You could say David Law got his putting locked in during lockdown, having used an enforced four-month break due to the coronavairus to work on a new method that is paying dividends in the Betfred British Masters.
Law, the overnight leader after a blistering seven-under-par start at at Close House, near Newcastle, sits just two shots off the pace in joint third at the halfway stage in the European Tour’s full return after backing up that 64 with a 69.
“I’m happy with that,” declared the 29-year-old Aberdonian of his morning’s work in miserable conditions in Northumberland.
The wet weather had improved considerably by the time compatriot Calum Hill came in with his 66 in the afternoon to also sit on nine under, two shots behind the new leader, Italian Renato Paratore.
It is the first time that Law, a double Scottish Amateur champion, has really been in the hunt at this stage since landing his breakthrough European Tour win in just his fifth start as a card holder in the Vic Open in Australia 17 months ago.
“I think what I have learned since then is to keep aiming high, keep trying to win tournaments,” he said of the mindset he planned to take into the final two rounds. “The big thing is to trying to keep making birdies and keep pushing on.”
An eagle-3 at the tenth, where he hit a 4-iron to 10 feet, lit up Law’s second circuit after he started with nine straight pars. He has only had one bogey so far and has been particularly pleased with his touch on the greens.
“I am really happy with the way I am putting after changing to an arm-lock method as it feels consistent,” he said of a style used effectively over the years by American Matt Kuchar. “I had a conventional putting grip before and have never really struggled with my putting. At times, like everyone I feel I can hole more putts.
“I like the arm-lock method. I think there is real merit in it, so, when we locked down, I thought, ‘I’ll give it a proper go’. It’s locked on my forearm and it makes my upper body a lot more still through the putt. I’m happy how that is going.”
Law, who is managed and mentored by Paul Lawrie, has also been striking his irons well and is hoping he can also get the driver working a bit better over the final two rounds.“Over the next two days, the important thing is to have opportunities,” he said. “My iron play feels good and my putting feels good. If I can just drive it in the fairway, that might just give me enough chances.”
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