Moran’s ‘best match’ helps Ireland to win Home International title
CASTLE Golf Club’s Robert Moran played a hugely significant role in helping Ireland win the Men’s Home International title for the first time since 2017.
In their final match, Ireland came up against an English team that had been seeking a third straight victory in this tournament.
The boys-in-green started slow, taking just two half points in the morning foursomes which saw the English lead 4-1 heading into the singles.
Moran carried his sensational form into the singles matches, playing out a thrilling encounter with John Gough, English Amateur champion.
Gough was six-under-par over Hankley Common’s front nine holes and yet, he still found himself trailing the Irishman on the 10th tee.
Moran made 10 birdies across the 18 holes, but it was matched the whole way by Gough, who registered a flawless card with seven birdies and no bogeys and resulted in the match being halved.
“It’s the best match I’ve ever played in,” Moran said at the end of it.
“John is a really good friend of mine and for us to halve the match with those scores and that standard is bizarre.
“Neither of us deserved to lose, so it was a fair half that I was just glad to get to help the team.”
There was no shortage of final day drama at the tournament, as Ireland, England, Scotland and Wales waited until the final hole to discover the winners.
Ireland needed only to halve the final with England to pip Scotland to the Raymond Trophy, and they did exactly that.
Had England’s Callan Barrow sunk his 10-foot birdie attempt on the final green, it would have halved his match with Liam Nolan, but the ball slipped past the hole.
The two sides finished on 7.5 apiece, meaning Ireland topped the table on two-and-a-half points with the Scots second on two, England on one-and-a-half with Wales propping up the table.
Ireland had beaten both Scotland and Wales over the first couple of days of the tournament.
Moran held his own against the Welsh on Day Two, winning his singles match and playing his part in the foursomes to see Ireland card an 11-4 victory.
Trailing by two shots through six holes, the Castle golfer chipped away at James Ashfield’s lead to win 4 and 3 in the Singles.
Moran, paired with Alex Maguire, came up against Ashfield and Luke Harries in the foursomes earlier that morning and again emerged on top.
Ireland won the foursomes 3-2, with Moran and Maguire winning their match 3 and 2.