This week I was down in Oxford for the Buildbase Open on the Europro Tour after shooting a 68 on Monday to finish in 4th at Andrew Murray’s Pro Am, I was looking forward to getting going.
So on Wednesday I started my first round at 8.32 from the 10th with the rain falling and the wind blowing. I hit a good opening tee shot down the middle and followed up with a lay up into a divot in the middle of the fairway, I caught my approach a touch heavy and wound up 30ft short and went on to 2 putt for par. I would par the next 5 holes after hitting each green in regulation, then onto 16 I pushed my tee shot into a gorse bush boarding the right side of the fairway. After taking a penalty drop I hit my approach shot over the top of the flag to the back of the green and would go on to two putt for bogey.
More birdie chances would come over the next 5 holes ranging from 10ft to 35ft, I two putted each of these greens, to record 5 straight pars. The fourth hole is around a 200 yard par 3 and it was playing slightly into the wind and from the right and I tried to hold a rescue against the wind, but instead pull hooked it, quite a distance left of the green. From here I hit a lob wedge to inside 3ft and rolled it in for par. This kept the round going and gave me a boost as it is a shot that I have worked hard on over the last few weeks.
I made bogey at the next hole after 3 putting from around 35ft, this dropped me to 2 over for the round. I again would go on to give myself birdie chances on the closing four holes, but each failed to drop and I would have to settle for par on each and sign for a 74.
I played fairly solid throughout the round and despite using the putter 36 times, I putted well, with nearly every putt coming close to dropping.