Monday, November 21, 2011


Hutcheon and Patrick on one-under 70, five off lead
Reigning champion Greig Hutcheon shrugged off a bad back to make a solid start to the defence of his Titleist PGA Play-Offs title with a one-under-par 70 in Turkey.
The Banchory player trails leader Richard Wallis (Walmer and Kingsdown) by five shots following his score at Antalya Golf Club's PGA Sultan Course which was matched by fellow Scot David Patrick (Elie Sports Centre) and leaves them tied fifth alongside Guy Woodman.
Midland ace Matt Cort (Rothley Park) who recently added the Australian Futures title to his PGA Assistants’ crown won earlier in the summer, is second with a 67 with David Higgins (Waterlooville Links) shooting 68 and former play-offs winner Paul Streeter (Lincoln Golf Centre) carding a 69.
Hutcheon admitted he was delighted with his score after struggling with a sore back that he hopes a Turkish massage can put right.
“I really struggled but hit a couple of good shots at the end, holing long putts on 14 and 18 for birdies,” he said.
“It’s sore behind my right shoulder. I was working on it last night, I had a hot bath but couldn’t loosen it off and had a few drinks that didn’t work either.
“But my back loosened off as the round progressed but it is still bad and I'll see if a Turkish massage can sort it out.
“I am feeling a bit out of sorts but I’m pleased with the score because the way I felt I was swinging it I could have shot 75,76 or 77.”
Leader Wallis, back to back winner of the South Region Order of Merit, reeled off five birdies in six holes from the eighth to set the pace.
With a clutch of European and Challenge Tour spots available for the winner plus the top 10 qualifying for the BMW PGA Championship, the stakes were high as the 54-hole tournament got underway and South Region No. 1 Wallis signalled his intentions with a birdie on the par-4 first hole.
Two 18 foot birdie putts on eight and nine sparked his birdie blitz but perfectionist Wallis still had time to rue a couple he left out there.
“I can’t be disappointed with six under but I missed a couple of short ones – a three footer on 17 and an eight footer on the last,” said Wallis.

The Tartan Tour No 1 this year, Stephen Gray (Hayston) certainly did not enjoy any Turkish delight. In fact he had a nightmare – a round of six-over-par 77 to lie last of the 24 qualifiers at the end of the first day.
Hutcheon, pictured by Matt Lewis, courtesy of Getty Images (c), turned around a two-over-par card by birdieing four of the last five holes.
Patrick was also two over par after seven holes but covered the rest in three under par with birdies at the short eighth, long 16th and short 17th.
Gray, a model of consistently good scores during the 2011 season, had possibly his worst round of the year.
The Hayston man had double bogey 6s at the fourth and 14th and also dropped single shots at regular intervals. His only birdie in halves of 37 (two over) and 40 (four over) came at the long seventh.
Leader Wallis, from the Walmer and Kingsdown club had five birdies in six holes from the eighth on the Sultan Course. He leads by two from Matt Cort (Rothley Park), PGA assistants champion and recent winner of the Australian Futures title.
Hutcheon and Patrick are joint fifth.
Several European and Challenge Tour starts are available for the winner and the top 10 qualify for the 2012 BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth.

Par 71
65 Richard Wallis (Walmer and Kingsdown).
67 Matt Cort (Rothley Park).
68 David Higgins (Waterlooville Links).
69 Paul Streeter (Lincoln Golf Centre).
70 Greig Hutcheon (Banchory), David Patrick (Elie Sports Centre), Guy Woodman (East Berkshire).
71 James Ablett (Lee on the Solent), Michael Watson (Wessex), Simon Lilly (Wellingborough).
73 Christopher Gill (Exeter), Barrie Trainor (Ireland), David Shacklady (Mossack Hall), Stuart Brown (Orton Meadows), David Smith (Swinton Park), Brett Taylor (Chelmsford).
74 Alan Wainwright (Mid Yorkshire), Craig Goodfellow (Carlisle).
76 Robert Giles (Greenore), Damian Mooney (Ballyliffin).
77 Stephen Gray (Hayston).

+You can check out all the scorecards on the PGA website




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