Oz-some stuff in Boys’ Amateur at Saunton

Connor McKinney is through to the last 32 at the Boys' Amateur Championship.
Connor McKinney is through to the last 32 at the Boys' Amateur Championship.
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Two-Australian based Scots, Connor McKinney and Joshua Greer, are through to the last 32 in the 93rd Boys’ Amateur Championship at Saunton along with rising Royal Burgess star Cameron Adam.

Joondalup member McKinney, the leading qualifier, beat England’s Billy Groom 6&4 to set up a third-round clash with Southport & Ainsdale’s Matthew Jackman.

“A 6&4 win is generally good for the confidence, so I am looking forward to the next round,” said 17-year-old McKinney.

“With this wind, you can’t go for too much or miss in the wrong spots so it was a case of hitting into the middle of the greens or even away from flags because the wind was so strong.

“I wasn’t really aggressive today but I also wasn’t defensive. I only had two birdies and a bogey out there. It was just one of those days where there wasn’t a lot of birdies out there and if you made a lot of pars you were going to be close.”

Greer, who is flying the Australian flag but played in the Scottish Amateur at Crail a fortnight ago, beat Spaniard Rodrigo Martin 2&1 while Adam won at the last against Swede Rasmus Jonasson.

Awaiting Greer in the third round is Norwegian Bard Bjornevik Skogen while Adam is up against England’s Oliver Dickman.

In the Girls’ Amateur at Panmure, Broomieknowe’s Hannah Darling bowed out in the first round, losing 3&2 to Stoke Park’s Thalia Kirby.

Former champion Emilie Paltrinieri will face the highest-ranked player in the field in Angus, Alessia Nobilio, in an all-Italian third round match in the event’s centenary staging.

Slovenian Pia Babnik, runaway winner of the Helen Holm Scottish Women’s Open at Troon earlier in the year, survived a scare to beat Arcot Hall’s Rachel Gourley at the 22nd hole.

She now faces Kirsty Rudgeley in the next round after the Australian notched up a 2&1 win over Adela Cernousek from France.