Cormac Sharvin and Chris Selfridge remain in contention at Portrush

Cormac Sharvin
Cormac Sharvin

Cormac Sharvin (Ardglass) and Chris Selfridge (Moyola Park) successfully progressed to the last 32 of the Amateur Championship at Royal Portrush on Thursday.

Selfridge had a relatively comfortable passage with a 4&3 victory over Wales’ David Boote, while Sharvin proved too strong for Scotland’s Calum Hill.

“I did nothing wrong. Played solid. Was under par for the first 12 holes with birdies at five, nine and 11,” said Sharvin.

“I lost 10 and was lucky at 15 when my gap wedge hit the flag, otherwise it would have been away off target. I got a half from that and I’m happy with my form, playing good.”

Selfridge cruised into a three up lead at the turn against Booth and kept has opponent at arms length until closing out the match on the 15th.

The University of Toledo student is due to fly out to Switzerland at the weekend to compete in the World Universities Championship but is preparing to change his plans if he continues to make progress at Royal Portrush.

“I worked on all aspects of my game yesterday afternoon and played well today. Happy with my form and I hope it continues. I was never behind,” said Chris.

Ireland’s other competitors, Jack Hume, Rory McNamara, Stuart Grehan and Richard Bridges all bowed out at the second round stage.

England’s Jordan Smith pulled off an upset when he defeated highly rated Italian Renato Paratore.

The Bowood Golf Club member knew he was in for a hard challenge before he teed off.

At number six on the World Amateur Golf Ranking, Paratore was the highest ranked player in the field.

“I got off to a bit of a flier with five birdies in the first nine holes to go four up,” said Smith, a member of the Great Britain & Ireland 2013 Walker Cup team.

“I just played steady from there on in. I played for fairways and greens because I didn’t have to do anything special after the front nine.”