Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Craig Ross chasing top 10 finish on Evolve Pro Tour

Cambuslang's Craig Ross is sharing seventh place in a field of 58 players with one round to go in the Evolve Pro Tour's La Serena Open at the Murcia venue in south-east Spain.
Ross has had rounds of 70-73 for one-under-par 143 - five shots behind the three joint leaders: Daniel Brown (England) 70-68, Eirik Tage Johansen (Norway) 69-69 and Brendon McCarroll (Ireland) 69-69


Craig Lawrie finishes T11 in Palmares Classic VI

Craig Lawrie finished joint 11th in the Algarve Pro Tour's Palmares Classic VI at the Alvor venue today.
He had rounds of 70 and 68 for a six-under-par total of 138 and earned 375 euros (£331) for sharing that mark with two other players.
The winner of the 2000 euros (£1,764) first prize was Irishman Stuart Grehan with scores of 66 and 68 for 10-under 134. He won by one stroke from England's Max Orrin (68-67) and South African first-round leader Tyler Hogarty (63-72).
Portugal-based Scot Jay Taylor finished T40 on 145 (70-75), three ahead of compatriot Alan Welsh (71-77) for T51.
The fourth Scot in the field of 95 players, Ben Craggs shot 79-76 for 1t55 and a T72 finish

Onyria Palmares Beach and Golf Resort, Alvor.
Par 144 (2x720
134 S Grehan (Ire) 66 68.
135 M Orrin (Eng) 68 67, T Hogarty (SAfr) 63 72
138 C Lawrie 70 68 (T11)
145 J Taylor 70 75 (T40)
148 A Welsh 71 77 (T51)
155 B Craggs 79 76 (T72)


Binning and McKenna win £440 prize with a 

better-ball 63 at West Kilbride

Sam Binning (Mearns Castle Golf Academy) and Fraser McKenna (Caldwell Golf Club) won the £440 first prize in the PGA Winter Four-ball Tartan Tour competition at West Kilbride Golf Club today.
They shot a better-ball, eight-under-par 63 to head a field of 22 pairs.
Runners-up, pipped by one stroke, were Graham Fox (Clydeway Golf) and Alan Reid (West Lothian) who earned £300 for their efforts.
The Bathgate Golf Club pro pairing of Louis Gaughan and Chris Curran collected the £230 third prize with a 65.
Completing the prize list were Paul O'Hara (North Lanarkshire Leisure) and Michael Patterson (Kilmalcolm) with a 66 (£160); Alastair Forsyth (Mearns Castle GA) and Greg Paxton (Ralston) with a 67 (£95), and, also with a 67, the all-Airdrie GC pairing of Stephen Gray and Simon McLean (£95).


West Kilbride GC
par 71
63 S Binning (Mearns Castle GA) and F McKenna (Caldwell) (£440)
64 G Fox (Clydeway Golf) and A Reid (West Lothian) (£300)
65 L Gaughan and Chris Curren (Bathgate) (£230)
66 P O'Hara (North Lanarkshire Leisure) and Michael Patterson (Kilmacolm) (£160).
67 A Forsyth (Mearns Castle GA) and G Paxton (Ralston) (£95), S Gray and S McLean (Airdrie) (£95).
68 P Brookes (Pitreavie) and P Jamieson (Dunblane New), C Currie (Erskine) and I Colquhoun (Loch Lomond), N Huguet and C Marr (Musselburgh), A Marshall (Houston GR) and G Hardy (Prestwick St Nicholas), S McAllister (S McAllister Golf) and S Kerr (Strathaven).
69 C Goodwin (Strathlene) and C Armstrong (Burntisland), I McNab (Trump Turnberry) and D-R Nicol (Dundonald Links), D Orr (Eastwood) and I Hanna (Strathclyde Park), S Savage (Dalmuir) and C Everett (unatt), A White (Lanark) and R Rafferty (Renaissance).
70 G McFarlane (Clober) and D Watters (Gourock).
71 S Clelland and P Kerr (Hayston).
72 D Fleming and A Todd (Prestwick), A O'Donnell (Largs) and S Wilson (unatt).
73 G McDougall (Elie Links) and G Forbes (Mar Hall).
74 S Williamson and B Wharton (Clydeway Golf).


