O’Hara earns late place in Scottish Open
A WEEK after securing a first-major appearance in the Open Championship, Steven O’Hara has also earned a spot in the ‘warm-up’ for Royal Lytham.
The 31-year-old Motherwell man is now in the field for the Scottish Open as well after coming off the reserve list following some withdrawals for the Castle Stuart event.
It takes the home contingent to 19, with O’Hara, Stirling’s Craig Lee and Gary Orr from Helensburgh all having earned places through their ranking since the entries closed just under three weeks ago. Five of the eight professional invitations have gone to Scottish players, two-time major winner Sandy Lyle having been joined on that list by Alastair Forsyth, James Byrne, David Law and Michael Stewart. It also includes former USPGA champion Martin Kaymer and three-time Masters champion Phil Mickelson, who was handed the last of the spots after he contacted organisers over the weekend asking he could get a place in the field.
Mickelson’s presence is a major boost to the event, especially after fellow American and world No 30 Nick Watney pulled out after originally saying he’d be playing at Castle Stuart for the first time. It means the field will boast just three Americans, with Mickelson being joined by Rich Beem, the 2002 USPGA champion, and three-time PGA Tour winner John Rollins.
With Northern Ireland’s Alan Dunbar, winner of the recent Amateur Championship at Royal Troon, having turned down a spot, two places instead of one were given to the Scottish Golf Union, who chose Jack McDonald, the young Kilmarnock (Barassie) player and Leven Golfing Society’s Brian Soutar.
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Friday 24 May 2013
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