David Miller, last year’s victor, and Stuart Cup winner Allyn Dick, were both casualties on the opening night of the Lothians Championship at Musselburgh.
West Linton’s Stephen Smith sent Miller crashing out at the 20th, where the Duddingston man hit the hole from 25 feet in a valiant attempt to keep the match alive.
“David fought like a defending champion, having holed a few good putts before making a birdie at the last,” said Smith.
“He wasn’t giving up his title easily, but I played a lot better than I did in Saturday’s qualifying.”
It was Smith’s first win in the match-play phase, the 40-year-old adding: “The only other time I’ve been in the second round was after getting a bye.”
Electrician Keith Wilson put the lights out on Dick as the former Scottish international also fell at the first hurdle in his bid to reclaim the title he won in 2010. “The key moment was at the 17th, where Allyn hit his tee shot right under a tree and had no shot,” said Wilson, a former Carrick Knowe man who lives in Livingston and has been a Deer Park member for the past four years. He described the success as his “best win”, especially after finding himself two down to his experienced Kingsfield opponent.
Dick’s clubmate Jordyn Rhind also suffered an early exit, losing 4&3 to Sean McGarvey from Glencorse. “I played poorly at the weekend but was two-under for 15 holes tonight,” reported McGarvey.
A year after losing in the first round as the Stuart Cup winner, Callum Burgess made home advantage count against West Lothian’s Barrie Lewis. “I feel confident about this week,” admitted Burgess, who turns 22 today.
Turnhouse’s Richard Moffat bagged five birdies in winning his match, admitting he’s reaping the rewards of a putting lesson from former Walker Cup player David Patrick. Other winners were Ross Thomson, Derek Thomson and teenager Jack Rogan.
Results: Barrie Lewis (West Lothian) lost to Calum Burgess (Musselburgh) one hole; David Miller (Duddingston) lost to Stephen Smith (West Linton) at 20th; Ross Thomson (Gullane) bt Lewis Bain (Turnhouse) 4&3; Alan Sim (Broomieknowe) lost to Derek Thomson (Glencorse) 2&1; Keith Wilson (Deer Park) bt Allyn Dick (Kingsfield) one hole; Alan Crawford (Deer Park) lost to Ricky Moffat (Turnhouse) 4&3; Jordyn Rhind (Kingsfield) lost to Sean McGarvey (Glencorse) 4&3; Jack Rogan (Longniddry) bt Sean Walter (West Linton) 2&1.