Thursday, November 01, 2018

Crocker equals course record of 64 at

Challenge Tour Grand Final

Sean Crocker (USA) fired a course record-equalling 64 at Al Hamra Golf Club to join Adri Arnaus (Spain) on top of the Ras Al Khaimah Challenge Tour Grand Final leaderboard at 135 at the tournament’s 36-hole halfway point in the United Arab Emirates.
Robert MacIntyre is the leading Scot in T6 position on 137 with rounds of 71 and 66, one shot ahead of Aberdonian David Law who has had a pair of 69s.
American Crocker carded seven birdies against a lone bogey but chipped in for eagle at the last to sign for the eight under par score of 64, which equals the course record set by Marcel Schneider and Jurrian van der Vaart in the European Challenge Tour’s most recent trip to Ras Al Khaimah last year.
The 22 year old only began his Challenge Tour campaign ten events into the season, but following a trio of third place finishes late in the year, he arrived at the Grand Final with everything to lose, holding the second to last European Tour graduation spot as the Road to Ras Al Khaimah Number 14.
“My confidence has been high going into this week but there’s also a lot of nerves because I’m right on the bubble,” he said.
 “After my first round I put a bit of pressure on myself because the boys below me were playing well but my game is good so I just have to go out and play this week because everybody here is an amazing player.”
Crocker’s opening one under par round of 71 saw his projected Ranking move outside the top 15 yesterday. However, today he resurrected his chances of earning a life-changing promotion as he is now projected to finish as the Road to Ras Al Khaimah Number Four.
Those are projections though, and with half of a golf tournament still to play the pressure of achieving a lifelong dream will surely weigh on every player through the final 36 holes.
Arnaus, who carded a three under par 69 today after a first-round 66, is fighting a different battle this week. The Spaniard began the week as Road to Ras Al Khaimah Number Nine and is chasing his first win on the Challenge Tour, which would move him to second place in the Rankings and may just garner him starts in the biggest events on the European Tour next season.
“It would be really special for me to end the season with a win,” said the 24 year old. “But I’m trying not to focus on that, I just want to keep doing the things that I’m doing.
“I’ve played some solid golf and it’s been a lot of fun out there. I’ve put myself in a nice position heading into the final days so I need to keep it up.”
Sitting on nine under par, the co-leaders are being aggressively pursued by a group of three players only one shot back on eight under par.
Frenchmen Romain Langasque and Victor Perez each managed rounds of 69 on Day Two, while Portugal’s José-Filipe Lima’s six under par 66 moved him ten spots up the leaderboard to join them in third place.
England’s Tom Murray is currently the last man inside the top 15, as he was at the beginning of the week, and as things stand Portugal’s Pedro Figueiredo will be the one narrowly missing out on a European Tour card as he is projected to finish the season in 16th

Scots' scores
137 Robert MacIntyre 71 66 (T6)
138 David Law 69 69 (T8)
139 Liam Johnston 69 70 (T11)
141 Grant Forrest 71 70 (T16)
142 Calum Hill 70 72 (T18)
143 Ewen Ferguson 70 73 (T28)


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