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Wednesday, July 3, 2019

The St. Andrews of Ireland Makes Its Debut

Lahinch Golf Club makes its debut on the European Tour this week when it hosts the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open. And yes, Lahinch is known as "the St. Andrews of Ireland."

Defending champion Russell Knox

Lahinch is a links course in Munster, Ireland. It hosts the South of Ireland Championship, an amateur tournament that started in 1895. The big talk about the course has been the 154-yard par-3 fifth hole, which is a blind shot into the wind and over a 30-foot high hill so it plays longer. I found this interesting tidbit about the hole over at
The blind nature of the hole requires a large white stone be placed on top of the hill to mark the day's pin placement, as the width of the green allows for many pin placements on different lines.
So yes, this could be a very interesting hole to watch!

While the course may be new to the field, the defending champion isn't. Russell Knox has been around for a while now, with a WGC win and a couple more wins on the ET and the PGA Tour. And as a Scottish golfer, I'm sure he's played courses like Lahinch many times in his life.

All of which makes the Irish Open the perfect start to this little run-up to the Open. First the Irish Open, then the Scottish Open and finally THE Open. I can't help but feel that the players who play all three events will have a distinct advantage over everyone else.

GC lists their TV coverage starting at 5:30am ET on Thursday. It will run until 1:30pm ET if I read their schedule correctly. I hope so -- I really want to see the pros play that fifth hole!

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