MONDAY MEMORY: The day Shane Lowry shocked the golfing world at the Irish Open

Justin Kelly


Justin Kelly


It is now almost eight years since Offaly's Shane Lowry rocked the world of golf when he became the first amateur to win against a field of professionals for 47 years. The Clara man was just 22 years old when he arrived at the County Louth course in 2009 to take the field against the likes of Rory McIlroy and a host of Europe's top talent. 

Lowry ended up competing at the top end of the leaderboard and actually had a putt on the final day to win the tournament outright, but a miss meant he had to face into a play-off with England's Robert Rock.

Rock actually had a putt to win the title on the first play-off hole, but he missed and the pair were forced to go back to the 18th hole again. The spoils were shared again and they would take a third trip down the 18th fairway. 

Rock's approach to the green was poor, and Lowry had another putt to win the tournament. It went agonisingly past the hole and yet again, Robert Rock had a chance to bring the contest to a fourth play-off hole.

He missed and Lowry held his nerve to tap in for the win, and was immediately swarmed by fans before being presented with the trophy in the pelting rain at County Louth.

Lowry obviously went on to turn professional and has won two major tournaments since, The Portugal Masters and the Bridgestone Invitational. He is now a firm favourite on the PGA Tour and is consistently placed around the top 50 in the golf world rankings. 

If you have a story for us, sports news, an event happening in your area, or if you want to submit pictures or videos, contact the Offaly Express team via e-mail to, or through our Facebook.