Preparations are now underway for a homecoming celebration at the club where Shane Lowry first took up golf, Esker Hills in Tullamore. Both register surprise victories at The Open Championship and Barbasol Championship, respectively, to rejuvenate their careers.
There will always be anomalies - Shane Lowry had missed his last four Open cuts - but now it makes ideal sense.
And yet, a caddie change gave him a new lease on life, and he began to finally see results with a victory at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship in January. Portrush also loved the Open Championship, with a brilliant week having a stunning conclusion. He finished T2 at the RBC Canadian Open.
Lowry, cheered on throughout his round, protected the lead he built in the first three rounds - something he couldn't do three years ago, when he blew a four-shot lead on the final day of the U.S. Open.
"It was Shane's time, Shane's week, fair play", he said of his friend Lowry, who finished on 15-under 269 to Fleetwood's nine-under 275.
"I can't believe this is me standing here", Lowry said has he cradled the silver claret jug.
In truth, Fleetwood had openings early in the round, chances to make birdies and put Lowry under pressure, but when he needed to be on fire with the putter, he ran cold. Of course, there will be the naysayers who will denigrate the 32-year-old's felicitations - just as there were for Clarke after he refused to stay coy in toasting his triumph in 2011 - but that will not bother Lowry.
However, J.B. Holmes, who led at the halfway stage with Lowry and started the day in third, endured a horrendous day as the American shot a 16-over 87 to tumble down to 67th. Justin Rose (79) fell 16 spots to finish T20.
He closed with a 1-over 72, the first time since 1996 that victor was over par in the final round, and it was no less impressive. And the under-par scores were so rare they looked like a misprint. What can I say? I've had a really good feeling all weekend. All the talk coming through the gates at Royal Portrush yesterday was of weather, and whether.
One of Lowry's greatest skills is his honesty.
Sure, he'd won the 2016 Houston Open, but Jim Herman had made only three cuts in 19 starts this season. Despite the tough finish it has been a great year for McDowell, who has a win and three top 10s on the PGA Tour. 2019 Champion Golfer of the Year! "He supports everything. You just have to say it to him that there's something on this week or next week, there's no problem - he'll sponsor it", Mr Newman said.
He added: "Along with everyone else in the tourism industry here, I am very confident that The Open will be back soon and that tourism has a very exciting future ahead thanks to how Portrush, the Causeway Coast and Glens and the whole of Northern Ireland has delivered".
Fleetwood's other second-place finish at a major was at the U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills a year ago.