Young emerging professional golfers in Ireland are to benefit from the latest round of Sport Ireland Golf grants, totaling some €130,000, along with 32 guaranteed starts on the European Challenge Tour.
In addition, Des Smyth, Team Leader of Team Ireland Golf, who led a fund raising drive last year that brought in no less than €40,000.
Two Naas golfers will benefit from the latest grant allocations.
Conor O’Rourke, who turned professional last year is to receive €6,000 along with four guaranteed Challenge Tour starts; while Jack Hume, who did not take up his funding allocation last year but will be in 2018, making it his first season playing under the Team Ireland umbrella. Hume is to receive €10,000 along with five guaranteed Challenge Tour starts.
Top grants go to Gavin Moynihan and Stephanie Meadow who will each receive €20,000.
Commenting on the grants, Des Smyth said “It is incumbent on Team Ireland to focus on these young, talented players and our ambition is to help them progress on to the main professional tours; playing on a professional tour is not cheap. We are trying to prepare these players to make the grade. It does not happen instantly. It takes a few years.”
“From my understanding a lot of players just would not be able to continue without these grants,” said Smyth. “The grants are important because when you have some financial support it frees up more of your time to focus on your golf.”