The teenage Athlone golfer represents Ireland at home Open

Charlie Kelly in action. Photo: Golffile (Golf Ireland).

Talented young Athlone golfer Charlie Kelly is representing Ireland at the Boys Home Internationals in Scotland this week.

Charlie was selected for the Home Internationals after finishing second in the Boys’ Order of Merit. The 17-year-old started playing golf at an early age at Athlone Golf Club, of which he is still a member. He is also a member of Glasson GC and Roganstown GC in Dublin, with his handicap attached to the Swords-based club.

The Home Open – with the Irish team competing against England, Scotland and Wales – started yesterday (Tuesday) and will continue until tomorrow (Thursday), August 4. The competition consists of quartet and singles matches.

The Boys and Girls Home Internationals take place at Downfield Golf Club near Dundee. Downfield is located between Carnoustie and St Andrews in Scotland and is considered one of the finest parkland courses in the UK.

Tom Cafferky (Ballinasloe) is also part of the Irish men’s squad for home internationals, while Oliva Costello (Roscommon GC) is part of the Irish women’s squad.

Last year, Kelly was part of the Roganstown Golf Club team that won the Senior Cup, a very prestigious trophy in amateur golf. He was also part of the team that won the Fred Daly Trophy (U-18) last year.

Athlone Golf Club congratulated Charlie on his selection for the local Internationals and wished him well ahead of the event.

Kelly recently represented Connacht in the minors’ inter-provincials and last year helped Connacht win the U-18 men’s inter-pro title for the first time in 20 years.

Charlie is coached by the highly regarded Geoff Loughrey, who also coaches recently crowned Southern Irish Champion Hugh Foley.

Originally from Summerhill in Athlone, Charlie is the son of Deirdre and Damien Kelly, and he has one brother, Andrew.

Damien and Deirdre are well known in Athlone business circles, with Damien being the managing director of insurance and investment firm Planalife, while Deirdre runs the bridal wear business, Kadee.

Interestingly, famed local golfer Colm Moriarty is Charlie’s godfather. During his career, Moriarty has won victories on the Challenge Tour and the PGA EuroPro Tour. Damien helped Moriarty as a caddy for several years and he describes Colm as a good mentor to Charlie.

“Colm is a big advocate for moving Charlie to play different courses and in different events to gain experience,” Damien said.

A student at Athlone Community College, Charlie will be entering his final year after the summer break.

The Irish squads (boys and girls) for the Home Open are listed below.

Ireland boys team: Aodhagan Brady (Co. Sligo), Tom Cafferky (Ballinasloe), Fionn Dobbin (Malone), Darcy Hogg (Belvoir Park), Sean Keeling (Roganstown), Charlie Kelly (Athlone/Roganstown), Alex King (Faithlegg), Jack Murphy (Douglas), Gavin O’Neill (Malahide). Team captain: Peter English (Limerick). Team Coach: Stephen Hood.

Ireland women’s national team: Anna Abom (Edmondstown), Olivia Costello (Roscommon), Emma Fleming (Elm Park), Rebekah Gardner (Clandeboye), Marina Joyce-Moreno (Llavaneras Golf Club), Katie Poots (Knock), Róisín Scanlon (Woburn). Team Captain: Kate Gallagher (Castle). Team Coach: Chris Jelly.

Team leader for boys and girls teams: Brenda Craig (Roganstown).

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