Jack Singh Braar's hole in one on way to four-shot lead in Egypt

England's Jack Singh Braar, 21, attached to Remedy Oak Golf Club, Dorset, pictured above in action today, had a hole in one at the sixth and seven birdies - five in a row from the 10th to the 14th - on his way to returning the lowest score of the day, a seven-under-par 65, to take a four-stroke lead with a 10-under tally of 134 in the Alps Tour's Red Sea Little Venice Open at Sokhna Golf Club, Egypt today.

Sharing second place are two Englishmen, Piers Berrington (68-70) and Benjamin Wheeler (71-67)  and France's Paul Elissaide (France), also 71-67. 
Singh Braar, who teed off at the 10th in his second round, said: "My start was pretty good again - five birdies in a row. I got a couple of more birdies but then bogeyed the first, fourth and five before I got a hole in one at the short sixth.
"I’m four ahead of the field with 18 holes to go but I’m still going to have to play some good golf  because some of these boys are going to go for it I think. 
"A lot can happen tomorrow, I just need to keep my head and hopefully, I will come up on top."

Scot Ewen Ferguson, a former Walker Cup player from Bearsden, has scored 69 and 71 for four-under 140 and is T11. Ferguson had five birdies, one double bogey and two bogeys on his roller-coaster second round. His double bogey 6 came at the second and he birdied the long third, long eighth, 11th, long 13th and par-4 18th. He bogeyed the fifth and 12th.

Singh Braar was not the only player to chalk up a hole in one. Two other players achieved the feat as well - Adrian Pinguet (at the sixth) and Ben Wheeler (at the ninth).
Weather conditions were very good all day with warm temperatures and no wind.
A total of 44 players with two-round tallies of 145 and better qualified for the final day.




USGA and RandA Joint

The way golfers around the world will calculate their handicaps is set to be transformed by a new system developed by The R and A and the USGA, with key features designed to provide all golfers with a consistent measure of playing ability.
The new World Handicap System, to be implemented in 2020, follows an extensive review of systems administered by six existing handicapping authorities: Golf Australia, the Council of National Golf Unions (CONGU) in Great Britain and Ireland, the European Golf Association (EGA), the South African Golf Association (SAGA), the Argentine Golf Association (AAG) and the USGA.
The new system will feature the following: 
  • Flexibility in formats of play, allowing both competitive and recreational rounds to count for handicap purposes and ensuring that a golfer’s handicap is more reflective of potential ability
  • A minimal number of scores needed to obtain a new handicap; a recommendation that the number of scores needed to obtain a new handicap be 54 holes from any combination of 18-hole and 9-hole rounds, but with some discretion available for national or regional associations to set a different minimum within their own jurisdiction
  • A consistent handicap that is portable from course to course and country to country through worldwide use of the USGA Course and Slope Rating System, already successfully used in more than 80 countries
  • An average-based calculation of a handicap, taken from the best eight out of the last 20 scores and factoring in memory of demonstrated ability for better responsiveness and control
  • A calculation that considers the impact that abnormal course and weather conditions might have on a player’s performance each day
  • Daily handicap revisions, taking account of the course and weather conditions calculation
  • A limit of Net Double Bogey on the maximum hole score (for handicapping purposes only)
  • A maximum handicap limit of 54.0, regardless of gender, to encourage more golfers to measure and track their performance to increase their enjoyment of the game
Quantitative research was conducted in 15 countries around the world, through which 76 percent of the 52,000 respondents voiced their support for a World Handicap System, 22 percent were willing to consider its benefits, and only 2 percent were opposed. This was followed by a series of focus groups, in which more than 300 golf administrators and golfers from regions around the world offered extensive feedback on the features of the proposed new system.
This feedback has helped shape the WHS, which has been developed by The R and A and the USGA with support from each existing handicapping authority as well as the Japan Golf Association and Golf Canada.
Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive of The R and A, said, “We are working with our partners and national associations to make golf more modern, more accessible and more enjoyable as a sport and the new World Handicap System represents a huge opportunity in this regard. 
“We want to make it more attractive to golfers to obtain a handicap and strip away some of the complexity and variation which can be off-putting for newcomers. Having a handicap, which is easier to understand and is truly portable around the world, can make golf much more enjoyable and is one of the unique selling points of our sport.”
Mike Davis, CEO of the USGA, commented, “For some time, we’ve heard golfers say, ‘I’m not good enough to have a handicap,’ or ‘I don’t play enough to have a handicap.’ We want to make the right decisions now to encourage a more welcoming and social game.
" We’re excited to be taking another important step – along with modernising golf’s Rules – to provide a pathway into the sport, making golf easier to understand and more approachable and enjoyable for everyone to play.”
The tenets of the new system focus on three main objectives: to encourage as many golfers as possible to obtain and maintain a handicap; to enable golfers of differing abilities, genders and nationalities to transport their handicap to any course globally and compete on a fair basis; and to indicate with sufficient accuracy the score a golfer is reasonably capable of achieving on any course around the world, playing under normal conditions.  
Given worldwide alignment towards a single system, all parties will now embark on a two-year transition period targeting implementation in 2020.  When adopted, the World Handicap System will be governed by The R&A and the USGA and administered by national and regional associations around the world, with safeguards included to ensure consistency as well as adaptability to differing golf cultures.
The existing six handicapping authorities represent approximately 15 million golfers in 80 countries who currently maintain a golf handicap.  
The announcement is the latest step in a multi-year collaboration between The R&A and the USGA, as well as national and regional golf associations around the world to introduce one set of Rules of Handicapping, aimed to support modernising, growing and improving accessibility of the sport.
As an extension of their support of the Rules of Golf worldwide, Rolex has made a commitment to support The R and A’s and the USGA’s efforts to implement a World Handicap System.
 The Swiss watchmaker’s contribution to excellence in golf is based on a rich heritage stretching back more than 50 years, forged through pivotal partnerships at every level of the game, from the sport’s leading professional and amateur competitions and organisations, to players at the pinnacle of their sport worldwide.
To provide feedback on the new World Handicap System or for more information, visit www.randa.org. Golfers are encouraged to follow and join in the conversation on social media by using #golfwhs2020.



