Friday, July 06, 2012


From Michael Gibbons
 At the age of 76 years young, Sir Bob Charles added another extraordinary chapter to his golfing legend at the European Senior Tour’s Bad Ragaz PGA Seniors Open by beating his age by an incredible ten strokes to move into a share of third place on four under par.
Charles’s incredible first round 66 – which smashes his own previous Senior Tour record of five strokes less than his age – started with a terrible drive into the left-hand rough at the Golf Club Bad Ragaz which led to a bogey five.
But the man from New Zealand – the first left-hander to win a Major at The 1963 Open Championship – then proceeded to put on a golfing master class as he rolled back the years and rolled home the putts to claim five birdies and join the six-way tie for third place, two strokes behind leader David J Russell.
“That was one of those dream rounds,” smiled Charles, who played alongside another 76 year old legend, Gary Player, who posted his own exceptional round of 72.
“I have just bettered my age by ten shots – I have never got anywhere near that figure before. It’s quite remarkable really. I hope it’s a record.
“I have had some great days in my career and this is one of them. I felt young again. My putting certainly reminded of the days of my youth. I hit a lot of good shots and never missed any short putts and that was the secret really. I made two really big 15-foot par putts to and they were crucial.
“I take a lot of satisfaction from today. These days that is the goal and today was, as I said, like a dream and one I will never forget.”
Stephen McAllister leads the Scottish challenge after a two under par 68 left him one stroke ahead of Sam Torrance and Bill Longmuir, while Gordon Brand Jnr matched Player’s two over par 72.
Par 70. Yardage 6183

64 D Russell (Eng);
65 M James (Eng);
66 P Fowler (Aus); D Smyth (Irl); B Charles (Nzl); M Martin (Esp); J Bland (RSA); T Thelen (USA);
67 D Hospital (Esp); G Manson (Aut);
68 P Mitchell (Eng); M Cunning (USA); K Spurgeon (Eng); R Gibson (Can); I Woosnam (Wal); T Price (Aus); C Williams (RSA); D Merriman (Aus); S McAllister (Sco);
69 B Longmuir (Sco); C Mason (Eng); G Wolstenholme (Eng); M Farry (Fra); N Job (Eng); S Torrance (Sco); A Forsbrand (Swe); D Durnian (Eng); G Cali (Ita); A Sherborne (Eng); A Fernandez (Chi);
70 T Johnstone (Zim); B Cameron (Eng); B Ruangkit (Tha); C Rocca (Ita); G Ryall (Eng); G Norquist (USA); M Kuramoto (Jpn); J Quiros (Esp); P Wesselingh (Eng); D O'Sullivan (Irl); T Elliott (Aus); S Cipa (Eng);
71 K Tomori (Jpn); J Harrison (Eng); J Rhodes (Eng); M Harwood (Aus); L Carbonetti (Arg); G Brand (Eng); G Ralph (Eng);
72 G Player (RSA); J Bruner (USA); B Smit (RSA); M Piñero (Esp); J Hall (Eng); D Cambridge (Jam); A Franco (Par); G Banister (Aus); G Brand Jnr (Sco);
73 P Walton (Irl); N Ratcliffe (Aus); M Belsham (Eng);
74 R Davis (Aus); Z Martinez (USA); S Van Vuuren (RSA); C Grenier (Aut);
75 D Creamer (Eng); B Lincoln (RSA);
76 A Garrido (Esp); V Garcia (Esp);
77 J Gould (Eng);
82 M Bembridge (Eng);
87 C Bisel (Fra);



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