Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Fox now leading Scot in PGA Play-offs

Graham Fox has replaced Greig Hutcheon as the leading Scot after three rounds of the PGA Play-offs over Saunton Golf Club's East Course in Devon today (Wed).
Fox, playing out of Clydeway Golf, has shot 73-68-68 for four-under-par 209 and is in second place, three shots behind England's Matt Cort who regained the lead with his third sub-70 score in a row (69-69-68) for seven-uner 206. 
Fox  bogeyed the first but then covered the next 17 holes in four under par with birdies at the third, short fifth, seventh and long 15th in halves of 34.
Hutcheon (Paul Lawrie Golf Centre Inchmarlo) was three over par after 11 holes today, bogeying the sixth, 10th, and 11th before birdieing the short 13th and long 15th in halves of 37-35 for a 72 and a joint fifth position on one-under 212.
Anglo-Scot Ian Campbell (Cheshunt Park) is tied 10th on 214 with rounds of 74, 69 and 71.
Paul O'Hara (North Lanarkshire Leisure) had no birdies to offset four bogeys in his third-round 75 for joint 20th place on 221 in the select field of 24.
First prize is £2,000 and the first three will gain automatic selection to the GB and I team for the PGA Cup match against the United States.  
Places in the fields for the BMW PGA Championship and British Masters also await the leading finishers.


Saunton Golf Club East Course, Devon.
Par 213 (3x71)
206 M Cort (Eng) 69 69 68
209 G Fox (Sco) 73 68 68
210 P Streeter (Eng) 69 68 73

212 G Hutcheon 71 69 72 (T5)
214 I Campbell 74 69 71 (T10)
221 P O'Hara 76 70 76  (T20)



Cort on course to make it third time lucky

Two-time runner up Matthew Cort has an elusive PGA Play-Offs title within his grasp after a flawless 68 at Saunton Golf Club.
The event hasn’t been kind to the Leicestershire golfer - he lost in a play-off in 2013 while last year was leading by one going up the last only to see a two-shot swing to Gareth Wright.
But the Beedles Lake-attached pro is well-placed to erase those disappointments, having carved out a healthy lead going into the final round of the £15,000 event.
Nearest challenger, Scotland’s Graham Fox, who also carded a 68, is three strokes back at four under for the tournament with overnight leader Paul Streeter slipping to third, a further shot back following a two-over-par 73.
Cort’s consistency has been reflected by just three bogeys in his opening 54 holes although he twice skirted with dropped shots at 17 and 18 thanks to some heavy-handed putting.
“On 17, I was on the green, about 35 feet away but the pin was cut on the right on a ridge so I’m thinking don’t leave it short, make sure you get it up the slope, and it took off. I de-greened it so it was nice to hole the one coming back,” said Cort.
“I have a good friend who says he wants me to be a bit more attacking on the putts – and that one was!
“On the last, it’s downhill into the wind, and I think my brain was a little bit fried with the pace so again that was a good two putt having left myself eight feet short but overall I played very steady.”
With a top ten finish and a spot in next year’s BMW PGA Championship virtually confirmed, Cort also has his sights on securing a place in the PGA Cup team – the top three automatically qualifying for the 2017 Great Britain and Ireland team which is captained by Saunton’s Lossiemouth-born Albert MacKenzie.
“I’ve played Wentworth the last four years and not done so well. That was the main target – to get into the top ten - now I have got PGA Cup to play for – which is a big deal as I’ve not played it before. I’ve watched the last two, thinking I wouldn’t mind a go.”
Despite his advantage, Cort is unlikely to take anything for granted with the East Course capable of biting at any moment.
“Links bunkers can get you in trouble – on the second I went for one and ended in greenside trap. It was lying pretty badly in the bottom of bunker with a steep face. I didn’t get it out but managed to hit my second bunker shot close and holed it for a par,” added Cort.
“Those kind of dangers lurk out there and if you start spraying it off the tee you can get into some bother. I’ve just got to go out and play half decent and get it done.”
With successive 68s following an opening 73, Clydeway Golf’s Fox has crept into contention and poses the most immediate threat to Cort and takes a refreshingly straightforward approach to proceedings.
“I just go out and play, hit it and find it, hit it and find it, I’m not really thinking beyond that,” said Fox.
“The golden carrot is dangling for you but I couldn’t care less at the moment, I’ll just go out and play and it will be what it will be.”
Roberts Coles (Maylands Golf and Country Club) is in fourth spot at two under with the trio of Phil Archer (Birchwood), Colm Moriarty (Drive Golf Performance) and Greig Hutcheon (Paul Lawrie Golf Centre Inchmarlo) at one under. Irish duo Neil O’Briain (Old Conna) and Damien McGrane are level par.

Leading third round scores
par 213 (3x71)
Pos    Scores                   Name                  Represents
1       69, 69, 68 (-7)    Matthew Cort       Beedles Lake
2       73, 68, 68 (-4)    Graham Fox         Clydeway Golf
3       69, 68, 73 (-3)    Paul Streeter        Lincoln Golf Centre
4       76, 65, 70 (-2)    Robert Coles         Maylands G and CC
T5     73, 70, 69 (-1)    Phil Archer           Birchwood
T5     69, 72, 71           Colm Moriarty      Drive Golf Performance
 T5    71, 69, 72           Greig Hutcheon    Paul Lawrie Golf Centre

Full leaderboard



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