Thursday, July 21, 2016

Woody Austin's late 68 breaks leaderboard
 logjam in Senior Open at Carnoustie

with some additional words by Colin Farquharson

 American Woody Austin, three times a winner on the US Seniors Tour in the Spring,  came in late on the opening day with a four-under-par 68 to break a logjam at the top of the leaderboard in the Senior Open Championship at Carnoustie.
Six-footer Austin, 52, birdied the first and third, then stuttered with bogeys at the ninth and 10th. But the man from Tampa, Florida came again with a bogey-free inward half of 33, studded with birdies at the 11th, 12th, 14th and 16th.

"Senior golf, certainly on the Champions' Tour, is all about putting. At our age we all know how to play the game. So it comes down to a putting contest every week," said Austin, pictured. 
Seven  golfers carded first rounds of three under par 69s.
The Americas are dominant with five representatives in the top eight.
Mexico’s Esteban Toledo was five under par going into the final two holes, but consecutive bogeys meant he finished with a first round 69.

Paraguayan Carlos Franco also scored a 69 on a benign day at the feared Angus links. The over-50s are playing a course of 7,345yd. If the wind blows, it could change the picture dramatically.
Franco, brother of European Senior Tour member Angel, secured his place in the 30th edition of the Senior Open after qualifying at Panmure Golf Club on Monday.
“To shoot three under par on a links course is not very easy, especially at Carnoustie,” Franco said. “We were lucky with the weather today, so you have to take your opportunities and make a good score.
“I’m so happy because it’s been so long since I shot three under par in a Major.”
McCarron, a year on from making his debut on the over-50s circuit, joins Franco at the top of the leaderboard.
“I’m very happy,” the American said. “Any time you can go bogey-free at Carnoustie is something special. Obviously, we didn’t have a lot of wind today, but it was enough to keep you guessing.
“I love playing over here. I played the Scottish Open in 1996 here at Carnoustie and just fell in love with this style of golf. It’s my favourite style of golf – you can be very creative.
Bernhard Langer, who goes in search of his third Senior Open title, scored a one under par 71 and crowd favourite Miguel Angel Jiménez is one of five players in joint ninth  place after shooting two under par 70. Marco Dawson started the defence of his Senior Open title with a level par 72.
Top Scot is Robert Arnott is joint 24th place with a 72 (35-37), despite a double bogey 6 at the 17th. Also on 72 is Andrew Oldcorn who had late birdies at the 14th and 16th in halves of 38-34.
Tom Watson and Colin Montgomerie, two men expected to be nearer the top than the bottom are lying T88 after both had 76s, one ahead of Sam Torrance and Sandy Lyle.
Banchory exile Bruce Davidson, based in American for many years and a qualifier at Panmure earlier in the week, had a 78 to be sharing 118th place.
Davidson's caddie Jonathan Black, who plays Panmure regularly said: "Bruce took an awful lot of putts today. He wasn't getting close to the pin with his approach shots and three-putted several times from long range. Still, tomorrow's another day."

Par 72. Yardage 7,345
68 W Austin (USA)
69 T Bryant (USA), S McCarron (USA), C Franco (Par), J Durant (USA), E Toledo (Mex), M O'Meara (US), P Fowler (Aus).

70 M A Jimenez (Spa)
72 R Arnott (Sco), A Oldcorn (Sco), J Daly (USA) (T24)
73 S Savage (Sco), I Woosnam (Wal), T Lehman (USA) (T40)
74 L Mann (Sco) (T52)
75 R Drummond (Sco) (T73)
76 T Watson (USA), C Montgomerie (Sco), G Manson (Sco) (T88)
77 S Torrance (Sco), S Lyle (Sco) (T103)
78 B Davidson (Sco) (T118)
85 M Lang (Sco) (T143). 




08.30 A Oldcorn, N Sugai, P Tallent (am)

09.00 J Parnevik, M O'Meara, C Stadler
09.20 J Daly, C Montgomerie, T Watson
09.30 M A Martin, P Fowler, W Austin

12.10 R Drummond, B Davidson, B Henninger
12.30 D Gilford, F Funk, C Franco

01.00 S Torrance, J Sindelar, C Parry
01.40 I Woosnam, J Van de Velde, T Lehman
01.50 B Langer, M A Jimenez, M Dawson 



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