The HotelPlanner.com PGA EuroPro Tour will pay a quarter of a million pounds (£250,000) bonus to any player who wins four tournaments on the 2018 schedule.
The lucrative bonus makes a return to the EuroPro Tour and has been made possible by tour title sponsor HotelPlanner.com, along with Matchroom Sport and sees the total prize money available this season to £1.2million.
PGA EuroPro graduate Chris Lloyd came closest to winning the coveted bonus purse with three wins on the 2017 season, two of those coming in back-to-back performances at Montrose Links and Studley Wood.
The £250,000 bonus will be paid as a reward to the first player who wins four tournaments on the 2018 schedule, including the Tour Championship but excluding Qualifying School wins.


Mats mandatory for fairway shots at Montrose Links tomorrow

The use of mats, except in the rough, will be mandatory for fairways shots at tomorrow's North-east Golfers Alliance fixture at Montrose Links.
The Montrose Mercantile clubhouse will be the base for checking in and returning scorecards to PLF organiser Michael MacDougall.

TEE TIMES (all from first tee)
No          Start 
1          08:10   Charlie Cassie, Grant Leslie 
2          08:19   Doug Booth, Raymond Reid 
3          08:28   David Templeton Graham Burnett Mike Herbertson
4          08:37   Sean Lawrie David Law Gordon Munro Iain Taylor
5          08:46   Stewart Finnie, Stewart Allison, Ritchie Davidson, Ross McNeill
6          08:55   Scott Mackie Laura Murray

7          09:04   Mike Brown, Raymond Brown, Sandy Davidson, Colin Craig
8          09:13   Phil McLean Chris Robb Kevin Duncan Chris Gilbert
9          09:22   Peter Walker Benjamin Henderson J Hall
10        09:31   Richard Wright Peter Cheyne John Sunley 
11        09:40   Stewart Kidd Steve Shand Ian Birnie Steve Christie
12        09:49   Gary Leslie Donald Lawrie Manson Merchant 
13        09:58   Jackie Forrest Norman Stewart Jim Scott Derek Craigie

14        10:07   Gavin Chalmers Jack Chalmers Craig Dempster Greig Hutcheon
15        10:16   David Fleming Les Fowler Alan Gall Mike Duncan
16        10:25   Mike Tough Brian Ritchie John Duff Nigel Parker
17        10:34   Robert Coupar Richard Denning Martin Forster David Nelson
18        10:43   Hamish McNaughton David Leslie Gary Homer Jack Pirie
19        10:52   Jim Stewart Willie Beattie Lenny Duncan John Hosie

20        11:01   Graham Thom Richard Ruddiman Willie Skene Alistair B Clark
21        11:10   Derek Townsley Colin Duffus Mike Smith Mike Rogers
22        11:19    
23        11:28   Mark Lawrie Tommy Collie Leslie Roger 
24        11:37   Drew Buchan William Middler Barry Elsby 
25        11:46   Peter Low John Borthwick Ian Still 


Rory McIlroy, Padraig Harrington offer interesting takes on fame

By: Kevin Casey

Rory McIlroy and Padraig Harrington view fame a bit differently, but both offer interesting points.

