In ideal conditions over the famous Jack Nicklaus course at the St. Mellion Resort Jack Dray’s final round of 86 was enough to see him qualify in 8 place out of 9 qualifiers.
Having failed at the final hurdle last season Jack managed to hold his game together to make it through. Starting the day lying 5 the pressure was evident from the word go, with a tentative iron shot from the first tee into the rough. Having run out of fairway on this left to right dogleg eventually walking off the first green with a bogey five.
He hit straight back with a birdie on the second hole and seemed to settle down to the task. However a triple and a double bogies on the sixth and seventh hole showed how pressured he was. Yet again though he came back with a birdie 2 on eight, only to bogey the ninth to be out in an 8 over par 44. Starting back with another double bogey on the tenth his qualifying chance seemed to have disappeared again. But this is the Nicklaus course and the rest of the field were struggling as well, Jack was able to restrict dropped shots to only four on the remaining last eight holes to come home in 42, a creditable score in the circumstances.
Gareth Coggins also had a personal best and has built on the experience of the previous rounds, playing off a 20 handicap he returned a net 72 when the competition scratch score for the day rose from 72 to 73. He was able to cope with the stress of playing at this level much to his credit.
Ron Macrow, Team BC Golf Director said,
“The performance of our two players today is credit for all their hard work they have put in during the winter tour break. Jack and Gareth have been able to play and cope with pressure and it is great that Jack has qualified for the National Championship where we have not had any representation for a number of years.”
The Tour Players Championship will be held over three days at St. Annes Old Links, a qualifying venue for the Open Championship.