GRANT FORREST’S first-round opponent in next week’s Scottish Amateur Championship knows his game inside out.
He should, too, as Greg Smail, as well as being his Craigielaw clubmate, caddied for the 2012 winner when he played in The Open at Muirfield a year ago.
Forrest is the No.2 seed for the event at Downfield, but he’ll know that Smail will be no pushover when they meet in one of the final opening-round ties on Tuesday. The pair came through the junior ranks together at Craigielaw and have seen their games improve at the University of San Diego and the University of Louisiana-Monroe respectively.
Defending the title in Dundee will be Dunbar’s Zander Culverwell, who beat Fifer James White in the final at Blairgowrie last year.
He faces Myles Johnston in the first round, with Marriott Dalmahoy’s Callum Cochrane a possible opponent after that. Among those in action early on Monday is Mortonhall’s Mark Dickson, a member of Caermount’s Dispatch Trophy-winning side two years ago.
Beating Jospeh Bryce is likely to see him then face top seed and Amateur champion Bradley Neil (Blairgowrie).
Rob Paterson, a member of both Kilspindie and Mortonhall, and Musselburgh player Lewis Bain also have a chance to make a name for themselves in the SGU’s flagship event.
Paterson is up against Ewen Ferguson, the British Boys’ champion from Bearsden, while Lothians Junior title-holder Bain takes on Scott Borrowman from Dollar.
Promising young Lothians star Murray Naysmith (Marriott Dalmahoy) is in the same segment as the highly-rated Daniel Young while seeded Royal Burgess player James Ross starts out against Allan Johnston. Other intriguing ties are in store for West Linton’s Sean Walter and Alan Anderson from Bruntsfield Links.
Walter faces Scotland star Ewan Scott while Anderson’s first-round opponent is Sean Lawrie, nephew of 1999 Open champion Paul.
The Fairstone-sponsored event starts at 6.45am on Monday and runs through to a 36-hole final on Saturday week.