Day One report
Rhys Enoch holds a one stroke advantage at the Monaghan Irish Challenge at the end of Day One after carding a six under par round of 66.
The Welshman made five birdies, one bogey and an eagle to end the day at the top of the leaderboard at Concra Wood Golf Club, signing for his lowest Irish Challenge round in his third appearance at the event.
Enoch, who finished tied 13th at Galgorm Resort & Spa Northern Ireland Open, presented by Modest! Golf, started brightly in Castleblayney with a birdie on the first before another gain on the par five fourth to card a bogey-free front nine. His only blemish of the round came on the tenth hole before he began a stunning finish to his opening round.
A 20-foot birdie putt on the 14th started his surge to the top of the leaderboard as he eagled the par five 15th, parred the 16thand then finished with back-to-back birdies. With wet and windy conditions greeting the players in the afternoon, Enoch was delighted to post a strong opening score.
“I’m really, really pleased with the round,” he said. “I knew it was going to be a tough day, so I knew it was important to stay patient and build the round, which I did really well. I finished the last five holes five under par, which was a really nice way to end the round.
“I made two key saves at 11 and 12 to stop going back to level par because I had played a nice front nine before bogeying the tenth. I didn’t birdie 13 which was really annoying, but I hit a nice shot into the par three 14th and made a 20-foot putt, then I knocked my approach into the par five 15th and made a 60-foot putt across the green.
“All of a sudden, I was four under and then I played well on the last two, where I nearly holed my wedge on 17. It was a nice round which came out of nowhere, but I felt like I really took advantage of the conditions.
Hot on the tail of the Welshman are Thomas Linard, Bradley Moore and Ricardo Santos, who all battled the elements in the afternoon, to card rounds of 67, five under par, and lie one stroke behind Enoch.
Seven players share fifth place on four under par, including Calum Hill, who triumphed in Northern Ireland earlier in the year. Leading the charge on home soil are Brian Casey and Paul McBride, who are four shots behind Enoch, following rounds of 70, two under par.
Darkness brought an end to Day One at 6.52pm with almost all of the 120-player field able to successfully complete their first round, while the remaining five groups will conclude their final holes on Friday morning at 8.30am. Round two will begin as per original published times.