Round with Paul Lawrie rubs off on Connor Wilson with 63

Connor Wilson, the 2018 Scottish Boys’ champion, didn’t have to wait long for a dream round in Paul Lawrie’s company to rub off on him.

Tartan Pro Tour founder Paul Lawrie is flanked by Connor Wilson, left, and Gregor Graham before their round in the Royal Dornoch Masters. Picture: Tartan Pro Tour

At Lawrie’s request in his new mentoring role with Scottish Golf, the 1999 Open champion played with both Wilson and fellow amateur Gregor Graham in the opening day of last week’s Royal Dornoch Masters on the Tartan Pro Tour.

Feeling a bit rusty in his first competitive outing of the year, Wilson had to settle for a 74 - five shots more than Lawrie - before a second-round 77 in tough conditions at the Sutherland venue left him in a tie for 45th.

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But he then went out a few days later and carded a seven-under-par 63 at Craigmillar Park to lead Dunbar to a second successive victory in the Lothians Team Tournament.

“While I didn’t play too well alongside Paul up at Dornoch, it was still an amazing experience,” said the 20-year-old.

“Just being able to watch how he goes about his business and make things look easy was a brilliant opportunity and his short game was electrifying.

“I didn’t play too well myself, but I got rid of some rust and also some bad shots as Saturday at Craigmillar Park was a lot better.”

His effort, which was the best of the day by three shots, included two eagles - at the third and 14th - as well as a birdie-birdie finish.

“My trolley packed in before I went out and I then started with a bogey and was thinking to myself, ‘it could be one of those days’,” he added. “But I then chipped in at the third for an eagle and that sparked some good play for the rest of the round.”

Wilson’s effort, coupled with a 70 from Jamie Duiguid and a 74 from Grant Thomson, gave Dunbar a 207 total, which was matched by Mortonhall through the efforts of Alex Main (68), James Grant (69) and Greg Nicolson (70).

Dunbar won by a shot on a countback, with Murrayfield trio Archie Finnie (68), Archie Wyatt (68) and Charlie Campbell (72) a shot behind in third.

George Heriot’s FP, represented by Elliot Innes, Scott Johnston and Steven Sinclair, won the Walker Cup as the leading affiliate club, pipping Hailes by a shot on 219.

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