Two north-east youngsters have booked their place at the Sky-televised Junior European Open final in Spain this weekend.
Deeside’s Ollie Robertson, 13, and Darcey Sharp, 15, of Duff House Royal, will fly out to Cadiz in Andalucia on Saturday after sealing their spots at the regional final at Newburgh.
Ollie thought he had blown his chances in the event at Newburgh, but he bounced back to clinch the second of the two available places.
The Under-14 North-east Strokeplay and Matchplay champion said: “I was playing well and was one-under through 11 holes.
“But I lost a ball on the tough 12th that led to a treble bogey.
“I had a couple of three putts after that, but birdied the short 15th and managed to get in with a four-over 76,” added Ollie who plays off 1.7.
“A short putt lipped out at the last and I thought that might ruin my chance of qualifying.
“However, I finished second just one shot behind Carnoustie’s Finlay Hazelwood.”
A ‘full-on’ tournament
Both players are set to take on Europe’s best over two courses at the Alcaidesa.
Ollie, who will have his father John with him all week as caddie, added: “The tournament is full on.
“It’s four rounds of qualifying with the top 40 boys making the cut for the final round.
“The courses are completely different – one heathland and the other a links.
“The heathland is quite long at 7,000 yards.
“The gala dinner is on the Friday, then we fly home a week on Saturday.”
Ollie retained the Under-14 Strokeplay title this season at Inverallochy with a five-over-par 72, and added the matchplay title for the same age group courtesy of a one-hole victory over Boyd Gray, of Duff House.
Ollie, who also tied for first at the Under-14 Junior Tour Scotland event at Murcar Links in September, has started winter coaching with the Stephen Gallacher performance north squad.
Darcey qualified courtesy of a gross 84 at Newburgh.
Sky Sports will be covering the action at the tournament in the ancient port city in south-west Spain, with Nick Docherty as host – and a recorded highlights package will be shown at a later date.
Catriona finally Ballater champion after a near-half-century at club
Catriona Morrison has finally achieved her goal of winning the Ballater club championship after 48 years as a member.
After joining the club as a 13-year-old, Catriona, 61, had finished runner-up several times, including in 2021.
Catriona said: “I’ve always had the ambition to be Ballater club champion.
“I finished runner-up to Suzanne Middleton last year, but won the matchplay championship, which was very pleasing.
“Determined to go one better this season, I had a few lessons and they definitely helped.
“I carded rounds of 82 and then 89, which were not great, but it was just enough to win by two strokes from Heather Backhouse.
“I’m just delighted to finally get my name on the club championship board.”
Catriona, who plays off 10, was encouraged to take the sport by her grandparents, parents and older brothers.
“I know that my grandfather Bob Law would be very proud of my achievement,” she added.
Kemnay offers players virtual chance to keep swings going over winter
Time is running out to enter the Kemnay Indoor Winter League.
The tournament is held in the warmth of the performance studio in the pro shop – avoiding the elements of winter.
It offers the opportunity for amateurs to keep their golf swing in the groove and to win some great prizes.
The format is based on a two-person scramble played over the back nine of nine courses, and times can be booked between 8am and 4pm.
The cost is £20 per session with prizes for all the individual courses and the top three overall winners.
For more details, contact Kemnay professional Simon Hanson on 01467 642225.