8am Round-Up: Amateur shares lead in Australian Open

Curtis Luck carded a five-under-par 67 to share the lead in the Emirates Australian Open at Royal Sydney. Picture: Getty Images
Curtis Luck carded a five-under-par 67 to share the lead in the Emirates Australian Open at Royal Sydney. Picture: Getty Images
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Connor Syme gave himself a good chance of making the cut as fellow amateur Curtis Luck upstaged playing partners Jordan Spieth and Geoff Ogilvy in the opening round of the Emirates Australian Open in Sydney.

Drumoig 21-year-old Syme, who earned his spot in the field by winning the Australian Amateur Championship earlier in the year, gave a good account of himself in the company of two double winners, Peter Lonard and Robert Allenby, at Royal Sydney.

As Lonard and Allenby signed for 70 and 71 respectively, Syme carded a one-over-par 73 - the same as another former winner, Adam Scott - to sit just outside the top 70.

It was an effort that Syme, who finished in the top 20 in the New South Wales Open last weekend, would probably have settled for after being two-over early on before getting back to level with eight holes to play.

“Some good play mixed with some not quite perfect shots,” wrote Syme’s father and coach, Stuart, on Facebook. “Good round tomorrow and he’ll still make the cut.”

Luck, winner of both the US and Asian Amateur Championships this year and a member of the Australian side that romped to a 19-shot victory in the Eisenhower Trophy in Mexico, earned a share of the clubhouse lead with a five-under-par 67.

The 20-year-old outscored world No 5 Spieth by two shots and former US Open champion Geoff Ogilvy, the third member of the marquee group, by three as he set the pace along with compatriot Lucas Herbert.


Jane Turner takes a commanding six-shot lead into the second round of the Ladies European Tour Qualifying School stage one event in Morocco.

The former Scottish international from Midlothian spreadeagled the field with a stunning seven-under-par 65 at Mohammedia Golf Club.

The two other Scots in the field - Gabrielle Macdonald and Rachael McQueen - didn’t fare as well at Turner in their opening rounds.

Macdonald, who has entered as an amateur, is sitting joint-30th after a six-over 78 while McQueen is close to last after struggling to a 13-over 85.


Tributes have been paid to Scottish PGA professional John Stirling following his death at the age of 89.

Stirling, who started his career in golf as a greenkeeper at Eastwood before getting his first pro’s job at Roehampton, was one of the founders of the modern-day PGA training programme.

“There must be so many of our members across the world that in some way owe their career to John having been taught by him and through his efforts in education,” said PGA chief executive Sandy Jones.

“And there are also so many golfers across the world who will have seen him as an after-dinner speaker and enjoyed his humour and friendship.

“So he has been a major influence in the game – both in bringing his skills and knowledge to generations of PGA Members and also in the entertainment and enjoyment he gave to the ordinary golfers who played the game.

“On a personal level he was a great friend and companion and who in terms of after-dinner entertainment, I was privileged to share the same platform with him on many occasions – always coming off second best.

John will be fondly remembered by many across the world of golf and sadly missed.”

Hampshire-based Stirling was one of the first PGA Master Professionals in recognition of his achievements, which included captaining the PGA in 1989 and national coach to the English Golf Union.

His attachments included Woking, Meyrick Park in Bournemouth and Meon Valley Golf & Country Club in Southampton.

The funeral service will be held on November 28 at 1pm at Wessex Vale Crematorium Chapel in Southampton.


Paul Lawrie claimed his second win of the North-East Alliance season with a two-under 68 at Oldmeldrum.

Helped by birdies at the 16th and 18th, he finished a shot ahead of two players - LET pro Laura Murray and Murcar Links amateur Andy Campbell.


Host club assistant pro Cameron Marr won the East Alliance event at Musselburgh with a two-under-par 69.

The effort earned him a two-shot success over Andrew Oldcorn (Kings Acre), Louis Gaughan (Bathgate) and Marc Owenson (Gullane).


Fraser McKenna took route 66 to claim victory in the first event on the new CT Sports Academy Winter Series at Monifieth Links.

His five-under-par effort secired a two-shot win over Ryan Campbell, with three players - Chris Kelly, Ben Craggs and Jamie McLeary - a shot further back,


A one-under-par 71 earned Burntisland Golf House assistant pro Craig Armstrong a one-shot victory in the Midland Golfers’ Alliance event at Strathmore Golf Centre.

His closest challenger was another assistant pro, Piperdam Osprey’s Rory Tinker.