The pair were recently interviewed in a sit-down setting together by the Irish Independent’s Paul Kimmage, and it’s a pretty cool conversation the whole way through.

But McIlroy’s and Harrington’s thoughts on fame stuck out.

McIlroy has already opened up a bit about this before, admitting he could not live Tiger Woods’ life in terms of the scrutiny he deals with due to his intense fame.

But he expounded a bit more here. As McIlroy noted in this recent chat, he actually embraces fame in certain areas, but in others he wishes to avoid it.

“Put me in a golf environment; make me the center of attention; I love that. That’s me. That’s what I’m famous for,” McIlroy said. “Put me walking down the street in Dublin (Ireland) and someone shouting at me and I’ll be (he shields his face with his hands): ‘No! Go away.’

“It’s happy days when I’m the center of attention on the golf course, but I want to walk into Brown Thomas (an Irish department store chain), get a shirt and not be seen.”

An understandable feeling.

As for Harrington, he embraces fame wherever he can get it.

“I love it. I might (not) be that famous in the wider context of things, but I have no problem if somebody with a few drinks shouts at me as I’m walking down the street in Dublin at night. I’m delighted. I’ll wave back to them, ‘Yeah!’ (he raises a thumb) and remind myself that the more that happens, the better I’m doing.”

That wasn’t all.

Harrington didn’t imply dealing with fame is easy for him. There are challenges. Namely for the Irishman is having to deal with taking the brunt of others’ actions.

“The one I find hard is when you’re with a group of people at a table but the only ‘person’ is you,” Harrington said. “So if the table is loud it’s ‘Harrington’s table’ – not the other nine people who are sitting there. And sometimes you will try to take too much responsibility for your group.”

McIlroy added on that he’s not a great judge of character, but with fame he’s had to figure out a test on this front.

It’s a familiar one but still instructive.

“If someone says: ‘Oh, you met X. How is he?’ I’ll say: ‘I think he’s nice – he was nice to me.’ But everyone is nice to me!” McIlroy said. “The real test is the private moment. How does X treat the waiter who takes his order in the restaurant? Or the guy who can’t do anything for him? That will tell you if he’s a good guy.”

None of this is a consideration most people have to deal with, so the perspective here is especially refreshing.

And the last lesson is certainly one more people can take to heart


Hamish McColm nine over par in South Africa and likely to miss cut

Hamish McColm (Nairn) was nine over par for the tournament after five holes of the second round - he had an eight-over 80 in the first round - when play was halted as darkness fell in the Sanlam Cape Province Open 72-hole stroke play championship on Monday.
He needs to shoot a lot of birdies when play resumes in the second round if he is to make the cut.


Monday, February 19, 2018

Fereneze's Roddy McCauley shines at Scottish Junior Golf Tour event

Results from the Scottish Junior Golf Tour event at West
Kilbride yesterday. The format was 9:9Golf where only your best nine holes
A good format on the day as conditions became very difficult with
increasing wind and rain. Thankfully the greens were in good condition and
held up well in the rain. Oblivious to the conditions, Roddy McCauley had the
best score of the day with 7 under par 28.

Leading Scores

Under 18

33          Jack Lockhart (Pitreavie), Jamie Roberts (Muckhart)
34          Ian Taggart (Lenzie)
35          Liam Kirkham (Troon Welbeck)

Under 16

28          Roddy McCauley (Fereneze)
33          Aamar Saleem (St Andrews)
35          George Cannon (Glenbervie)

Under 14

37          Scott Newman (Kilmacolm)
40          Lyall Jack (Gourock)
42          Cameron Kelly (Fereneze)

The Skills Challenges were won by Aamar Saleem.

