Gavin MacFarlane in Richie Ramsay’s fourball

Gavin MacFarlane
Gavin MacFarlane
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Kingsknowe’s Gavin MacFarlane lost money when he backed Capital-based European Tour star Richie Ramsay to win last month’s Irish Open.

But the 53-year-old reckons he’s hit the jackpot after securing a place in Ramsay’s team for the Scottish Open in three weeks.

MacFarlane, a procurement officer at Saughton Prison, earned that prize by winning a ‘Play Your Way to Gullane’ grand final.

The 13-handicapper birdied the last at the East Lothian venue for 38 points in the Stableford event and pipped Woll’s Andrew Lindores on a countback to claim a spot in Ramsay’s fourball on July 8.

“I played really well,” admitted a delighted MacFarlane, pictured, who has started to get his teeth back into golf again after his football career came to an end.

“I hadn’t played Gullane No 1 before, but one of my workmates took me out for a game there last Wednesday night.

“To be honest, I didn’t play it particularly well because I like to fly the ball to the green and you can’t do that down there.

“So I had to change my strategy for the competition and that meant the lob wedge being left out of the bag.”

He birdied the 12th but it was the one at the last, where a 12-foot putt dropped, that secured his dream date during the week of the Aberdeen Asset Management-sponsored event.

“I was over at the Irish Open recently with Jimmy Finlay, who is David Drysdale’s father-in-law,” added MacFarlane.

“I put £40 on Richie Ramsay to win heading into the final round because he was in contention. But, after parring the first six holes, he fell away.

“So the first thing I’ll be telling him is that he’s due me £40!

“No, seriously, it’s an amazing prize and I’ve had loads of Kingsknowe members offering to caddie for me, though Jimmy is going to get that job.”

MacFarlane played with the likes of Scott Knowles as a junior at Kingsknowe but only re-joined nine years ago as his involvement with Redhall Star came to an end.

He’s hoping that his day rubbing shoulders with some of the world’s top golfers will be followed soon afterwards by good news on the medical front.

“I was diagnosed with cancer in the bladder last year and needed an extensive and aggressive form of treatment,” he said.

“I was back in for a check-up in January and they couldn’t see anything when they put the camera in. I’m in again in July and hopefully I’ll get the all clear then.”

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