Friday, August 03, 2012


Tomorrow's 36-hole final of the Scottish amateur championship at Royal Dornoch will be contested by two unseeded players - San Diego University, California student Grant Forrest (Craigielaw), pictured right, Scottish boys match-play champion in 2010 and Under-16s title-winner before that, and Richard Docherty (Bearsden), pictured below, who spent most of the past four years at Lindenwood University, St Charles, Missouri and who won the Dunbartonshire county championship before heading north.
Forrest, who had his 19th birthday on June 19, was Freshman of the Year (2011-2012) in the West Coast Conference. Docherty is 22.
Forrest is No 305 in the World Amateur Golf Rankings. Docherty is No 2,236. Neither has ever won an SGU 72-hole Order of Merit event.
Both young men have obviously played very well this week to come through seven rounds of cut-and-thrust and though, on paper, the 2012 final does not have the appeal of the last two Scottish finals at Royal Dornoch - Steven O'Hara versus Craig Heap in 2000 and Dean Robertson versus Raymond Russell in 1993, it could surprise us all and be a match-play classic played out in front of, hopefully, a big gallery.
The last Scottish boys' match-play champion to win the Scottish men's title was, of course, David Law (Hazlehead). He did it in the same year (2009) and repeated his Scottish men's amateur championship triumph last year.
The first round will tee off at 8.30am.
Docherty halted the great run of North man Bryan Fotheringham (Inverness), beating him by two holes in the semi-finals after Fotheringham had held the lead in the early stage.
At 34, Bryan's legs were perhaps beginning to feel the strain at the end of a long and tiring week. His wife, a former British women's police golf champion, will be proud of him. 
In the morning Fotherham had removed the last seed from the championship, albeit the top one, Graeme Robertson (Glenbervie) in a quality match that would have graced the final. Both men were under par as Fotheringham reached the semi-finals for the first time with a one-hole victory.
Forrest, whose father died recently - it would have been his birthday, has used that as a spur to play to his best form. His dad would certainly have been proud of him this week, win or lose in the final.
Grant, North Berwick-based, beat Banff teenager Lewis Mutch (Duff House Royal) by 4 and 3 in the semi-finals, having beaten Fraser Moore 6 and 5 in the quarter-finals.


Bryan Fotheringham bt Graeme Robertson (No 1 seed) 1 hole.
Richard Docherty bt Craig Ross 1 hole.
Lewis Mutch bt Elliot Wilson 5 and 3.
Grant Forrest bt Fraser Moore 6 and 5.


Docherty bt Fotheringham 2 holes
Forrest bt Mutch 4 and 3.



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