Round Up: Euan Walker and Craig Ross put Saltire to the fore

On-form Euan Walker led a six-strong Scottish contingent into the knockout phase of the Sanlam South African Amateur in Cape Town.

Walker, who claimed the African Amateur title at Leopard Creek last Thursday, carded a seven-under-par 65, the joint-best score of the day, in the second of two stroke-play qualifying rounds at King David Mowbray Golf Club.

A bogey-free effort containing an eagle and five birdies saw the Kilmarnock (Barassie) player progress in fourth place on eight-under, two shots behind Luca Filippi, as the home player claimed the Proudfoot Trophy.

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“Today went very well overall,” said Walker, who will be joined in the match-play phase by compatriots Darren Howie, Jim Johnston, James Wilson, Kieran Cantley and Jeff Wright. “I felt like I controlled the ball well from the tee, leaving myself on the fairways and this gave me the opportunity to hit a lot of good approach shots. I also putted well and managed to convert many of these opportunities, including two long putts.

“Looking ahead to the matchplay, I will try to employ the same game plan from the tee and this will give me lots of chances to be pushing to win holes.”

In the professional ranks, Kirkhill’s Craig Ross fired a four-under 68 to figure in a four-way tie for the lead after the first round of Al Zorah Open on the third-tier MENA Tour. Getting himself ready for the start of the Challenge Tour, Ross bagged four birdies in first ten holes in a bogey-free round in Ajman, UAE.

Jack McDonald hit five birdies as he opened with a 70 to sit joint-tenth, while Daniel Hendry (71) was the only other Scot to break par. Jack Doherty, Conor O’Neil and Danny Kay had 72s, while Scott Henry and Simon Dunn signed for 74s.