Matthew Cort
  Rothley Park Golf Club
-1 F -1 727070212 £500.00
12 England Richard O'Hanlon
  St Kew Golf Club
+1 F -1 697172212 £500.00
13 England Andrew Willey
  Bulwell Forest Golf Club
-4 F -1 747167212 £500.00
14 England Darren Charlton
  Dunstable Downs Golf Club
-2 F -1 707369212 £500.00
15 Scotland Graham Fox
  Clydeway Golf
+2 F E 716973213 £376.67
16 England Ian Walley
  Kedleston Park Golf Club
E F E 697371213 £376.67
17 Wales Richard Dinsdale
  Parc Golf Club/Asbri Golf
+1 F E 726972213 £376.67
18 Scotland Greg McBain
  Paul Lawrie Golf Centre
-3 F +1 757168214 £340.00
19 England Mark Hooper
  The Rayleigh Club
-3 F +2 747368215 £321.67
20 Ireland Michael McDermott
  Pure Golf Leopardstown
-1 F +2 717470215 £321.67
21 England Gareth Davies
  Abbeydale Golf Club
+2 F +2 717173215 £321.67
22 England John Mellor
  Oaks Golf Club
+2 F +4 756973217 £310.00
23 Ireland Damian Mooney
  Nevada Bobs Belfast
+5 F +7 737176220 £285.00
24 England Michael Watson
  Wessex Golf Centre
+2 F +7 747373220 £285.00
25 Ireland Brendan McGovern
  Headfort Golf Club
+1 F +7 757372220 £285.00
26 England David Shacklady
  Mossock Hall Golf Club
+6 F +10 737377223 £250.00
27 England James Ablett
  Lee-on-The-Solent Golf Club
+7 F +12 747378225 £250.00
28 England Christopher McDonnell
  Troon Golf Management
+7 F +21 797778234 £250.00