Walter Burns

Scottish Junior Golf Tour


Junior Masters event at Blairgowrie launched in memory of Barrie Douglas
One of the most popular figures across Scottish amateur golf is to be honoured with an event bearing his name to raise valuable funds for junior golf in this country.
The inaugural ‘Barrie Douglas Scottish Junior Masters’ will be staged over Blairgowrie’s Lansdowne Course this year in a fitting tribute for the Perthshire native.
Barrie, pictured, one of the game’s great characters and a guiding hand to the career of many young players including European Tour card holders Bradley Neil and Connor Syme, passed away last August while on duty as Scotland captain at the European Boys’ Team Championship in Spain.
His sudden death aged only 69 left many in the game deeply saddened and quickly saw the formation of The Barrie Douglas Foundation in his honour to help up-and-coming young players. A huge supporter of Scottish Golf activities, Barrie performed various selection and captaincy roles and was also a GB&I selector for The R&A from 2009 – 2016.
Now the Scottish Junior Masters has been added to this season’s calendar, a 54-hole (no cut) World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR) event for Under-16 and Under-18 boys that will be played at Blairgowrie from 27 – 29 April. A field of 120 boys are encouraged to sign up, with the great value �75 entry fee featuring the three competitive rounds, a practice round, breakfast & lunch vouchers, a player gift pack and a hot dog and family fun golf night on the evening of Saturday 28 April.
Spencer Henderson, Scottish Golf National Boys’ Coach and a great friend of Barrie’s, has played an active role in the formation of the event and hopes it is well supported.
He said: “Barrie did so much for boys’ golf, in particular, in Scotland, so I thought it would be a great tribute to run a tournament in his honour. We went to so many events together down the years so I knew what he liked and we’ve taken inspiration for Barrie’s event from the annual Sir Henry Cooper Junior Masters tournament in England.
“There is a real feel to that event, family friendly as well and we’re going to try and do the same at Blairgowrie, especially on the Saturday evening to get people together.
“The fact our event is WAGR-ranked will hopefully attract players, with the event also being on the Scottish Golf Boys’ Order of Merit. I’m just delighted we have managed to make it happen.”

Henderson hopes the event can blossom further and added: “Blairgowrie have been fantastic to work with and we look forward to raising funds through the Foundation for junior golfers across Scotland, who might not have the opportunity to play.
“I’m then hoping the event is going to grow to an international tournament over 72 holes in the future, with girls also involved. Barrie’s genuine passion was for under-16 and under-18 players and trying to help them develop and eventually see them play for Scotland and Great Britain and Ireland. He was boys’ captain for players like Bradley Neil, Connor Syme, Ewen Ferguson and Liam Johnston.
“A lot of the players that will be competing in April have also come through the Paul Lawrie and Stephen Gallacher Foundations, the work that they are doing is brilliant, and we just wanted an event to complement their activities.”

Other fund-raising events for The Barrie Douglas Foundation are lined up for later this year, including a sportsman’s dinner and a charity golf day.

Entries are now open for the Barrie Douglas Junior Masters so log on to www.scottishgolf.org/championships for more information.


Craig Ross in top 10 overnight on Evolve Pro Tour event in Spain

Craig Ross from Cambuslang shot a four-under-par 70 to be T7 overnight in the Evolve Pro Tour's La Serena event in the Murcia Region of south-east Spain.
Englishman Mark Young led a field of 58 competitors with a 58.


Lawrie and Taylor lead Scots in Palmares Classic VI

Craig Lawrie and Portugal-based fellow Scot Jay Taylor were T14 on two-under 70 after the first round of the Algarve Pro Tour's Palmares Classic VI
Other Scot's scores:
71 Alan Welsh (T29)
79 Ben Craggs (T77)

South Africa Tyler Hogarty led by three overnight after an outstanding round of nine-under  63.
There is a field of 99 players.


Five pro teams tie for first place at Nexus Data Systems better-ball

Five teams of two pros each tied for first place with eight-under-par 64s at the Big Johnson's Tour event, the Nexus Data Systems better-ball, at Dundonald Links today.
Our next event on The Golf Finance Winter Series OOM is on Friday 2nd March at Dunbar GC £60 to enter which includes breakfast and lunch. Entries will open on Wednesday morning.

Par 72
64 John Henry and Ronan Rafferty, Gavin Hay and Sam Binning, Scott Henry and Scott Borrowman, Michael Patterson and Paul O'Hara, Paul Shields and Danny Young
65 Conor O'Neil and Fraser McKenna 
68 Chris Currie and Jonathan Mullaney 
71 Chris Curran and Louis Gaughan 


Ewen Ferguson's 69 in Egypt has him in jt sixth place overnight

Former winning Walker Cup team member Ewen Ferguson from Bearsden was in joint sixth place with a two-under-par 69 in the Alps Tour's Red Sea Little Venice Open at Sokhna Golf  Club, Egypt today.
Two players, French amateur Antoine Moreau and Marc Dobias (Switzerland), jointly lead the field of 104 players with five-under-par 67s.



