Captaincy was the furthest thing from the minds of Pat Murphy and Helen O’Donnell when they first joined Shannon Golf Club but now that they find themselves at the helm of their respective sections of the club, both are honoured to be entrusted with the title.

A Waterville, Co Kerry, native who grew up in Cork, Pat Murphy, nicknamed ‘The Gooch’ by his fellow golfers, worked in Limerick and now resides in Clare. He first took to the fairways in Bandon before joining Limerick Golf Club where he played for ten years (1985-1995) before finally stepping across the county border into Clare to join Shannon Golf Club where, as he says himself, he will happily remain.

Not one to shy away from responsibility, Pat has been an active member of the men’s committee for the past five years and has represented Shannon in the Jimmy Bruen competition when he played off seven. Now, as captain, his ambition for his fellow male golfers is that they will be successful in the range of interclub competitions Shannon will enter this year.

“It’s a very fast year once the competitions start,” he says, adding that it will be a great honour to represent members of the club at local, regional and national levels, and one which he is fully committed to, accepting that family life will have to take a back seat.

Helen O’Donnell is equally proud to captain the ladies’ section of the club. A relative newcomer to golf, playing only ten years or so, Cork city native Helen says she is humbled by her selection.

“Being at the helm of the ladies’ club means the world to me; It’s a tremendous honour. I would love to see more ladies join the club and to make it easier for women to play golf. We plan to introduce a few new initiatives this year in our endeavours to grow membership.”

Both captains look forward to welcoming visitors to Shannon during the year, most especially the Ladies Inter-Pro Championships which will be hosted at the club from 11-14 July 2017.