Monday, March 16, 2009

HUGH HUNTER'S Clackmannan County News


The well-established Scottish boys' championship is the traditional main junior event of the new golf season and attracts a big entry of young hopefuls. This year is no exception: 292 entries have been received with handicaps 6.4 or better. This is 36 over the field limit of 256 and a reserve list of handicaps above 5.5 has been established.
The event goes to the classic links of Royal Aberdeen, the sixth oldest golf course in the world, and venue for the 2011 Walker Cup (the amateur match between Britain and America). From the back tees the course measures some 6,900 yards that’s only a few hundred short of many of the European Tour courses, but the organisers may be kind and shorten it.
There are three local hopefuls in the field --- Dollar’s Gary Chalmers, who tees off at 11.17 on Monday against Euan McIntosh (McDonald Ellon), Alloa’s Grant Dowie at 12.45 against Stewart Watt (Old Course Ranfurly) and Alva’s Lawrence Allan who has to wait till 9.13 on Tuesday to play J Burrows (Pitlochry).
County golfers will be wishing them the best of luck in their quest for the national title--- it's now 40 years since Tulliallan’s Robin Fyfe took the title at North Berwick!

The first 72-hole stroke play event of the 2009 Scottish amateur calendar is the Champion of Champions at Leven Links, and this year there are three spots for Clackmannanshire golfers - County stroke-play champion Scott Borrowman (Dollar), County match-play champion Gordon Lyons (Tulliallan) and the current Scottish seniors champion, Bob Stewart (Tulliallan).
If Callum Macaulay had stayed as an amateur, he would also have been in the field as the current Scottish amateur champion.
Scott Borrowman’s amateur ranking has gradually improved and at a position of 483 in the World Amateur rankings he is ranked 16th best Scot.


The Midland Alliance events are held over the winter season and are open to amateur and professional members of the association. The 2008-09 season has been hit quite badly by the weather, but local golfers feature in the amateur Order of Merit of the Alliance.
In top spot is Alloa’s Chris Westland with a considerable haul of voucher prizes. Next is Tulliallan’s Harry Salmond in 17th place and further down are Hugh Hunter, Michael Niven (both Alloa) and Bob Stewart (Tulliallan).

After a few weeks off the European Tour, Tulliallan’s Callum Macaulay is back in action and will be trying to improve on the good form he found in his initial events. He tees off in the Madeira Open this week followed by the European Tour events in Spain and Portugal.
The Madeira event is held over the new Porto Santo Golf Course (over 7000yd par-72) on the island to the west of Madeira - familiar to many as a holiday destination or visible in clear conditions en route to Tenerife.
His main objective is to move up the rankings, retain his European Tour card and build up experience. Local golfers will be wishing him well in this quest.

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