Round Up: Richie Ramsay and Michele Thomson in the hunt for title triumphs

Richie Ramsay is feeling buoyant heading into the final two rounds of the Qatar Masters after ending his second circuit on a high to leave the leaders in his sights in Doha.

Richie Ramsay, right, is just two shots off the lead at the halfway stage. Picture: Warren Little/Getty Images

The three-time European Tour winner three-putted the par-3 17th for his only bogey of the day, but repaired that damage with a birdie at the last for a 70 and a six-under total. He’s sitting joint eighth, just two shots off the lead, held by South African duo George Coetzee and Justin Harding, as well as Frenchman Mike Lorenzo-Vera.

“I was really steady and played the way I am used to playing,” said Ramsay, one of the straightest-hitters on the circuit. “It was disappointing to three-putt 17 for bogey, but I then hit a fantastic drive down the last and then found the green for a two-putt birdie and that birdie was important going into the weekend.

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“To bogey 17 as I did and not to have birdied 18 would have put a dampener on things with regards your mindset and attitude as you are always looking for any kind of ray of light. So, to get that on 18 helps you going into the next day and hopefully I can go out and shoot a good score.”

Bob MacIntyre made his eighth cut in a row, picking up two shots in the last three holes after earlier back-to-back bogeys to sit alongside fellow rookie Grant Forrest on three-under, with Scott Jamieson and Liam Johnston also still standing on two and one-under respectively.

On the LET, Michele Thomson admitted she was feeling at home at Queanbeyan Golf Club after reaching the halfway stage in the New South Wales Open just four shots behind Iceland’s Valdis Thora Jonsdottir. “This course suits me being tight and the greens are small, so it reminds me of where I played as a youngster,” said Thomson of Ellon after backing up her opening 68 with an equally-solid 69 to sit joint fifth on five-under.

The Aberdonian, who turns 31 on Monday, signed for four birdies and two bogeys to remain in the hunt for her first LET title triumph. “It was a steady round really,” she added. “I’ve been playing well, I just haven’t putted well and obviously yesterday I played well. Today was similar.”

Carly Booth, who sits joint 19th on one-under, has been signed up as an ambassador by Scottish Golf to help ambitious plans to grow the women and girls’ game. The new role for Booth, a Scottish Girls’ champion before going on to become a two-time LET winner, was announced on International Women’s Day.

The 26-year-old will work with the governing body to raise the profile of women and girls’ golf through a number of initiatives in 2019. “If there is one thing that I am passionate about, it’s encouraging girls and women into golf and sport,” said Booth.

Kelsey Macdonald also made it to the weekend after carding a 70 for a two-over total.