Jake Whelan took a giant step towards winning that elusive Irish cap when he birdied the last two holes to snatch a one-shot win over County Sligo’s TJ Ford in the Mullingar Scratch Trophy.
Thirty years after Paul McGinley etched his name on the famous silver cup, the Grange man (26) followed in the Dubliner’s famous footsteps when he closed with a four-under 68 to win his first big title.
“I am delighted to get over the line,” said Whelan, a long-time member of Newlands who only joined Grange this year.
“It’s been a long wait. TJ played great golf coming in and it wasn’t looking great down the last few holes but I rode my luck, putted great and made some birdies at the right time.”
The final day of the 59th staging of the classic 72-hole event was a brilliant advertisement for amateur golf. And Whelan, who had endured recent semi-final defeats in the Irish Close (2016), the West (2017), and the South (2019), emerged victorious in the prestigious Westmeath event.
Caption: Jake Whelan with the Mullingar Scratch Trophy.