Monday, August 11, 2014


   Dave-Lee Thomson (Nairn Dunbar) with Scottish Brewers’ Trophy, William Barron (Nairn    Dunbar) with Nairn Dunbar Trophy, Rob Storey (Blyth) with K M Cameron Salver

Nairn Dunbar 5-Day Open a spectacular success

Last week saw the successful running of the 37th Nairn Dunbar Open Tournament, sponsored by Calterdon BMW. On Monday, 208 players teed up for their chance at glory, including 140+ visitors from all over Scotland and the UK and from as far afield as Florida.
In a testing westerly wind, scoring on the first day was high, however Edward Shannly (Linlithgow) demonstrated what could be done with an excellent round of 69 (-3), closely followed by Niall Young (Insch) and home club players Freddie Brown and William A Barron with 71 (-1). 
In the handicap competition, Dave-Lee Thomson and Craig Edwards, both Nairn Dunbar, both shot brilliant 66 (-6) rounds to lead the rest of the field by four shots.
Tuesday saw the wind change direction and the easterly tested players to the maximum. Over half the field took double bogey or worse on the testing fourth hole as the leaders fought hard to maintain their challenge.
First off, Freddie Brown set the early pace with another 71 (-1) for a 142 (-2) total. Although threatened by defending champion, Sean Burgess (Nairn) with 144 (level), the total stood throughout the day until bettered only by the last player, Nairn Dunbar club champion William A Barron whose 70 (-2) for 141 (-3) secured him the Centenary Bowl for 36 hole aggregate scratch.
In the handicap section for the Caberfeidh Trophy, home club players dominated – taking six of the top seven spots. Leading scorer was Fraser MacKenzie (11) whose second day 68 catapulted him into the lead with 73 + 68 = 141 (-3) ahead of Freddie Brown (142) and Michael Howitt and Iain Johnstone (both 143).
The match-play stages, as always, produced their fair share of good golf, tight matches along with the occasional shock. The scratch semi finals saw top seed Barron matched against Nairn Dunbar veteran David Bunker; while defending champion Burgess was pitted against rising star Brown. 
In the first semi-final, it was nip and tuck to the end, Barron winning on the final hole. The second semi-final was equally close with Burgess shading it 2 and 1
The Friday afternoon final for the Nairn Dunbar Trophy saw some of the best golf of the week, with Burgess establishing an early lead and maintaining this through the first 13 holes.
A three-putt on the 370yd 14th, however, turned the tide, bringing Barron back to all square and powerful golf from the home favourite thereafter quickly concluded the match with a 2 and 1 victory over the defending champion. 
Barron becomes only the fifth player to complete the Nairn Dunbar Club Championship/Open Tournament double, following in the footsteps of his own father, William B Barron (1985) as well as John Ellen (1980), Lorne Miller (1997) and Russell Knox (2003). 
Speaking at the prizegiving in the evening, an emotional Barron noted how close he was to not playing in the event, due to work commitments, but reflected that he was glad that he did!
In the low handicap section, for the K M Cameron Salver, the draw threw up a home half and a visitor half – with the first semi-final being competed beteen Ross Coupland and Hong Sun Tan of Nairn Dunbar (Coupland winning 4 and 3); while the second semi-final was between Rob Storey (Blyth) and Andrew Wilkie (Ealing) – Storey winning 4 and 2. 
The final was a tight affair with Coupland taking an early lead before being pegged back steadily by Storey. All coming down to the final hole, Storey calmy stroked his par putt in from ten feet to secure a well-appreciated victory and reaffirming the strong link that has developed between Nairn Dunbar and its visiting players.
The high handicap section, for the Scottish Brewers’ Trophy, produced very close home versus away semi-finals with Dave Brown (Nairn Dunbar) defeating Kevin Long (Blyth) by one hole; and Dave-Lee Thomson (Nairn Dunbar) defeating Tim Brown (Dunstan Hall) by the same margin
The final, however, was a more one-sided affair with Thomson dominating from the start, securing a 7 and 6 victory over his fellow member.
In closing, tournament Director, George Anderson, thanked all the competitors – particularly those visiting from far afield – and praised the course and the club staff for making the 37th Five-Day Open one of the most memorable.
Thanks to new sponsorship, players had had a chance to win a new BMW or, failing that, a consolatory pie from Ashers – Scottish Bakers of the Year 2014. Although no cars had been won, many pies – along with putts – had been sunk with considerable relish! Next year’s event, running from  August 3 to 7 promises to be better still!


Post a Comment

<< Home

Copyright © Colin Farquharson

If you can't find what you are looking for.... please check the Archive List or search this site with Google