Friday, January 19, 2018

Paul Casey shines but resents 'totally 
unnecessary' slow-play warning
ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates – Paul Casey picked up shots on the field and a slow play warning in the second round of the $3 million Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship.
Welcome back to the European Tour, Paul.
Casey, making only his second European Tour start after three years in exile, returned a seven-under-par 65 to lie three shots behind leader Thomas Pieters. 
“I hit a lot of quality golf shots,” Casey said. “To be honest it could’ve been better than it is, but I’m not complaining. I’m happy.”
Casey had to perform to keep pace with Pieters and Fisher in the group ahead.
“You see Thomas Pieters and Ross Fisher, a lot of firepower, Ryder Cup players, on the top of the leaderboard, and I know they’re not going to back down. For me it was foot down. I was trying to get to double digits.”
Casey has 13 European Tour wins, including two Abu Dhabi titles, but he hasn’t won anywhere in the world since the 2014 KLM Open. He’s due.
“There’s been attention on me this week because of rejoing the European Tour, but I’m here because I want to win. I’m not going to have that many opportunities in Europe to win because I’m still going to be focussed on the U.S.
“I’m putting pressure on myself with the opportunities I have in Europe. Let’s capitalise. I’ve won a lot of times in Europe, but there’s a lot of guys who’ve never seen me play.
“I’d like to show them what I’m capable of. I hope it’s a really big win. I hope it’s a major victory.”
The only downer in Casey’s round was a slow play warning on the seventh hole. He wasn’t pleased.
“It was totally unnecessary,” he said. “We waited for a ruling on number five for about five minutes. We allegedly lost two minutes on number six and then we were put on the clock when we had been waiting on two earlier. It was unnecessary.”
Casey gave as good as he got, letting the official know he wasn’t happy.
“Maybe it was unnecessary roughness by me,” he quipped.
But no roughness in Casey’s game.

Abu Dhabi-based Scot  Tom Buchanan mustered up strong support. on day two of their campaigns.

Although unable to make the cut, Buchanan brought with him a voluble crowd of supporters from his home club of Al Ain. Accompanied by the applause one might expect for a professional top ten player, Buchanan finished on the 9th green with great cheers from his friends and family.

Buchanan described his second round performance as “ropey”, but was quick to appreciate the following he’s gained:

”Unbelievable. Incredible. There’s a big following from everywhere, which is obviously great, and for them to be here is something I’ll never forget.”



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