Future is bright for 15-year old golf sensation Tom McKibbin despite missed cut on European Tour debut
After an extremely impressive debut round at the European Tour's Shot Clock Masters, 15-year old Tom McKibbin struggled in his second round and is likely to miss the cut in Austria.
The Holywood golfer shot a one-under par first round of 71, scoring better than over half of the 120-strong field at Diamond Country Club in Atzenbrugg, but could only card a six-over par 78 in his second round leaving him well adrift of the cut mark.
Having managed the nerves well yesterday, the teenager couldn't replicate his performance on day two and was already back to four-over by the time he made the turn.
McKibbin, playing the course backwards, suffered a double bogey at the 13th, which was followed by dropped shots at the 14th, 17th and 18th. Another double bogey followed at the 2nd, however the young star did finish with something to take away from the week having birdied the 8th.
While he will be bitterly disappointed not to have capitalised on his Thursday round, this marks another step on the right path for golfing wonderkid McKibbin, whose fledgling career goes from strength to strength.
Having won the inaugural Major Champions Invitational in Florida back in March, hosted by Nick Faldo, he has already established himself as one of Europe's leading amateurs - even though he is just 15 years old.
And now, even though he was still competing as an amateur on a sponsor's invite, the teen has announced himself on the professional scene too and will have caught the eye of several onlookers.
Some more sponsors invites could follow, but rest assured it is very unlikely this is the last we've seen of McKibbin among the top golfers in the world.
Have a listen to what the Holywood man had to say at the conclusion of his first round:
This 15 year old shot 1 under par today.— The European Tour (@EuropeanTour) June 7, 2018
Hear what Tom McKibbin made of his day... pic.twitter.com/KNHI5qPPdi
Meanwhile, mercurial Spaniard Miguel Angel Jimenez has rolled back the years and is just one off the lead in Austria at seven-under par after rounds of 67 and 70.
The 54-year old fan favourite is one behind England's Steve Webster, with Denmark's Jeppe Pape Huldahl alongside him. Overnight leader Oscar Lengden of Sweden is also on six-under and is yet to start his second round.
This week's event features a shot clock, which times players to try and improve the pace of play. The first player to hit their shot in each group is allowed 50 seconds to make their stroke once they reach their ball or are able to play, while subsequent players are allowed 40 seconds.
Each player is allowed two extensions of 40 seconds during their round, and any player who exceeds the time limit before they hit their shot is penalised a stroke for the hole.
Belfast Telegraph Digital