Wednesday, July 07, 2010

EUROPEAN TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP - Holders Scotland fail to secure top flite place

(from the SGU website)

Scotland’s bid for a second successive European Amateur Team Championship title ended at the first hurdle as Scott Knowles' side missed out on a place in the top flight match play stages by a single shot in Sweden.

The Scots six-man side, who were tied third after yesterday’s opening round, faltered to a 21-over par aggregate over the two days, with hosts Sweden taking the final qualification berth one shot ahead on 20-over par.
James Byrne was the only Scot to break par on a testing day over the Osterakers course after he led the way with a fine three-under par 69, leaving the Arizona State student tied third in the individual standings. New cap Greg Paterson bogeyed the final hole to finish with a five-over par 77, while Ross Kellett struggled on the inward nine to post a 78, the same score as Michael Stewart.

Peterhead’s Philip McLean was needing to par in his inward nine to secure the Scots’ qualification, but a costly run of three consecutive bogeys from the 14th left him with an eight-over par 80. McLean’s North East team-mate Kris Nicol also found the going tough, as a disastrous quadruple bogey seven at the par three 17th led to a second round 81, leaving the Scots in the second flight of the match play stages.

Denmark and Italy headed the qualifiers, with aggregate totals of one-over par, while England finished in third spot to set up a quarter-final tie with Finland.

Scotland will face 2007-08 champions Ireland in the second flight after they also missed out on a top eight berth, while a strong French side led by Scottish Stroke Play champion Romain Wattel were another surprise exclusion from the top flight as they finished alongside the Scots in a tie for ninth spot.

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