The Scottish Amateur trophy (Crail Golf/Twitter photo)
The match-play bracket is set at Crail Golfing Society for the Scottish Amateur. Stuart McLaren gained momentum in the second round with an 8-under 61 that was the low round of the day and sent him to the top of the leaderboard for the No. 1 seed. It would have been a course record for Crail’s Balcomie Links but for the fact that David Rudd set a new one a day earlier with an opening 60.
With his low round, McLaren finished at 12-under par for stroke play and one shot ahead of two chasers, Eric McIntosh and Darren Howie, who were both at 11 under.
Speaking to Scottish Golf after his second round, McLaren said, “Crail is a course that really suits my eye, so it has been good fun to play here in such a big competition. I have been playing well this past month and won the East of Scotland which was nice, and I know that I am playing some really good golf at the moment.”
With all 68 players qualifying for the match-play stages shooting by shooting below par, McLaren knows that it is key to take the next phase one step at a time.
“I don’t really want to put too much pressure on myself in terms of expectations for the next few days. I am playing good golf but don’t want to get ahead of the game, it is just important I keep trying to replicate the form I have had over the past few weeks.”
All of the match-play ties will be contested over Crail’s Craighead Links.
Defending Champion Euan McIntosh was one of the biggest movers on day two, climbing 98 spots up the leaderboard to keep his hopes of defending the Scottish Men’s Amateur title alive.
“There was no real difference to yesterday in terms of my approach, I was just able to putt better which helped. I know that tomorrow will be a tough challenge, so it is just a case of seeing what happens over the next few days.”
Michael Smyth was also able to jump 54 spots on Wednesday after tying the new Balcomie course record set by Rudd yesterday. The Royal Troon member had just one bogey in his nine-under par round of 60.
As for Rudd, a second-round 78 dropped him considerably down the leaderboard and into a tie for 33rd. Liam Duncan, who had opened with 61, followed with 73 and was tied for 14th.
Quotes and information from Scottish Golf used in this report
ABOUT THE Scottish Amateur
The Scottish Amateur Championship began in
1922 and has witnessed many famous victors,
including legendary amateurs Ronnnie Shade
and Charlie Green as well as some of the stars
of the modern game, Colin Montgomerie and
Entry to the Championship is open to any male
golfer who was either born in Scotland, has
Scottish parentage, permanent residency in
Scotland for not less than 5 years and has not
played international golf or competed in a
closed Championship for any other country
other than Scotland. The starting field shall be
256 and, in the event of an over-entry, the
number shall be reduced in order of exact
handicap. Each match shall consist of one
round of 18 holes except the final which will be
played over 36 holes.
View Complete Tournament Information