The PGA of Great Britain & Ireland’s Chris Gane took early charge dominating the first round of the 2018 Troon Golf Abu Dhabi Pro-Am, with an opening seven under-par at Abu Dhabi Golf Club in UAE.
With a course set up for championship golf, Gane carded eight birdies for an astonishing 65, taking the lead by three strokes over South Africa’s Mathiam Keyser who shot a steady four-under par (68), with three birdies and an eagle.
“It’s the third or fourth tournament I’ve played round here [Abu Dhabi Golf Club], and I don’t think I’ve ever broken par, so there was a sense of trepidation going out today,” said Gane. “But going out this morning the greens were so good, so pure, and I just managed to hit it close and hole a few.”
The PGA of Italy’s Federico Elli, and the PGA of GB&I’s Daniel Whitby-Smith and Matt Waters each share third place after their opening scores of two-under par (70.)
Team Gane also took the lead in the Pro-Am – together with Andrew Doswell, Neil Foulkes and Robert Munro, the team scored 87 points (-15) to take the lead before moving to Round 02 at Abu Dhabi Golf Club’s sister course, Saadiyat Beach Golf Club.
The amateur competitors demonstrated extreme grit and will to compete on holes that were set up exactly the same as for the European Tour’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship presented by EGA event in January that included some of the best players in the world.
Two points behind in second are Keyser’s team with amateurs Julien Leonard, Ead Samawi, and Khaled Samawi, scoring 85 points (- 13).
For more information about the 2018 Troon Golf Abu Dhabi Pro-Am, visit the Tournament Hub Page (http://eur.pe/2018TroonAbuDhabi), follow @PGAsofEurope and search #TroonAbuDhabi on Twitter, or like the PGAs of Europe Facebook Page.