Double bogey derails Paul Dunne’s charge at Scottish Open
Irishman still well in touch after opening 67 at Gullane where Luke List leads the way
Paul Dunne carded an opening round of 67 at the Scottish Open. Photo: Oisin Keniry/Inpho
There was nice and steady progress being made up the leaderboard for Paul Dunne in the first round of the Scottish Open at Gullane on Thursday.
Until the final hole.
The Greystones golfer was five under par and nearing the lead as he stepped onto the 18th at the old links but a double bogey to finish would see him tumble back down the leaderboard and sign for what was, in the end, a disappointing 67 to sit four shots behind leader Luke List.
Dunne - who is already assured of his place at next week’s British Open - came into this week off the back of an Irish Open in which he failed to break 70 but that proved to be no problem on the opening day in Scotland, even after an opening bogey.
That dropped shot was quickly recovered at the second before two more birdies – at the fourth and seventh – saw the 25-year-old out in 33.
Further birdies at the 12th, 15th and 16th moved him within two of American List but an ugly six at his closing hole put a blemish on what was otherwise an excellent round of golf after Dunne had said last week that he needed to improve his driving in the wind as he felt that was what let him down at Ballyliffin.
Dunne was the best of the Irish by two shots on the opening day as Graeme McDowell carded a one under par round of 69 while Darren Clarke managed one over and Pádraig Harrington sits well off the pace a further two shots back.
Towards the top of the leaderboard the Lee Westwood renaissance continues after the Englishman carded a bogey-free 64 to share second place with 2015 winner Rickie Fowler, Robert Rock, Scott Fernandez and Jens Dantorp — a shot behind List, whose seven-under-par 63 equalled the course record.
Masters champion Patrick Reed was part of an eight-strong group a shot further back following a 65, with Danny Willett also continuing his resurgence with a 66 and Olympic champion Justin Rose returning a 67.
Westwood has played just nine events this season after falling out of the world’s top 50 and being ineligible for the Masters, US Open and World Golf Championship events, but the 45-year-old insists he still has the desire to compete at the highest level.
“I’m 45 now so I can’t play as much as I used to, I’m certainly fresh,” said Westwood, who will be one of Thomas Bjorn’s vice-captains when Europe attempt to retain the Ryder Cup in Paris in September.
“But I’m still willing to go out there and practice and work hard on the range and if you’re willing to do that your hunger levels are high.
“I’m gradually able to take the form on the range on to the golf course and I played lovely today. I didn’t put myself in any trouble and gave myself a lot of chances.
“I’m trying not to get excited at all, I’m just trying to control what I can and if it happens, it happens. I’ve never got too far in front of myself and that’s why I have been a prolific winner throughout my career.”
Fowler raised the prospect of recording the first 59 in European Tour history after five birdies and an eagle took him to seven under par after 12 holes of the par-70 layout.
But a bogey on the 13th was followed by five straight pars as the inward nine played much harder back into the wind, Reed also racing to the turn in 29 before coming home in 36.
“I love playing links golf and being able to use your imagination and hit different shots,” said Fowler, whose victory at Gullane in 2015 prompted the members to rename the clubhouse bar in his honour. “I feel like this golf course, you go around and you hit pretty much every club in your bag.”
