Saturday, May 15, 2010

North-east seize initiative in area team opener

Scottish Golf Union Press Officer
The North-east justified their tag as pre-championship favourites with a strong showing on the opening morning of the new-look Moneygate Scottish area team championship at Kinross.
Scotland star Philip McLean led the team from the front firing an impressive four-under par 69 on the Bruce course. The Peterhead man – winner of last month’s Edward Trophy – got off to a flyer with consecutive 3s at the opening three holes and added a birdie at the eighth to reach the turn in four-under. He spilled a shot the 12th but bounced back with a birdie at the 15th to be pleased with his opening round:
“I played steady golf for most of the morning and I’m pleased with my round. Overall the team has performed well this morning so hopefully the boys can come keep it going this afternoon. The new format seems to be popular among the players and it’s shaping up for a good weekend.”
McLean’s in-form team-mate Kris Nicol, fresh from runner-up finishes at the Lytham Trophy and Irish Stroke Play, looked set to continue that form reaching the turn in three-under par. However the Fraserburgh man’s touch deserted him on the back nine to finish with a level-par round of 73. Accumulatively, the North-east were one-under par for the morning rounds to seize the first round initiative.
Former Scottish youths champion Scott Borrowman blasted eight birdies in a superb six-under par 67 on the Bruce course to record the morning’s best individual score. The Clackmannanshire star took full advantage of the par-5s, with birdies at each of them and a birdie three on the final green delighted the Dollar golfer:
“It was nice to finish with a birdie after a very enjoyable round. Yesterday was the first time I’d played the course and it’s good fun to play, with lots of par fives and birdie chances on offer. I started really well the holed a great 20-foot putt on the seventh for par which kept my momentum going.”
“I’ve been really working hard on my game over the past month and it’s starting to pay off. Now would be the ideal time to hit form with this event and some big championships coming up. I like the new format and hopefully I can help the team get through to tomorrow’s knock-out stages.”
Lothians, the event’s most successful Area team, put in a solid opening round performance, with a fine two-under par on the more difficult Montgomery course from Craigielaw’s Mark Hillson, while Scottish boys champion Grant Forrest posted a one-under par 72 on the Bruce.
Former British boys finalist Fraser Fotheringham from Nairn opened with an excellent three-under par 70, while it was a mixed bag for defending champions Renfrewshire with the Kilmalcom duo of Matthew Clark and Andrew Farmer shooting rounds of 70 and 71 respectively.




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