Catch up with Padraig's busy playing schedule as well as finding out what he's doing off the course, from his role as the R&A's Working for Golf Ambassador, to the work he does raising awareness for the Special Olympics and as Ireland's Golf Ambassador.

Portugal Masters

Date: 21 Sept - 24 Sept 2017
Location: Oceanico Victoria GC, Vilamoura, Portugal

Entry Date:
Sep 19, 2017

Portugal Masters.
Level par third round for Padraig sees him drop back down the field in his quest to defend his Portugal Masters title. He started and finished his front nine with bogies to be out in level par but with such a packed leaderboard, he lost pace with the leaders. One birdie and one bogie on the back nine failed to make a dent so now he finds himself six behind going into Sundays final round. He tees off at 11.04am local time and will be hoping for a low one!

Another fine round by Padraig as he follows up his opening 67 with another four under par effort of 67. He again got off to a nice start and was three under after eight holes before dropping his only shot of the day at the par four ninth hole. He played the back nine in a very steady two under par and with only one dropped shot over the first two days will be looking forward to the weekend and the chance to defend his title! He trails the leader by just four shots and tees off Saturday at 12.40 pm local time with Nacho Alvira.

Padraig opens with a fine round of 67, four under par, to trail the leaders by just three shots going into Fridays second round of the Portugal Masters. Starting on the back nine, he got off to a par start but then reeled off four 3's in a row to be out in 33. Turning for home he added another birdie on the par four 1st hole but treaded water then as he finished with a frustrating eight pars! Overall, it was a good start to the defence of his title this week. He tees off late Friday at 1.40pm local time.

Padraig returns to the scene of the crime this week as he defends his Portugal Masters title which he won last year with a superb display of short game skills down the stretch. Victoria is a course that he has fond memories of as it tests all aspects of your game with plenty of water coming home to make you pay attention! It is a happy hunting ground for the Irish as Shane Lowry won here in 2012 and as always there will be a strong Irish support at the venue! Padraig begins the defence of his Portugal Masters title at 08:40am (local time) alongside Thomas Pieters and 2015 champion Andy Sullivan.

This week I am defending my Portugal Masters title. It's always great to go back to defend a title, especially when it's on the same course, as you have so many positive vibes everywhere you go. However, it does bring some extra work as there are generally a number of media commitments. This week I have had to recreate my chip shot on the last hole and also do a number of interviews, but I'd happily deal with that every week!!

Pete Cowan is here this week and I have spent a bit of time working him and discussing what I have been doing since we last saw each other. We worked on my driving, which is what I struggled with the most last week. After chatting about it and hitting a few for him we came to the conclusion that it is when I try to hit it high that causes problems for me. If I concentrate on keeping my flight down then I am less likely to hit a wide.

I played nine holes on Tuesday with Shane Lowry, Ollie Fisher and Scott Jamieson and then the pro-am on Wednesday. There haven't been any changes to the course since last year; the rough is a little heavier but nothing too bad.

I've hit a good few balls with Pete and so when I got on the course I have found myself more in practice mode than playing mode. I was conscious of this in the pro-am and made a big effort to get myself into it on the back nine. It was hard as what we were doing with my swing really improved my strike but I know that I have to get myself ready for tournament play.

I'm out early in the first round with Andy Sullivan and Thomas Pieters. Whilst my preparation hasn't been great, as I have definitely been too much into technique rather than playing mode, hopefully it won't affect me too much.

Talk soon,
Padraig.

ON TOUR

On The Tee

Alfred Dunhill Links Championship >>
05 Oct - 08 Oct 2017
Old Course, St Andrews, Carnoustie & Kingsbarns, Fife, Scotland

FAN MESSAGES

Mike Kilbride. - Basingstoke. UK. : Great golf in Portugal !! Best Wishes. Mike.

Dennis Buckley - Dublin : Well done sir ! Brilliant stuff.

Michael Reid - Bagor,Northern Ireland : Padraig - brilliant,well done, great to see you winning this. All the best for the future. Regards Michael Reid

Paddy McNamara - Artane : Knew you would do it. Cracking putt on the 18th. Well done. Jumping up and down celebrating. Delighted for you.

Philip Halpenny - Portmarnock Golf Club : Padraig, you've given us so many good days over the years and today was surely one of them. What a pleasure to see those steely eyes deliver at the Victoria Club. Your determination and self belief are an inspiration to all of us still trying to master our great game. Congratulations and thanks for the thrills that keep on coming. PH

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