Text size:

  • Small
  • Normal
  • Large
Duncan Stewart of Scotland holds a two-shot lead after the first round of the Mena Golf Tour's Dirab Championship. Mark Runnacles / Getty Images
Duncan Stewart of Scotland holds a two-shot lead after the first round of the Mena Golf Tour's Dirab Championship. Mark Runnacles / Getty Images
Duncan Stewart of Scotland holds a two-shot lead after the first round of the Mena Golf Tour's Dirab Championship. Mark Runnacles / Getty Images

Scotland’s Duncan Stewart fires 66 to match course record

Moroccan amateur in contention while defending champion Shafiq Masih is two shots back after first round.

RIYADH // Duncan Stewart matched the course record with a six-under 66 to take a two-shot lead after round one at the Mena Golf Tour’s Dirab Golf Championship on Monday.

The Scot fired six birdies, two bogeys and an eagle to tie the course record set by Pakistan’s Shafiq Masih and Craig Smith of Wales in the final round of last year’s championship.

Moroccan amateur Mustapha El Maouas led the region’s challenge with a 71.

Defending champion Masih, looking to atone for missing the cut at last week’s Dubai Creek Open, made good use of his “local knowledge” to shoot 68 and join favourite Zane Scotland – the winner in Dubai last week – and Greg Nicolson in second place, one shot ahead of Tommy Mou.

“I really was playing as good a golf as I have played for a while,” said Masih, a former teaching professional at the Dirab Golf and Country Club.

“My putting was a lot better today. I know what it takes to shoot low on this course. You never know what tomorrow holds, but I feel like I’m in great position.”

The day, however, belonged to Stewart, who found his groove quickly and made the turn at four-under before dropping his first shot on the 10th. He picked up two more shots – on the 11th and 15th – and eagled the 13th to end the round with a broad smile lighting up his face.

“It was a good day at work,” he said. “I struck the ball well and created many birdie opportunities, which was good.”

With two wins and a second place from the first three events of the tour this season, England’s Scotland continued his hot streak, reeling off seven birdies in his 68, but double-bogeyed the par-4 eighth after hitting his tee shot out of bounds before dropping another shot on the 16th.

The dropped shots may have undermined his day’s work, but the Englishman was pleased with his overall effort.

“No complaints. I played pretty solid golf,” said Scotland.

In all 15 players broke par in the first round with Switzerland’s Dubai-based Michael Harradine producing the best score in the amateur division with a 70, one ahead of Morocco’s El Maouas.

sports@thenational.ae

Back to the top

More articles


Editor's Picks

 Glenn Maxwell's knock that followed ensured Brendon McCullum's knock went in vain after his explosive half-century took Chennai Super Kings past the 200-mark. Ravindranath K / The National

All is well with Punjab as Maxwell and Miller seal win against Chennai

The Australian missed out on a century but his 95 runs, along with Miller's unbeaten half-century, ensured Kings XI scaled a mighty peak of a target in a hot first game of Abu Dhabi's double-header.

 Sunderland manager Gus Poyet protests during the Premier League match against Crystal Palace at The Stadium of Light in Sunderland, northeast England, on March 15, 2014. Ian MacNicol / AFP

Sunderland going out of Premier League with a grumble

Northeast club have underwhelmed during seven-year stay in the top flight

 Hamburg players leave the field after the match against Borussia Moenchengladbach on March 30, 2014. AFP

Hamburg the dinosaur’s time may be up in Bundesliga

Ever-present for 51 years in the German top-flight, Hamburg face the prospect of relegation, writes Ian Hawkey.

 At 105 kg, Gabrielle Garcia has dominated the world circuit and loves many things about being in Abu Dhabi. Ravindranath K / The National

Garcia seeks fresh challenge in MMA after her jiu-jitsu domination

Brazilian prides being a lioness in the sport but feels she can shed 25kg weight to pursue her MMA debut aspirations.

 England's Jonathan Trott hits out during the ICC Champions Trophy semi final match against South Africa at The Oval cricket ground, London June 19, 2013. REUTERS/Philip Brown

England’s Jonathan Trott sidelined with stress-related illness again

Jonathan Trott is to take a second break from professional cricket because of his stress-related illness as England and Wales Cricket Board and Warwickshire confirmed he will stop playing with immediate effect.

 Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho looks on during the Premier League match between Swansea City and Chelsea at the Liberty Stadium on April 13, 2014 in Swansea, Wales. Chris Brunskill/Getty Images

‘That’s why we are a top club’ says Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech

Jose Mourinho’s men will temporarily claim the Premier League top spot if they beat Sunderland, leaving them in control of their own destiny in the title race ahead of a crucial trip to face Liverpool at Anfield on April 27.

Events

To add your event to The National listings, click here

Get the most from The National