Senior British Open
July 22, 2011 by staff
Senior British Open, Mark McNulty Ireland and Australia Harwood, Mike took advantage of calm conditions to shoot 4-under 68s at the Senior British Open at Walton Heath on Thursday, taking some of the early first round lead.
Both players at the British Open finalist in the 1990, but moved early to go one better on the main, firing 12 birdies between them in the course of a south London park.
The McNulty of Zimbabwe, born spoiled an otherwise flawless round with a bogey on the par-4 No. 18, while Harwood _ _ in the next group made seven birdies, but dropped shots at the numbers 16 and 17 in the stretch final difficult.
Little known Scottish Albert MacKenzie, a professional club playing their first round of the Senior Tour, was a stroke behind. Defending champion Bernhard Langer of Germany was among a group of players at 2 under.
McNulty, an eight-time winner on the Champions Tour and more than 50 victories on the regular tour, said the bogey at the last took the shine of its travel.
“I made a mental mistake,” said McNulty, who entered the thick heather on the left side of the fairway. “I’m upset with myself, but I would have taken 68 at the first tee.”
While most of the 144 man field struggled with the long par-4 on the back nine, McNulty _ second joint at the British Open in 1990 and winner of the legends of the best ball of Liberty Mutual Golf with David Eger _ April played consistently.
Harwood, second behind compatriot Ian Baker-Finch at Royal Birkdale in 1991, was a leader in 6 consecutive bogeys before leaving office.
The Australian 52-year-old was otherwise at his home in a field where he won the European Open in 1991, one of five European Tour victories before leaving the sport in 1995 after a run of poor results.
“I have some good vibes from this place. I’ve been thinking about returning here for a while and I felt comfortable, though I was walking down the cliff in the last three holes,” he said.
MacKenzie qualified for the event only on Monday, but birdied the last to rise above some of the names of the stars in the senior circuit.
“When I saw my name there with some players I have great respect for, was just wonderful.’s The best day of my life playing golf for a landslide,” said MacKenzie, who won a regional event at Walton Heath back in the 1985.
One of the names of the stars MacKenzie found himself leader is Langer, who won the Masters twice, which is seeking to become the first player to defend the title of Senior Open since Christy O’Connor Jnr. in 2000.
The big German was after four in seven holes, but acknowledged the “wheels down” when bogeyed three of the four holes at the start of the second round.
“I’ve never made any putts apart … and I’m still struggling with my swing is not totally confident that everything yet,” said Langer, who is on the way back after four months after thumb surgery.
_ Three Americans Bob Tway, Mike Goodes and Lee Rinker _ are some of the other six players on the 2.
The three-time winner Tom Watson U.S. was one of the headlines in the evening.
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