Dog gone it! Four-legged ball thief fails to derail Grant’s title charge
SCOTLAND: Monday, August 16th
FORMAT: 18-hole strokeplay
It is a golfing twist that you’d expect only to experience in a bizarre dream but Dunecht House stalwart Grant Duguid overcame the shock of having his ball stolen by a dog to win the Scottish Medal Finals Grand Final.
The 55-year-old, who volunteers as the handicap secretary at his home club, was entering the final stages of a dream round on the Dukes course at St Andrews when he flopped his ball out of the bunker to eight feet at the 14th. Getting 11 shots, he was one under gross at that point.
Out the corner of his eye he could see the young dog charging towards him and partners Thomas Grant (Morton Hall) and Gary Havlin (Greenock Whinhill). Grant couldn’t quite react in time to stop the tearaway pup nabbing his ball and disappearing down the fairway.
After some considerable time, Grant managed to recover it but unsurprisingly missed the par putt.
And despite the highly disconcerting interlude, he “hung on” to win by three from women’s champion Hazel Dean (Muthill) and Hilton Park’s Paddy Cuthbertson. Seventy-five players made it through club qualifying and regional qualifying to play in the competition.
“Those first 13 holes were was probably the best I have ever played,” said Grant.
“I was totally in the zone. I was keeping out of danger and that bunker at 14 was the first one I found all day.
“The dog clearly should never been let off the lead and she (the dog’s owner) wasn’t very sorry.
“To make matters worse she had trampled all over the green and when I finally took the putt, it felt like I was putting over the Himalayas.”
Grant finished with two more bogeys and a double bogey, recording a superb nett 64. He added: “It was a great course and great hospitality and Scottish Golf really made it feel like a professional event.”
A superb par at the difficult second kickstarted his round. Having duffed his second, trying to cut a three wood towards the target, he put his third to eight feet and holed the putt.
“After my second shot you start thinking bogey or double bogey so to par that hole really got the round going” added Grant.
He parred every hole on the front nine before birdieing the tenth and then getting to the 14th green one under. Cue some unwanted fun and games.
It was also a special day for Pecten’s David Webster. He finished joint eighth having posted a nett 70 which included a hole in one at the 12th.