The Open 2016: Scott Gregory fades after dream start at Royal Troon
|The 145th Open Championship|
|Venue: Royal Troon, Ayrshire, Scotland Dates: 14-17 July|
|Coverage: Highlights on BBC TV and online, listen live on BBC Radio 5 live and follow live text on the BBC Sport website. Click here for full details|
Hampshire's Scott Gregory had a dream moment at Royal Troon when he briefly led the field on his Open debut.
The 21-year-old stood on the 11th tee at four under par after racking up four up birdies in 10 holes, going to the turn in just 33 shots.
But his tee shot at 11 unluckily left him with an awkward stance.
The Waterlooville amateur hit his approach way right, ended up with a triple-bogey seven, then dropped eight more shots to card a seven-over 78.
With Gregory's two playing partners Sandy Lyle and David Duval also struggling on the 11th hole (Gregory and 1985 Open champion Lyle halved it with a seven to 2001 Open champion Duval's nine), it led to the threeball being harshly warned for slow play.
Gregory flustered by warning
"I've never been put on the clock before," Gregory told BBC Radio Solent. "I then rushed a couple of shots, which I'm ticked off with myself for.
"I wasn't coping with it very well, but Sandy and David were great to talk to. They kept me cool and I've learnt a lot from today. I've realised that next time I've got a bit more time than I thought.
"A few bad things happened on the back nine, starting with that one bad swing on 11. Bizarrely, I'd just said walking up the fairway that's the toughest drive out of the way.
"But, when I got up to the ball, I had a bit of a dodgy stance with the ball below me. The wind was coming off the left and it went down the line of my feet.
"But I have to remember that, at one point, before that bad swing at 11, I was leading the Open.
"That was pretty cool. It would be nice to think that one day I'll still be leading the Open after 72 holes. But next time I get into a position like this, I just hope I can cope a little bit better.
"And 100%, I still think I can make the cut."
High praise from Justin Rose
World number nine Justin Rose, once a Hampshire amateur himself, had a lot of kind words for his county colleague Gregory.
"It's a shame the way he finished," said former US Open champion Rose, who dropped just one shot in his three-under 68. "I saw he was three under after eight holes and going really well.
"It's easy to get ahead of yourself as an amateur, but I know he was playing with Sandy Lyle and David Duval, who were both not having very good rounds, which won't have helped.
"I played a practice round with him," Rose told BBC Sport. "He's got a great golf swing, a great temperament and looks to have a good head on young shoulders. I'm sure he's going to get into a lot more events and get more experience. Hopefully, he's got a big future ahead of him."
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