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O’Brien takes scratch silverware at fast and fiery Reay course


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Prize-winners from the Reay Ladies' Open sponsored by Bighouse Melvich, with Pam Bain (centre) receiving the handicap trophy from Toby Ward of Bighouse Melvich.
Prize-winners from the Reay Ladies' Open sponsored by Bighouse Melvich, with Pam Bain (centre) receiving the handicap trophy from Toby Ward of Bighouse Melvich.

Saturday saw Reay hosting the Ladies' Open sponsored by Bighouse Melvich. A fast and fiery course coupled with a testing breeze and occasional showers made it a stern test for players who had travelled from across Caithness and beyond to compete.

The scratch competition was dominated by players from the home club, with Mollie O’Brien and Eleanor Tunn fighting for the silverware. O’Brien fired birdies at the second, 13th and 16th on her way to an excellent winning score of 74, made up of halves of 38 and 36.

An outward half of 40 gave Tunn a mountain to climb, but she fired birdies at the 11th and 13th during a great inward 37 to finish as runner-up on a score of 77.

In the handicap competition the in-form Pam Bain posted a fantastic round of 77 for nett 68 to win the handicap trophy by a margin of two shots. Her excellent halves of 39 and 38 included a birdie at the 16th hole.

It is the first time Bain has won the handicap trophy in the Reay Open since 1989.

Another in-form player from the home course, Sarah Meiklejohn, finished as runner-up on countback after a birdie at the 15th helped her to a round of nett 70.

Thurso’s Morag Mackay claimed third after a round of 88, made up of halves of 42 and 46, also gave her a nett 70. Nicola Campbell, whose golf has come on in leaps and bounds in the past couple of seasons, took fourth place after she also carded a nett 70.

Outwith the main awards, Deirdre Macangus of Wick won the nearest-the-pin prize with a fine tee shot at the final hole, Pauline Craig bagged the prize for best outward half, and Stromness’s Kathleen Sutherland had the best inward half.

Scoring was also good in round six of the ladies' Summer Stableford. Rebecca Munro produced a fabulous round of 79, made up of halves of 37 and 42, with a birdie thrown in at the fourth for good measure, to post a winning tally of 40 points.

Pauline Craig was pushed into second spot on countback after she also managed to amass 40 points, with four excellent threes during her round helping her on the way.

Alison Ross, who is also enjoying some good form, was third on 39 points but was left to rue a couple of bad holes which prevented her from finishing higher.

Pam Bain fired birdies at the second and sixth on her way to 39 points and fourth spot, while Eleanor Tunn amassed 37 points courtesy of a fine round which included 15 pars, two bogeys and a solitary birdie at the fourth.

In the overall ladies' eclectic standings, Pam Bain leads on a score of 59, ahead of Rebecca Munro and Eleanor Tunn on 60.

The Reay team who played in the Wilson Cup – Colin Paterson, Gregor Munro, Tom Ross and Michael Smith.
The Reay team who played in the Wilson Cup – Colin Paterson, Gregor Munro, Tom Ross and Michael Smith.

In the latest action in the North Point Distillery Senior Stableford, Fraser Organ put together a fine back nine on his way to a winning score of 39 points. Hugh Millar, helped by a birdie at the fifth, took second place on 37, and it could have been even better but for three non-counting holes on the back nine.

Alex Anderson birdied the 14th and 17th holes to finish third on 36 points, with David R Craig continuing his good form of late to birdie the sixth on his way to 35 points and fourth place.

In the overall standings Colin Struthers remains the man to catch on a six-round aggregate score of 231.

After round five of the Summer Stableford was abandoned due to bad weather, Jimmy Meiklejohn won round six with a score of 33 points which included a birdie at the fifth hole. Lee Malcolm took second on 31, ahead of James Halliday on 30 and Mike Halliday who also posted 30 points.

Reay had a gents' team, comprising Michael Smith, Tom Ross, Colin Paterson and Gregor Munro, competing in the Wilson Cup at Stromness over the weekend.

After narrow wins against Shetland and Wick, Reay lost by a single hole to Thurso, which meant their Caithness neighbours progressed to the final. In a tense match, the host club prevailed by three holes.

This weekend the ladies will be in Summer Stableford action on Saturday and the gents will contest the July Medal on Sunday.


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