Solid golf in Dutch Open for Gardiner as EDGA event hots up

The Netherlands, 8 July: Englishman Andy Gardiner leads the ABN AMRO Disabled Open after round one – his 75 giving him a 2-shot advantage over a pair of chasing players at BurgGolf Purmerend in the Netherlands.

Gardiner’s 3-over score on the par 72 test leads the tournament field of 70 for this European Disabled Golf Association (EDGA) Premier Series event around this challenging, tight 5727-meter course which offers plenty of water to admire and avoid.

Avoid it Andy did except for one costly double-bogey early on, his two birdies were part of a plan to play “solid golf”, which has set him up as the man to beat in the final round on Wednesday.  

Gardiner’s lead is narrow over Spain’s Juan Postigo Arce and Belgium’s Adem Wahbi, who both fired 77’s in the warm weather served up on the day.

Chasing the leading trio are two men in form this summer, one of the favourites Cédric Lescut of Belgium who shot a 79 and Manuel de los Santos of the Dominican Republic (82), who was victorious in the recent Czech Disabled Golf Masters. Don’t discount Dutchman Willem-Aart Vlug, whose 81 leaves him well in the hunt.

In the Category 2 scores, Adem Wahbi may lead by four from Willem-Aart Vlug, but look out for  Frison Pierjean of France (83) and two men on 84, Mads Hjelm Nielsen of Denmark and Hans van Elven of the Netherlands.

Leading female in the competition is Denmark’s Mette Lynggard – her 87 gross would have been even stronger but for a trio of 7’s out on the course which blotted her scorecard. Best scoring wheelchair golfer is currently Holland’s Jurgen Boon who finished with a net 79 (99 gross).

Mehmet Kazan of Turkey is starring in Category 3, leading the section by 12 from his gross score of 84 and with a net lead of 13 over 2nd place. While Spain’s Sebas Lorente has built a strong lead in the Stableford category, his score of 38 is 5 clear of his nearest challenger.

All to play for on Wednesday. Will Andy Gardiner keep it together to land the title, or will his friends and competitors have something to say about that?

Article by Ben Evans of Cutting Edge Golf