LIVINGSTON-BASED Chris Doak is facing a first visit to the European Tour Qualifying School since 2011 after failing to complete his third tournament in a row.
The 37-year-old pulled out of the £3.3 million Alfred Dunhill Links Championship after 11 holes of his second round at Kingsbarns, where he’d struggled to the turn in 42.
“Unfortunately I had to retire again with an ongoing wrist injury,” wrote Doak later on Twitter, having suffered a similar fate in last week’s Porsche European Open in Germany.
The week before that, he didn’t finish the opening two rounds of the Italian Open either after mistakenly disqualifying himself thinking he had played the wrong type of ball.
Since graduating from the Challenge Tour in 2012, Doak had delivered the goods in the Dunhill Links when his back was against the wall, finishing 20th and fifth in the last two years as he held on to his card.
Lying 156th in the Race to Dubai coming into this week’s event and with only three more after it, the former Tartan Tour No.1 needed another big week in his bid to climb into the top 110.
But this latest premature exit has now left Doak facing a mountain to climb with only the British Masters, Portugal Masters and Hong Kong Open left to try and save himself.
Also battling to hang on to his card, Cockburnspath-based David Drysdale, was left bemoaning a switch in wind direction as he dropped three shots in the final three holes in his second round at Carnoustie.
“I’m not happy just now,” declared Drysdale after signing for a level-par 72 to sit on four-under-par – seven shots behind joint-leaders Jimmy Mullen and Anthony Wall.
“The last five holes just played completely differently. I had to hit driver, 3-wood at 14 and driver, 3-iron at 15. We should have had those holes downwind, but the wind completely switched on the 13th tee.”
Similarly affected as he shot the same score to sit on five-under, Stephen Gallacher said of the Angus course: “It was a beast today.”