It’s tight at the top

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In the individual event, Gavin O’Neill is one off the lead after yesterday’s par 72 round, but Sam Crenan and Christy McLaughlin may still be in with a shout after finishing up in 74 and 75 respectively.

The team event is wide open, as Jersey sit among the top five teams, amid competition from Bermuda, Aland, the Shetland Islands and the Isle of Man.

Manager Peter Crenan said: ‘We’ve had a reasonable start, but we had some problems on the back nine. Christy, Gavin and Sam were two under at the turn but the back nine was a bit tougher than the front. But Gavin is only one off the lead, and Christy and Sam are still in the running. At the moment, the team event is wide open.’

O’Neill played a respectable round despite battling toothache, but McLaughlin, from a good start, was frustrated with his end game.

He said: ‘It wasn’?t brilliant. The courses here are alright, but they are a bit shorter and there are lots of trees so they aren’t quite what we are used to playing on. I had a rhubarb crumble on the back nine, went swimming on the 11th, and just had four bad holes really – bogey, double bogey, par, bogey, double bogey. So in five holes I went six over par.

‘I’d say it’s been a positive start for the team, though. I definitely still fancy us to win the gold.’

The ladies, meanwhile, didn’t have such an optimistic start – team manager Lyn Cottignies said that organisational problems gave the girls a real headache on the course.

She said: ‘We were on the course for six hours! The women didn’t start until the afternoon, but they had only left a 20 minute gap between the men and the women, so Olivia, who was first out, caught them up on the second hole and that created a backlog.

‘The conditions were also a bit tougher, and a bit windier, and by the time we got to the back nine everyone was feeling very tired. Olivia stormed out in 33 on the first nine – better, I think, than most of the men! – but she had some problems on the 16th and came home in 80.

‘Alex Mollin also finished in 80, and Gloria Paradiso and Elaine Pushman finished in 92 and 90, so Gloria’s score won’t count for the team competition. All in all it was a bit of a difficult day for us, but we start our next round in the morning, so that should make it a lot easier for us.’

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