Sport Golf

Thursday 22 March 2018

Lawrie digs deep to stay in mix after '10' disaster

Bernie McGuire

Like the condemned man, Peter Lawrie feasted on a dry bread roll and water after his crime of taking a '10' during the second round of the Maybank Malaysian Open.

Lawrie rattled up his five-over par figure on the par five, fifth hole after hitting successive drives out of bounds on the Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club course.

His caddy later remarked that Lawrie's first attempt at finding the fairway landed on an adjoining roadway and was last seen "headed into the city to visit the Petronas Towers."

However, the former Spanish Open champion regrouped superbly in the stifling conditions to record a level-par 72 and end his round at three under par. It was the first occasion Lawrie can recall he's taken double figures at any hole since turning professional some 13 years ago.

Lawrie was quizzed how does one regroup after taking a 10, and he broke out in a smile to respond: "I got onto the next tee and ate a bread roll and drank some water and then proceeded to hole a 20-footer for birdie.


"So, after my crime I was only allowed bread and water.

"It's a pity we weren't playing Stableford because I could just wipe the hole but the funny thing is that I am still three under even with a 10 on my scorecard."

Lawrie's second drive off the fifth tee pitched on a cart path and kicked straight left and also out of bounds.

He found the fairway with his fifth stroke, but his sixth found a bunker, from where he played a 52-degree wedge shot from 121-yards out that spun back some 20 feet off the green.

Lawrie's eighth was a chip that pulled up three feet short of the hole.

"I then said to my caddy that I have this for a nine and I then missed the putt," he laughed.

"I would have been 11 or 12 years of age when I last had double figures on a hole, but then if you take that 10 off the card and put me down for a par, I would be leading the tournament.

"It also is somewhat a sign of your mental toughness that you can put a score like the 10 out of your mind and then come out and birdie the next hole which is what I did.

"So overall it's been a great 35 holes and besides it is still only Friday."

Lawrie ended his round near lunch in a share of 20th position before there was a two-hour thunderstorm delay.

Spain's Alejandro Canizares emerged from the delay to card a 69 and move to eight-under-par and a stroke clear of Denmark's Soren Hansen and Philippine's Angelo Que who each signed off for 67.

However, Thailand's Kiradech Aphibarnrat eagled the 14th in near darkness and will resume his second round today at nine-under with four holes to play.

In contrast, Ireland's only other Malaysian starters, Darren Clarke and Gary Murphy, will both miss the cut from the $2m tournament when the second round is officially complete.

Clarke carded rounds of 73 and 77, with his second day effort spoilt by three bogeys and an 11th-hole triple bogey. However, Clarke intends remaining in the Malaysian capital to partake in a corporate day at the course on Monday.

"I could easily pack-up and jump on a flight tonight but I've been asked by the sponsors Maybank if I would stay around till Monday, and I am happy to do so," he said.

"Also there's no tournament for me next week, just a fly-fishing lesson that I am really looking forward to."

Murphy was among 30 players who had to be in place at 7.45am local time to complete their delayed opening round.

Murphy had been on the 18th green late on Thursday and staring at a four foot putt for par when a rules official sounded the siren to halt play immediately.

"The fellow could see that I only had a short putt to end my round but he still sounded the siren," said Murphy.

"But under the rules you have to stop immediately and it meant having to mark my ball and come back early today."

Murphy holed the putt but it did him little good because he was cut from the event with eventual scores of 78 and 79 that included three birdies, but also a pair of double bogeys.

Malaysian Open

Live, Sky Sports 1, 6.0am

Irish Independent

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