Collated First round scores at the Scottish Open (Britain unless stated, Irish in bold, par 70)
63 Luke List (USA)
64 Robert Rock, Scott Fernandez (Spa), Rickie Fowler (USA), Lee Westwood, Jens Dantorp (Swe)
65 Robert Karlsson (Swe), Peter Whiteford, Tyrrell Hatton, Julien Guerrier (Fra), Dylan Frittelli (Rsa), Matthew Southgate, Patrick Reed (USA), Richard Sterne (Rsa)
66 Soren Kjeldsen (Den), Richie Ramsay, Clement Sordet (Fra), Danny Willett, Haotong Li (Chn), Peter Hanson (Swe), Marcel Siem (Ger), Scott Hend (Aus), Ian Poulter, Justin Walters (Rsa), Russell Knox
67 Charley Hoffman (USA), Lasse Jensen (Den), Alexander Bjork (Swe), Joakim Lagergren (Swe), Oliver Fisher, Laurie Canter, Adam Bland (Aus), Justin Rose, Paul Dunne (Irl), Eddie Pepperell, Soomin Lee (Kor), Matthieu, Pavon (Fra), Paul Waring, Ryan Fox (Nzl), Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano (Spa), Chris Paisley, Matthias Schwab (Aut), Sam Horsfield, Jordan Smith
68 Ricardo Gouveia (Prt), Hideki Matsuyama (Jpn), Matteo Manassero (Ita), Bradley Neil, Jacques Kruyswijk (Rsa), Thongchai Jaidee (Tha), Dean Burmester (Rsa), Marc Warren, Wade Ormsby (Aus), Adrian Otaegui (Spa), Edoardo Molinari (Ita), Bradley Dredge, Lucas Bjerregaard (Den), Richard Bland, Chris Wood, Daniel Brooks, Matt Kuchar (USA), Jin-ho Choi (Kor), Shubhankar Sharma (Ind), Cameron Smith (Aus), Jamie McLeary, Trevor Immelman (Rsa), Romain Wattel (Fra), Thomas Pieters (Bel), Matthew Fitzpatrick, Alexander Levy (Fra)
69 Steven Brown, Jorge Campillo (Spa), Ashun Wu (Chn), Martin Kaymer (Ger), Carlos Pigem (Spa), Aaron Rai, Julian Suri (USA), Chase Koepka (USA), Rak hyun Cho (Kor), Christiaan Bezuidenhout (Rsa), Gavin Green (Mal), Benjamin Hebert (Fra), Graeme McDowell (NIrl), Daniel Im (USA), David Horsey, Ashley Chesters, George Coetzee (Rsa), Kevin Chappell (USA), Darren Fichardt (Rsa), Lee Slattery, Jonas Blixt (Swe), Raphael Jacquelin, (Fra), James Morrison, David Drysdale, Kiradech Aphibarnrat (Tha), Oliver Farr
70 Ross Fisher, Brandon Stone (Rsa), Phachara Khongwatmai (Tha), Adrien Saddier (Fra), Jason Scrivener (Aus), Duncan Stewart, Tapio Pulkkanen (Fin), Jeff Winther (Den), Ernie Els (Rsa)
Thomas Bjorn (Den), Thomas Detry (Bel), Gregory Havret (Fra), Charlie Ford, David Howell, Nicolas Colsaerts (Bel), Callum Shinkwin, Phil Mickelson (USA), Stephen Gallacher, Jeunghun Wang (Kor), Andrea Pavan (Ita),, Fabrizio Zanotti (Pry), Sam Brazel (Aus), Lorenzo Gagli (Ita)
71 Matt Wallace, Maximilian Kieffer (Ger), Mikko Ilonen (Fin), Scott Jamieson, Connor Syme, Nacho Elvira (Spa), S.S.P Chawrasia (Ind), Mike Lorenzo-Vera (Fra), Haydn Porteous (Rsa), Andrew Dodt (Aus), Darren Clarke (NIrl), Andy Sullivan, Sebastien Gros (Fra), Ryan Evans, Chris Hanson, Jamie Donaldson, Gregory Bourdy (Fra), Pedro Oriol (Spa)
72 Thomas Aiken (Rsa), Pablo Larrazabal (Spa), Hideto Tanihara (Jpn), Brett Rumford (Aus), Peter Uihlein (USA), Martin Laird, Austin Connelly (Can), Conor O’Neil, Rafael Cabrera-Bello (Spa), Yusaku Miyazato (Jpn), Nino Bertasio (Ita)
73 David Lipsky (USA), Erik Van Rooyen (Rsa), Alvaro Quiros (Spa), Renato Paratore (Ita), Pádraig Harrington (Irl)
74 Jason Norris (Aus), Zander Lombard (Rsa)
75 Matthew Baldwin