Keating and McCarthy win as Dillon suffers Portmarnock Links rollercoaster
Joe Dillon. Picture courtesy PGA. Photo by Patrick Bolger/Getty Images

Joe Dillon. Picture courtesy PGA. Photo by Patrick Bolger/Getty Images

Joe Dillon made an eagle and six birdies in a rollercoaster 70 but was left to rue three bogeys and two double bogeys as Seapoint’s Dylan Keating and Black Bush professional Stephen McCarthy claimed the top prizes in the TaylorMade Winter Series at Portmarnock Hotel & Golf Links.

Keating, the reigning Irish and Ulster Under 16 Boys champion, won the nett with a 70 off two as McCarthy also shot a one-under-par round to claim the gross as 72 players teed it up in the second outing of 2019 at the north Dublin links.

Recently named on the Irish Under 18 panel, Keating was four-over with six holes to play when he went out one-over par and then followed a double bogey six at the 10th with a bogey at the 12th.

Seapoint’s Dylan Keating. Picture:  Pat Cashman

Seapoint’s Dylan Keating. Picture: Pat Cashman

But he eagled the 13th and birdied the 14th and 16th before finishing par-bogey for a gross 72 and a winning one-under 70 in the nett.

He edged out Alps Tour professional Jonathan Yates for the first nett prize on a countback as the Naas man came home in one-over for his 70.

Another Naas-based Alps Tour professional, Conor O'Rourke, was third in the nett with a 71 featuring two birdies and two bogeys.

As for McCarthy, he was out in one-under par thanks to birdies at the second and fifth and a bogey at the third.

But he dug deep to come home in level par, mixing a birdie on the 10th and bogeys at the 11th, 12th and 18th with an eagle at the 13th to edge out Dillon after a countback.

The Headfort professional had a truly up and down day as he sandwiched double bogeys at the first and 18th between an eagle (4th), six birdies (2nd, 3rd, 5th, 11th, 13th and 15th) and three bogeys (7th, 12th and 16th) for his 70.

The Island's Kevin Le Blanc was third in the gross with a level par 71 as he mixed birdies at the second, fourth, sixth and 13th with bogeys at the first, 12th, 16th and 17th.

TaylorMade Winter Series, Portmarnock Hotel & Golf Links (Par 71, SSS 75, CSS 75)

8 January

Nett

1, Dylan Keating (2) Seapoint GC 70

2, Jonathan Yates (Pro) Naas GC 70

3, Conor O’Rourke (Pro) Naas GC 71

Gross

1, Stephen McCarthy (Pro) Black Bush GC 70

2, Joe Dillon (Pro) Headfort GC 70

3, Kevin LeBlanc (Pro) The Island GC 71