WATCH: Shane Lowry almost wins again as he and Ian Poulter close on leaders with strong finish in New Orleans

SHANE Lowry showed some short game brilliance alongside partner Ian Poulter to keep frontrunners Patrick Cantlay and Xander Schauffele in his sights at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans.

ive down overnight, the European Ryder Cup duo were ten down after passing one in the foursome at TPC Louisiana.

Clad in green plaid shorts that Lowry picked, they beat second and fourth before the Offaly man nearly scored his second ace of the season in the 213-yard third.

They then made five birdies and just one bogey in a 32 homecoming to hit a three-under 69 with the Offaly man’s chip-in birdie from 20 yards on the 15th.

Cantlay and Schauffele followed up their spectacular 59 in fourballs with a four-under 68 and a one-shot lead on 17-unders from David Lipsky and England’s Aaron Rai, as well as Doc Rodman and Sam Ryder shooting 67s.

Lowry and Poulter were eighth at 11-under in an eight-tie, but Séamus Power and Graeme McDowell missed the eight-under cut by three shots.

They carded a birdie and three bogeys in a two-over-74, which left them 54th in the five-under with only the top 33 teams and a tie to advance.

That included Jay Haas, who became the oldest player to make a PGA TOUR cut when he shot 71 with son Bill, heading towards the mark over the weekend at the age of 68 years, four months and 20 days in his 799th appearance bring.

On the DP World Tour, Royal Dublin’s Niall Kearney is enjoying the tough setup after coming last to birdie at the ISPS Handa Championship in Spain.

The Dubliner (34) signed for a two-under 68 as he returned to Infinitum’s Lakes Course to complete his weather-delayed opening round, then chiseled out a one-over 71.

“The course is set up very well with hard rough,” said Kearney, who finished level 60 with a dugout, ten shots behind Scotsman Scott Jamieson, who shot a 63 to lead by two shots ahead of Finland’s Tapio Pulkannen at 11 under .

“It’s a really tough, proper set-up but I like the tougher tests so I’m hoping to get off to a quick start tomorrow and get it working over the weekend.”

Clandeboye’s Jonathan Caldwell hit a 71 for the second straight game and Cormac Sharvin hit a 70 when they missed the cut by three shots in a two-over.

On the LPGA Tour, Leona Maguire missed her first cut of the season at the DIO Implant LA Open at Wilshire Country Club.

The world No. 19 made five birdies, five bogeys and a double-bogey in a 73 to four-over an off-cut shot.

World number one Jin Young Ko shot a seven-under 64 and Japan’s Nasa Hataoka a 68 to share the lead with a seven-under, two clear of Australia’s Hannah Greene.

Stephanie Meadow, meanwhile, fired a one-over-72 to end four off-cut shots on seven-under.

In amateur golf, Kirkistown Castle’s Beth Coulter shot a four-under-69 on Portstewart’s Strand Course and won the Ulster Women’s Championship through a shot by Clandeboye’s Jessica Ross.

It was Coulter’s second win of the season on the Bridgestone Women’s Tour following her victory in the Zara Bolton Royal Portrush Scratch Cup.

Killarney’s Corrina Griffin took third place with an over over, two shots clear of Edmondstown’s Evelyn Park and Royal Portrush’s Laura Webb. WATCH: Shane Lowry almost wins again as he and Ian Poulter close on leaders with strong finish in New Orleans

Fry Electronics Team

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