Chris Selfridge during practice today (Tuesday) at Carton House
7 August 2012
Selfridge Seeks To Do Rory Double
The Irish Close Champion Chris Selfridge (Moyola Park) hopes to replicate the Rory McIlroy double from 2006, by winning both the Irish Close and European Amateur titles in one season as play gets underway at Carton House today (Wed) in the 25th staging of the European Amateur Golf Championship, sponsored by Chartis Europe.
Having taken a lot of time off to practice recently, Selfridge, who has played just two tournaments since he won the East at Baltray in June, has a busy two months ahead of him, committed to playing in no fewer than seven tournaments starting this week in Ireland before he makes his senior international debut at the Home Internationals in Glasgow Gailes later this month before jetting back to college in America for the collegiate golf season.
“I've just been practicing hard, trying to wrinkle out wee things. I've kind of struggled with my irons this year, just a few technical things, I've been working really hard on them” he said as he rehearsed a drill on the range before his afternoon practice round on Tuesday.
“I'm going back to America and people are asking if this is the end of the season for me now, but it's really just the beginning. I've got seven tournaments in the next two months so it's far from the end yet."
A bit of a stranger to the Montgomerie Course at Carton House where the championship is being played, Selfridge is not too worried about this and has a strategy for dealing with courses he is unfamiliar with.
"I've probably played it at least ten times but obviously I haven't played it in two years. I got to play it (when I was) on the boys panels, but I'm fairly new to it. I remember it quite well, I played it yesterday. I play by myself, I learn a lot more about a course when I play by myself. I feel very well prepared, I don't think preparation is an issue."
McIlroy was the fourth Irish victor in the championship following Paddy Gribben in 1998, Stephen Browne in 2001 and Brian McElhinney in 2003.
Prominent past winners also include five-time Ryder Cup star Sergio Garcia, France’s European Tour stalwart Gregory Havret – who finished runner-up at the US Open in 2010 – and Sweden’s Carl Pettersson, who held off Graeme McDowell in 2000.
Play gets underway in this 72 hole event at 7am on Wednesday, with 144 players playing 54 holes, and the leading 60 and ties making the cut for the final 18 holes on Saturday.