Sandy Scott from Nairn, a student at Texas Tech, finished joint 25th in a field of 133 players at the Wyoming Desert Intercollegiate golf tournament at the Classic Club, Palm Desert, California on Sunday.
Scott had rounds of 68, 77 and 70 for a one-under total of 215 over long par-72 course of 7,322yd.He finished 12 strokes behind the four players who tied for the pole position.
Texas Tech (837) finished runners-up to team title winners California (817) in a field of 23 teams.


Walker Cup player Paul McBride from Malahide, Dublin, a student at Wake Forest University, finished T25 in a field of 99 players at "The All-American" college tournament at the Golf Club of Houston at Humble, Texas.
McBride had rounds of 72, 69 and 72 over a par 73 course of 7,067yd.
He finished 12 shots behind the winner by two, Keenan Huskey (South Carolina) who had scores of 68, 68 and 65
Wake Forest (845) finished fifth in the team title competition won by Auburn (822) from Baylor (836) with Ole Miss (841)


Fraser Davren helps Eastern Florida State win Coastal Alabama Spring Invitational title

 Fraser Davren from Glasgow is second left on the above picture of the winning Eastern Florida State College team.

The Eastern Florida State College men's golf team won the Coastal Alabama Spring Invitational Sunday afternoon after a play-off.

The Titans finished the final round tied with Mississippi Gulf Coast at 591, sending the two teams to a one-hole playoff. All five players from each team went back out and the Titans were 1-under on the hole while Mississippi Gulf Coast was even, giving the Titans its first tournament title of the spring.

Sophomore Fraser Davren from Glasgow shot an even-par 72 to finish the tournament 1-under and claim medallist honours.
Teammate Beck Fox shot a 76 in the final round and finished tied for 6th while Gregory Darnellshot a 74 Sunday and finished tied for 13th. Kyle Decenzo finished tied for 19th in the tournament.
"Nice win for Fraser and good tenacity by the team to hang in there as the course played difficult today," Eastern Florida State College men's golf coach Jamie Howell said.

The Titans, who shot 298 as a team in the final round, will play in the Florida Tech Panther Invitational March 4-6 at Duran Golf Club.



Genesis Open winner Bubba Watson admits he had thoughts of retirement due to loss of form

Bubba Watson admitted he had considered retiring from golf before he returned to the winner's circle with a battling victory at the Genesis Open.
Watson lifted the trophy at Riviera in 2014 and 2016, but the left-hander had not won since as illness and a loss of form saw him tumble out the top 100 in the world rankings, prompting him to discuss retirement with his family.

An emotional Bubba Watson celebrated his 10th career title on the PGA Tour
An emotional Bubba Watson celebrated his 10th career title on the US PGA Tour
But he opted to continue his quest to reach his career goal of 10 US PGA Tour titles, and the 39-year-old was the most composed of the many contenders over the closing stages of the final round, making three birdies over the last eight holes to seal a two-stroke win.
"It's unbelievable," said Watson, who lost his overnight lead after an erratic outward 36 before keeping further bogeys off his card down the stretch, while making a pivotal birdie at the short 14th when he holed out from a greenside bunker.

"To do it twice was amazing, and then have a chance on the back nine on Sunday to do it again, and then to pull it off, that's very special.
"My goal has always been to get 10 wins, and there are so many emotions going through my head right now," added the left-hander, who was in tears after holing the winning putt in scenes reminiscent of his memorable first Masters victory in 2012.

Watson held his nerve on the back nine to clinch a two-shot win
Watson held his nerve on the back nine to clinch a two-shot win
"You never know if you're going to play well again, and you never know if you're going to lift the trophy. I thought about retirement, and I mentioned it about 10 to 12 times to my wife. We sat down and had many talks about it because physically I wasn't ready to play."
Watson has enjoyed an entertaining week in Los Angeles which included recording shows with chat-show legends Jay Leno and Ellen DeGeneres, while he also took part in the NBA All-Star Celebrity game at the Staples Center after his second round on Friday evening.

Martin Laird finishes T9 on 277 and won $180,000




Sunday, February 18, 2018

Tee times for Monday's Four ball, better ball at Dundonald Links

Draw for the Big Johnson's Tour Four-ball, better-ball tomorrow at Dundonald Links sponsored by Nexus Data Systems.

