A superb, one-blemish round of six-under-par 65 by CHRIS BARON (far right) earned him top prize of €4,000 in the Kempinski ‘The Dome’ Pro-Am at Antalya, Turkey, despite a challenging come-back by the first round leader, PHIL GOLDING.
Baron, a well-respected coach with 30 years PGA experience including spells as head professional at some of the world’s most prestigious resorts, turned up the heat on the third and final day with a round that was perfectly designed for the occasion.
After three holes he was already three under par as the field of pros returned to the PGA-bonded, par-71 Sultan course for the final shoot-out and a dropped shot at the fifth proved to be no more than a temporary irritation as he then reeled off some magical scoring.
A sequence of birdie-par, birdie-par, par-birdie swept him into the lead, one that he did not intend to waste. Seven safety-first pars then took him to the 18th where his grand finale was a birdie flourish to post a two-stroke lead over Golding.
Ulas Karatas had set the target at two over par with an excellent round of 70 but it was something of a switchback ride that took him into red figures for the day. Birdies, bogeys and pars went into his mix one after the other as he battled to steer a level course… until a three on the par four 15th sealed a good day’s work.
His leader-in-the-clubhouse role did not survive for long, however. Golding was soon to take over as the first-round leader all but wiped his second round slump off the slate with a seven-birdie round of 67 for a 54-hole total of 212, two under par.
Although he dropped a shot at the first and another at 12 he was never going to allow that second-day 77 to become a habit as his putter began to do the business again and the possibility of adding to his success in the 2011 Beko Classic was clearly in his sights.
Yet, well as Golding played, he was forced to settle for runner-up spot as ‘The Baron’ took centre stage. Among the sub-par scorers was Liam Bond. The Welshman’s round of 70 gave him third place on his own at level par for the 54 holes.
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