Friday, July 29, 2016

Unranked US college students meet in Scottish Amateur Final at Balgownie

The best of Burgess - KOs  favourite Syme to 

reach final, plays 19th hole winner Duncan

Nairn's Andrew Burgess produced a marvellous display of sub-par golf to beat the favourite, World No 30 Connor Syme (Drumoig) by one hole in a semi-final of rare quality.
Burgess, pictured left, had seven birdies, including one at the 18th which took him, against all the odds at the start of the week, into the final of the 89th Scottish amateur championship.
The Nairn player would have had roughly a round of 66 had it been a stroke-play round. 
Although beaten, Syme played very well too. He had six birdies to his credit.
The Nairn player, whose father Andy is general manager at Meldrum House Hotel and golf course, Oldmeldrum, is a student at Armstrong State University, Savannah in Georgia.
This performance in reaching Saturday's 36-hole tops anything else Burgess has appeared in his golf career today. 
The other finalist is also a student at an American college.
 Windyhill's George Duncan, who attends Lincoln Memorial University at Harrogate, Tennessee, beat twice Tennant Trophy winner Alasdair McDougall (Elderslie) at the 20th hole with a 5 to 6.
Duncan, pictured right, 3 up after eight holes but one down after 16 holes, squared the match with a par 3 at the 17th.The 18th was halved in 5s, the 19th in 4s before Duncan, several times Windyhill club champion, won through with a 5 to 6 at the 20th.
Neither Duncan nor Burgess has a World Ranking. 
Saturday's 36-hole final will tee off at 8.30am.
There is no admission charge for spectators and car parking, although limited, is also free of charge.

Andrew Burgess (Nairn) bt *Connor Syme (Drumoig) 1 hole.
  Syme 2 up after 6, having won the first and fourth with birdies  All square after 10. Both players have had 4 birdies. 
  Burgess birdied the 13th to go one up but bogeyed the next to be pulled back to square. Syme birdied the 15th to go one up.
 Both players have had six birdies in a quality match.
 Burgess won the 16th with a par to level the match again.
Burgess produced his seventh birdie at the 18th to win the hole and a place in the final. The classic semi-final produced 13 birdies between the pair.

George Duncan (Windyhill) bt Alasdair McDougall (Elderslie) at the 20th.
  Duncan 2 up after 5, having won the first and second (with birdie)
  Duncan 3 up after 8, 2 up after 9, having had eagle 3 at 6th and      birdie 2 at 8th.
  Duncan 3 up with a birdie 2 at the eighth but bogeyed the ninth to lose it and go back to two up. 
McDougall won the 13th with a par and the 14th with a bogey to be all square. McDougall won the 16th with a par to regain the lead but bogeyed the 17th to be all square again. The 18th was halved, also the 19th before Duncan won the 20th and the match with a 5 to a 6.

Burgess v Syme, McDougall v Duncan in this 

afternoon's semi-finals

Alasdair McDougall (Elderslie), winner of the prestigious Tennant Cup 72hole Order of Merit tournament in 2014 and 2015, scored the biggest win of his career at Royal Aberdeen's Balgownie links this morning.

McDougall (pictured) ended the reign of Glencruitten left-hander Robert MacIntyre, the 2015 champion, in the quarter-finals, McDougall winning by 4 and 3 with excellent figures - two under par for the holes played.
McIntyre is ranked No 22 in the World, McDougall No 884. 

US college student Andrew Burgess (Nairn), whose father is general manager at Meldrum House Hotel and golf course, won the all-North quarter-final against Jeff Wright (Forres).
Wright's record on the North open tournament circuit entitled him to start favourite in this tie but Burgess (pictured left) got his nose in front early and stayed there. He was roughly one over par at the finish in winning by 2 and 1. 
In this afternoon's semi-finals, Burgess, who will be a third-year student at Armstrong State University, Savannah, Georgia, when he returns there next month, will play Connor Syme (Drumoig).
Syme won the seeded clash against Craig Howie, thus ending the Peebles player's hopes of adding to the national title he won four years ago at Murcar Links - the Scottish boys' championship.
Syme led throughout and  won by 2 holes after being 3 up at the turn. He had four birdies to three by Howie.  

There are two US college students in the last four, George Duncan (Windyhill and Lincoln Memorial University at Harrogate, Tennessee) staging a tremendous fightback over the last few holes to join Burgess in the semi-finals.
Windyhill GC champion three times, Duncan, pictured,  was three down after 13 to Malcolm Pennycott (Royal Burgess) from Arran, but then won the 14th, 16th, the 17th (with a birdie) and the 18th to squeeze through by one hole to play McDougall in the semi-finals.

Andrew Burgess (Nairn) bt Jeff Wright (Forres) 2 and 1.
    Burgess 2 up after 7, 2 up after 10, 2 up after 13, 3 up after 14. Burgess 1 over par at finish

*Connor Syme (Drumoig) bt *Craig Howie (Peebles) 2 holes.
      Syme 2 up after 12, 1 up after 16

Alasdair McDougall (Elderslie) bt *Robert MacIntyre (Glencruitten) 4 and 3
    McDougall 2 up after 12. MacIntyre bogeyed 14 and 15.
    McDougall 2 under par for holes played.

George Duncan (Windyhill) bt Malcolm Pennycott (Royal Burgess) 1 hole.
   Pennycott 2 up after 11, 3 up after 13. Duncan won 14, 16, 17 (with birdie) and 18. Duncan approx 3 over par at finish

*denotes seeded player in blue print

World rankings of last eight in Championship:
22 Robert MacIntyre
30 Connor Syme
71 Craig Howie
583 Jeff Wright
884 Alastair McDougall
2,854 Malcolm Pennycott
Andrew Burgess
George Duncan



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