11.40 Michael Patterson and Paul O'Hara 
Jonathan Mullaney and Chris Currie 

11.50 Danny Young and Paul Shields 
Louis Gaughan and Chris Curran 

12.00 Sam Binning and Gavin Hay 
Fraser McKenna and Conor O'Neil 

12.10 Scott Borrowman and Scott Henry 
John Henry and Ronan Rafferty 

Sandy Scott slumps to a 77 in second round 

in California

Sandy Scott from Nairn, a student at Texas Tech, went into the final round of the Club Classic college tournament at Palm Desert, California sharing 29th place in a huge field of 135 competitors.
Scott has six birdies in an opening round of 68 but slumped to a one-birdie 77 for a two-round tally of 145 - 12 shots behind leader Dan Starzinki (Wyoming) (69-64).

(remember California is about 10 hours BEHIND UK time.



Dubliner McBride seven off the pace at 

Humble, Texas

Paul McBride, the GB and I Walker Cup team player, from Malahide, Dublin, a final-year student at Wake Forest University, went into the final round of "The All-American" 54-hole college event at Golf Club of Houston at Humble, Texas on the 141 mark after scores of 72 and 69 over the par-62, 7,067yd course.

Leading the field was Jovan Rebula (Auburn) on 134 (69-65) from Garrett May (Baylor) on135 and Keenan Huskey (South Carolina) with a pair of 68s for 136.
Paul McBride is pictured left


Luiten wins Oman Open by 2 shots from Wood

   Picture by courtesy of  Getty Images

Joost Luiten got the better of Chris Wood in a final-day battle to win his sixth European Tour title at the inaugural NBO Oman Open.
Al Mouj Golf has played host to some dramatic scenes on the Challenge Tour, hosting the season-ending NBO Golf Classic Grand Final, and did not disappoint on its European Tour debut.
Perfect conditions greeted the players for the fourth day in a row, with Luiten going out in the final group and holding a share of the overnight lead.
There were ten players within four shots of the lead as the final group reached the turn but it evolved into a shoot-out between Luiten and Wood on the back nine, with the experienced duo going toe-to-toe in the desert.
It was the Dutchman who prevailed, carding a 68 to get to 16 under 272 and finish two shots ahead of his English rival who closed with a 69 for 274. Luiten earned 233,235 euros; Wood 155,490 euros.

Frenchman Julien Guerrier finished third at 13 under after a 71, two shots clear of Spaniard Jorge Campiilo, Frenchman Alexander Levy and American Han Seung-su.

The victory is Luiten's first since he won his home event for the second time at the KLM Open in 2016 and moves him into the top ten of the Race to Dubai Rankings presented by Rolex, earning him a spot in the WGC - Mexico Championship.
"This is why you play golf, to hold trophies," he said. "It's been a great week.

"It's always tough to win out here, all these guys are so good and they keep putting pressure on you.

"Down the stretch I hit some nice shots, I made some nice putts and it was a nice battle with my friend Woody.
For Wood, the runners-up finish represents a welcome return to form after he had missed his first three cuts of the season.

A bogey-bogey finish on Saturday dropped Wood out of the lead but a smart approach into the first quickly had him into a share of top spot alongside Luiten.

Luiten then hit a perfect drive on the second and that allowed him to get close and make a birdie and he was soon three ahead.

The 32 year old stretched his advantage to two shots when he holed from the fringe on the third and an approach to tap-in range on the next gave him a seemingly comfortable cushion.

Wood rolled in a 15-footer on the sixth to make himself Luiten's nearest challenger and the leader made his first mistake of the day when he three-putted from off the green on the seventh after laying up.

Another three-putt on the next led to another bogey and dropped Luiten into a share of the lead with Wood.

The 2016 Ryder Cup player got up and down from the sand on the 12th to lead on his own but Luiten also took advantage of the par five and when he holed a 15-footer on the par three next, he was back ahead.

A beautiful bunker shot on the 16th set up another birdie for Wood and it was now a two-horse race between the leading duo.

Luiten holed a 25-footer on the par five to get his nose in front and when Wood dropped a shot ahead on the 17th after a poor tee-shot, Luiten was in control.
Guerrier matched his best European Tour finish from the 2014 Madeira Islands Open – Portugal – BPI as he bounced back from bogeys on the ninth and tenth with birdies on the 12th, 14th and 16th.

Campillo and Han both signed for rounds of 68, with Levy carding a 70 to sit a shot ahead of England's Robert Rock and Paraguayan Fabrizio Zanotti.

