Friday, November 13, 2015

Eight Scots in European Tour School Final field

Eight Scots are in the field of 156 for the European Tour Qualifying School Final Stage six-round tournament which tees off at PGA Catalunya, Girona near Barcelona in north-east Spain on Saturday.
They are: Ross Kellett, Scott Henry, Bradley Neil, Peter Whiteford, George Murray, David Law, Paul Shields and Jack Doherty.
Only the top 25 and ties at the end of the 108-hole marathon will gain playing rights on the European Tour.

Molinari and Dunne big names at European Tour Q School Final Stage over next 6 days

Edoardo Molinari arrives at PGA Catalunya Resort in North-east Spain eyeing redemption at this weekend’s European Tour Qualifying School Final Stage in the wake of a disappointing season which has put the former Ryder Cup star in danger of missing out on a European Tour spot after six years at the top table.
On the other end of the scale, Irishman Paul Dunne is hoping to put the icing on the cake of a life-changing year by securing a rookie season on The 2016 Race to Dubai, having bravely battled his way through every stage of the gruelling marathon so far.
The six-round (108 holes) examination begins tomorrow (Saturday) as 156 players chase The European Tour dream, with only the top 25 and ties at the conclusion of the event earning their place among Europe’s elite.
Italian Molinari, a two-time winner on The European Tour, has struggled this year, missing ten cuts in his 22 events and falling to 158th place in the Race to Dubai after a highest finish this season of tied 15th in the Tshwane Open.
However, form is temporary and class – the kind that saw the 34 year old earn a place in the victorious 2010 European Ryder Cup team – is permanent, and Molinari is hopeful that he can prevail over six gruelling rounds in Girona and re-qualify for The European Tour.
“My game is definitely in good enough shape,” said the former Challenge Tour Number One. “I’ve been hitting the ball really solidly lately so hopefully I can play six good rounds and that will be enough.
“Obviously this season I’ve played quite poorly and I’m finally hitting the ball better so I’m really looking forward to this week and having a good six rounds of golf to hopefully get my card back.
“It’s always a very long week, very stressful, and you need to be careful not to waste too much energy in the first few days because it’s almost like a marathon. You just have to be patient and play good golf and that will take care of everything else.
“Experience always helps but I think the most important thing is to play well, play good golf shots, and everything else will be fine.”
Dunne, meanwhile, is now widely regarded as one of the hottest up-and-coming talents in world golf after he shocked the sporting world by storming into the third-round lead at The Open Championship as an amateur in July.
His love affair with St Andrews Old Course continued at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship when he joined his 2015 Walker Cup team-mate Jimmy Mullen and Sweden’s Kristoffer Broberg in a share of the first-round lead.
While all of those experiences have made him one of the most talked about young stars in the game, Dunne knows that winning a European Tour card at PGA Catalunya Resort this week could rank as one of the most important achievements of the year – even if his profile now will likely result in some opportunities to play next year either way.
“So far it’s been good because I’ve got through every stage and I haven’t played yet this week so I can’t really compare it to those experiences yet,” said the 22 year old. “Hopefully it’ll be a good week but if it’s not, it’s obviously not the end of the world - I’ll still have playing opportunities next year.
“I’m just excited for the opportunity and hopefully I can play well, keep my composure and hit good shots at the right time, and hit the bad ones at the right time too. Everyone is going to hit bad shots so it’s a case of making par when you do. Time will tell but I’ll just take the week as it comes.
“I think I unpacked my bags this week for a little bit longer than usual. It’s a long week but the weather is good and the course is in great shape so I’m looking forward to it. It beats practising back in the wind and rain at home.
“It’s obviously a great opportunity and hopefully I can make the most of it but I’m just going to try and play well and see where it leaves me.”
A total of 26 different countries are represented at Final Stage this year, including such lesser known golfing nations as Slovenia and Malaysia, while 32 former European Tour winners are in the field, with 58 titles among them.
Three former Ryder Cup players arrive in northern Spain hoping to forge a path back toward the big time, with the older of the Molinari brothers joined in the field by Swede Jarmo Sandelin and Dane Soren Hansen.




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