Thursday 21 September 2017

Agony as Higgins misses Open slot by a shot

WATERVILLE'S David Higgins endured agony yesterday as he narrowly missed out on qualifying for the British Open.

Higgins' total of five-under was one shot short of the qualifying mark at St Annes Old yesterday as former Ryder Cup pair Barry Lane and Paul Broadhurst, aged 52 and 46 respectively, both made it in.

Broadhurst, whose round of 63 at St Andrews in 1990 has still to be bettered in any major, won the 36-hole final qualifying event with a seven-under-par tally.

And with only three of the 72 players going through to Royal Lytham in a fortnight, Lane's second-round 70 enabled him to finish joint second on six-under with Argentina's Rafa Echenique.

Young amateur Gavin Moynihan of The Island finished joint 23rd with a level-par aggregate.

At Hillside it was an English trio who came through -- former European Tour winner Warren Bennett, 2009 Walker Cup player Dale Whitnell and Kent's Steven Tiley.

Steve Alker won at West Lancashire on seven under, but fellow New Zealander Michael Campbell, US Open champion seven years ago, shot level par -- five too many to be in a play-off

Steven O'Hara and Scott Pinckney survived the play-off at West Lancs, while at Southport and Ainsdale the winner was Dane Morten Orum Madsen, but there was disappointment there for former Tour star Nick Dougherty.

The Liverpudlian lost his card last season and was still in with a good chance after an opening 70, but followed it with a 74. Glasson's Colm Moriarty could only finish in a tie for 10th.

A play-off was needed here as well and saw Elliot Saltman and Hoylake professional Ian Keenan

squeeze through.

Irish Independent

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport