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Today was the first round of the Network Veka Classic at De Vere Mottram Hall, my day started on the par 5 10th at 8.10.  A good opening tee shot was followed by a lost ball after a wild 2nd  shot leaked into the heavy rough bordering the fairway, so after playing my fourth shot  I wedged on to 10ft and the putt slipped by. A double bogey was not the ideal start, but plenty of holes to pull shots back. A good tee shot on the 11th left me with 25ft for birdie that I rolled 3 feet past and a good return putt meant a par. A pushed tee shot on 12 left me in the right rough with a line to the green through two trees unfortunately I pushed my approach and it clipped one of the over hanging branches in front of me and sent the ball just left of the green from here my pitch came up around 9ft short and I hit a good putt without it dropping. After two good shots into the tough par 4 13th I was left with an outside look at birdie which I left just short, but a tap in par. An aggressive tee shot down 14 left me with 65yds to go which I hit a little left and a little long and after a tentative putt I was down for par. Another good tee shot down 15 followed by a good pitch to about 7ft gave me my first real chance for birdie after picking my line I hit the putt with the pace I wanted to, only to watch the putt slip by on the low side. A good tee shot on 16 took a big bounce and went off the back of the green, from here I hit a nice chip that just ran out to 5ft, I rolled it in dead centre for a solid par. A perfect tee shot on 17 left me with 183yds into the green from here I hit a solid 6 iron that never left the flag but came up short, from here I two putted for a par. Onto 18 a very good chance to pull a shot back and after a good tee shot I was left with 213yds into the green from which I hit a solid 5 iron that finished at the back of the green around 80ft from the hole, I hit a really good first putt to around 3ft which I knocked in for a much needed birdie. After that birdie the first hole was another good chance for birdie a good tee shot left me with 178yds into the par 5, after hitting a 6 iron 18ft right of the flag I had a good look at eagle which I left one roll short of going in. A poor shot down two left me with 150yds into the wind after a good shot in the birdie try from 10ft stayed on the high side. A poor approach into 3 left of the green was rescued with a good up and down and no harm done. I would then give myself birdie chances on the next 4 from around 30ft, which all resulted in pars. A good drive and a lob wedge to 5 feet on 8 gave a great chance at birdie, I hit a good putt here but it stayed above ground. Onto the last hole and a great chance for birdie or eagle especially after a great tee shot left me with 188yds to go unfortunately I hit a very poor 5 iron that plugged in the back face of the left bunker, from here it was a good shot to get it onto the green and a good two putts later I was done with my round. An opening 73 which wasn’t too bad after the first 3 holes but I still felt I could have been a lot better.  Tomorrow I tee off at 1.10 and look forward to posting a score that will move me up the leaderboard.

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