Scot Stephen Gallacher, Frenchman Benjamin Hebert and England's Matthew Southgate were then at nine under. Gallacher finished T9 on 279 and earned 28,362 euros.
On the same mark was Matthew Southgate who was in contention with a round to got but closed with a 75.
David Drysdale was the second best Scot with four steady rounds of 72, 70, 70 and 71 for 283 and a T23 finish. The Dunbar marn earned 14,974 euros.
Paul Lawrie finished T61 after a four-over par last round of 76 to tag on to scores of 71, 73 and 72. His total of 292 placed him T61 and earned the Aberdonian 3,709 euros.
Paul tweeted:
"76+4 today. Hit it ok but took four to get down twice from under 100 yards and putted beautifully all day but holed nothing. Massive thanks to everyone  . Your hospitality and golf course are first class
Bradley Neil from Blairgowrie and Marc Warren tied for 63rd place on 294. Neil had scores of 74, 69, 79 and 72, Warren 69 72 80 and 73. They both earned 3,429 euros.




Bubba Watson leads by one at Genesis Open

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Back to his day job, Bubba Watson began with a tap-in eagle at Riviera and finished with a 6-under 65 on Saturday to take a one-shot lead over Patrick Cantlay in the Genesis Open.
Watson, a two-time winner at Riviera, has gone two years since his last victory and has fallen out of the top 100 in the world.
But he loves L.A. — and not just the golf course.
Taking in the full entertainment this city offers, Watson took part in the NBA All-Star celebrity game Friday night and made the wrong kind of highlight when he passed up a jumper, drove toward the basket and was rejected by Tracy McGrady.
He also shot an air ball from just inside the top of the key.
Watson was much better with a golf club in his hand. He chipped in from short of the par-3 sixth green, made two more birdies to go out in 30, and then began the back nine with a birdie on No. 10, his least favorite hole at Riviera. The only blip was a bogey on the 15th.
Watson was at 10-under 203 and will be in the final group with Cantlay, the former No. 1 amateur in the world and polar opposite of Watson.
Cantlay thrives on his ability to keep his head on the shot in front of him, and to keep his emotions from swinging too much — swinging anywhere, really — in either direction. He ended his round with a 55-foot birdie putt for a 69 to get within one shot of Watson.
Cameron Smith (65), Kevin Na (67), Graeme McDowell (70) and Tony Finau (68) were two shots back. Suddenly in the mix was defending champion Dustin Johnson, who told his brother at the turn that he had 27 holes to show what he had. Johnson then shot 29 on the front nine for a 64 and was four shots behind.
As much attention as Cantlay’s long putt on the 18th gets, it was a series of pars on the front nine that saved him.
That started with a short-sided bunker shot and a 10-foot par putt. He missed the green left on the par-3 fourth hole and hit a lofted chip to 3 feet. He made a 10-foot par putt on No. 5 and another one that length at No. 7.
His best work came on No. 6, the par 3 with the bunker in the middle. It goes in the books as a two-putt par. It was so much more.
Cantlay pulled his tee shot to the left side of the green, with the pin on the other side of the bunker. Cantlay figured he could putt around the high side of the bunker and assure himself a 15-foot par putt from below the hole. Instead, he pitched it off the green and over the bunker, past the hole and up the slope, and then it rolled down toward the hole and narrowly missed.
It was so close that Cantlay began to run toward the low side of the bunker to watch, a rare display of excitement.
He kept a clean card on the back nine, opening with two birdies and closing with the big putt on the 18th, and he was in good position to win before family, friends and fans with UCLA gear that remember his days as a Bruin.
The nature of Riviera, with its firm turf after a week under the sun, made it difficult for anyone to get too far away. Fifteen players were separated by five shots going into the final round, though the task gets tough with Watson’s history.
He won in 2014 by not making a bogey over the final 36 holes. He won again in 2016 during another week rubbing shoulders with the stars.
Justin Thomas played before a mostly quiet crowd after two days with Tiger Woods, who missed the cut. Thomas overcame a few mistakes for a 67 and was four shots back. Phil Mickelson had a 67 and was five behind. Jordan Spieth had nine straight pars between birdies on the par 5s and shot 69. He was seven back.
Rory McIlroy, who also played with Woods, had a 73 and fell out of contention.
Watson didn’t mind getting stuffed by McGrady. His goal was to avoid getting hurt. And he didn’t seem overly concerned about such a crowded leaderboard going into the last day. Having gone two years since his last victory, all he wanted was a chance


Copyright © Colin Farquharson

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