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Flooded course holds up play

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Colin Montgomerie

Colin Montgomerie

Colin Montgomerie

Play at the Barclays Scottish Open will not begin until 2pm at the earliest on Saturday after overnight rain flooded the course at Castle Stuart.

No spectators were being admitted in the morning such was the severity of the downpour, which followed on from two rain stoppages on Friday.

Those delays meant that the second round could not be completed, and that will now remain the case for the best part of the day.

A decision will be made at midday about the possibility of play beyond 2pm at the course near Inverness.

The rain had at least eased off by 8am, but the forecast was not good - more showers for the rest of the day and perhaps an isolated thunderstorm overnight.

The one advantage the tournament had was that if conditions improved sufficiently there would be the light to continue play until 10pm or maybe even a little later.

It was a shame for the event, though, because a bumper crowd was expected over the weekend to see not only five of the world's top nine, but also two home players at the top of the leaderboard and Colin Montgomerie - like Jamieson and many others - trying to earn a last-gasp spot in The Open.

That was going to the leading non-exempt player providing he finished in the top five.

Championship director Peter Adams said: "We're keeping the course closed until further notice, but are doing everything we can to make it playable and if we can ensure it is safe for everybody we will open later in the day.

"It's such a shame because we were on course to have 50,000 people for the week. It might even have got up to 60,000 and if we had done that in the first year here it would have been fantastic."

PA


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