Golf: Rookie Evans outplays local hero Montgomerie

Sat Jul 16, 2016 11:51am EDT
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By Tony Jimenez

TROON, Scotland (Reuters) - Little-known Ryan Evans was unfazed after being handed a dream pairing with Colin Montgomerie in the British Open third round on Saturday, so much so that the rookie ended up outplaying the eight-times European number one.

Evans, who shook off some early nerves with an opening birdie, went round in 74 while his 53-year-old Scottish partner Montgomerie slid to a 79 in blustery winds of up to 20mph on the west coast of Scotland.

"I just tried not to let the occasion get to me on the first tee," the Englishman told Reuters. "Colin was first on the tee and hit one down the middle so I thought 'let's rip the driver and get going'.

"It's the biggest club in the bag and thankfully I hit a great shot straight down the middle. It was nice then to hole my putt on the green."

Evans, who secured his 2016 tour card at Qualifying School,

said he enjoyed playing alongside Montgomerie who is a member of Royal Troon and whose father was once club secretary.

"He's had a great career, he's a local hero, this is his golf course, so it was nice to play with a lot of people watching and a lot of support for him," said the 29-year-old.

"We had a good chat. He was asking how things have started for me in my was good to speak to him especially after he made a birdie.   Continued...

Ryan Evans plays a chip to the 3rd green during a practice round for the 145th Open Championship golf tournament at Royal Troon Golf Club - Old Course. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports