Neil Fenwick secures Scottish Open spot with second Tartan Pro Tour triumph
Edinburgh man ‘delighted’ to tee up European Tour appearance in East Lothian
Edinburgh man Neil Fenwick secured a dream Scottish Open debut in East Lothian next week after claiming a second title triumph in three starts to win the new Tartan Pro Tour Order of Merit.
The 32-year-old added the Rowallan Castle Championship to his Pollok Open victory earlier in the month in a thrilling finish to the battle for a prized berth in the $7 million Aberdeen Standard Investments-sponsored event starting next Thursday at The Renaissance Club.
Fenwick, who started the second and final round two shots behind overnight leader Danny Kay after an opening 66 at the Ayrshire venue, produced a telling thrust on the back nine as a whole bunch of players found themselves in contention.
He holed a 40-yard wedge shot for an eagle-3 at the 13th before adding birdies at both the 16th and 17th, leaving him in a position where he knew that a last-hole bogey would not prove costly.
"I am absolutely delighted," said the Dunbar-attached player after carding a 67 for a nine-under-par total to win by two shots from Sean Lawrie (66), Jack McDonald (68) and Chris Robb (68), with Kay (73) having to settle for a share of sixth spot on five-under.
"I am delighted for myself and also delighted for my family as it's been a tough year due to my dad almost dying from the coronavirus."
Fenwick picked up a top prize worth £4,000 to take his earnings on the circuit set up by Paul Lawrie to provide playing opportunities for Scottish-based pros to £10,111 from six events.
He topped the order of merit by £560 from former Scottish Amateur champion Robb, with Scottish Par-3 champion John Henry (£8,628) and Carnoustie Challenge winner Sam Locke (£7,844) in third and fourth respectively.
While Fenwick's main reward is that start in a star-studded field for next week's European Tour event, he has also secured a minimum of four starts on next season's Challenge Tour.
"When it was announced that Paul Lawrie had managed to set up these six great events, it was definitely a goal to try and win the Order of Merit," admitted Fenwick.
"I have been playing really well and it was great to show that in the heat of battle today as I think eight players could have won it on a tough windy day.
"I played well down the stretch - I hit a 4-iron to five feet at the 17th, a 200-yard par 3, to give myself a cushion - and I am delighted to get the job done for the second time in three events, landing some amazing added bonuses at the same time."
Hannah McCook, who is managed by Lawrie, also landed a nice bonus as topping the women's Order of Merit earned her a place in next season's Aberdeen Standard Investments Ladies Scottish Open.
“I’m chuffed,” said McCook. “I wouldn’t have got a spot off my status and, with no Q- School this year, I decided to commit to playing all events on the Tartan Pro Tour.”
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