Lloyd Saltman and James Maw will tee off as the leading pair in the final round of the FSC Invitational in front of the Sky Sports cameras at The Astbury in Bridgnorth on the HotelPlanner.com PGA EuroPro Tour on Friday.
Both are nine under par after 36 holes on the par-70 course with Scott Drummond (Skills Group UK Ltd) third on eight under thanks to two rounds of 66. Richard Wallis (North Foreland Golf Club) is two behind the leaders on seven under, tied for fifth with William Harrold (Sheringham Golf Club), who has two EuroPro wins to his name already this season.
The final round commences at 8am on Friday with entry free for spectators. The players will not only be competing for the £10,000 winner’s prize from a £40,000 prize fund but have the added bonus of a £18,000 Hole In One Jackpot offered for any ace carded on the signature par-three 18th courtesy of The Astbury and sponsors FSC Investment.
Maw (Rockliffe Hall) has been in this position before but is yet to win on the HotelPlanner.com PGA EuroPro Tour and hopes an altered approach will return a different outcome in Shropshire.
“I will be concentrating on my own game and not what everybody else is doing,” he said after shooting rounds of 65 and 66 for nine under.
“It doesn’t matter if I don’t win; if I play as well as I have been then there will be plenty of opportunities. But I could go out and shoot six under and somebody else could shoot seven.
“In the past I have been trying to win too much rather than just playing golf. You can play great and not win or play awful and still win, so I need to be patient and play my very best and see what happens.
“The front nine has been great to me and I finished with three birdies in the second round, so I will hope to take that momentum and pick up where I left off tomorrow.”
Saltman shot rounds of 68 and an impressive second-round 63 and is also looking for his first HotelPlanner.com PGA EuroPro Tour title. The Scotsman expects scoring to be impressive again in the final round if the forecast for temperatures in excess of 20°C proves accurate.
“With weather like this the winning score could be anything,” he said. “I will have to just focus on myself and play one shot at a time as they say. I will go out and give it my best attempt and go out and give it my best attempt.
“It will depend on how I am doing in the tournament but I think I might attack that pin on the 18th a little bit more knowing there is the £18,000 Hole In One Prize. Hopefully the pin position will be generous.
“My brothers Zack (65, 71, -4) and Elliot (67, 70, -3) have made the cut as well which is good. We have all been playing fairly well. It was nice to see Zack with a great round yesterday and it is just a matter of time before he wins on the EuroPro, and Elliot will have been disappointed today but always has a great round in him so who knows.”
A cut to the leading 50 players plus ties has now been made, with all golfers whose 36-hole score is one under par or better qualifying for the final 18 holes. The final round will be filmed for a two-hour highlights package to be broadcast on Sky Sports HD on Tuesday, June 24, with repeats the following day.