Dunne shows true grit with 64: “It was kind of a big round for me"

Dunne shows true grit with 64: “It was kind of a big round for me"
Joost Luiten. Picture: Getty Images

Joost Luiten. Picture: Getty Images

European Tour cards are often earned on the strength of a few hot weeks rather than consistency but if Paul Dunne has to squeak over the line to save his this year, he may well look back on his seven under 64 in the second round of the KLM Open as the most important round of his season.

The Wicklow man’s magnificent, eight-birdie effort helped him soar 95 places up the leaderboard to tied 27th on four under.

And while that’s six shots off the lead held by Bernd Wiesberger, he’s only three strokes outside the top 10 and another juicy cheque after an "on demand" display that augurs well for the future.

“I shot 64 in Dunhill last year and Joburg this year,” Dunne said after lipping out for a career best 63 at his final hole, the ninth. "This is more pleasing, definitely.

"With the position I am on the money list, I am borderline keeping my card at the minute so making it through to every weekend is a help and you never know, I could have a big weekend this weekend. 

"The game is good. I knew a round like this has been coming. Hopefully I can have a few more of them.”

Ranked a perilous 108th in the money list as autumn arrives is not where a rookie wants to be and Dunne’s feat in making the cut at The Dutch rightly made him proud of himself and should act as a great confidence booster for the weekend and what remains of the season.

“It was kind of a big round for me after shooting 74 yesterday,” Dunne told European Tour Radio’s Nick Dye. "I knew I needed to shoot 67 to make the cut today. I am pleased. I got off to a good start anyway. I played pretty solid yesterday but couldn’t get a putt to go in.

"The difference was I made a few putts today, got off to a quick start and kept going. Yesterday I got off to a bit of a slow start and the had loads of chances from eight to 12 feet for birdie all day and when you are two or three over at the start you put a lot of pressure on yourself to have to make them and I kept  lipping out or hitting good putts and misreading. So I wasn’t far off. 

"I knew I had a good round coming. The last few weeks I have been swinging it well.  I got off to a better start today with birdies at my third and fourth holes of the day — 12 and 13th — and once you get a couple under, the shorter birdie putts excite you a bit more.”

When Dunne birdied the 15th, 16th and 17th to go five under for the round he did not let a bogey six at the 18th affect his concentration.

He hit back with a birdie at the first and then made two more, at the par-five sixth and the par-three eighth before lipping out on the ninth for what would have been a career best 63.

“I am pleased with how I played; only one bogey and eight birdies so hopefully I can do the same tomorrow,” said Dunne, who will need another €60,000-70,000 this season to make the Top 110 who keep their cards for 2017.

“I had a good chance from about 15 feet on the last that I lipped out for what would have been my first ever 63.  The first job today was to get through the cut, obviously, but I have shot a few better than I planned so I am in a better position but I think I’m in the middle of the pack. If I shoot something similar tomorrow, I might have a chance going into Sunday but I am just pleased with the day.”

The big goal is to save his card as quickly as he can with a win or a big finish and a 64 is certainly a great sign."

If it was a great day for Dunne, it was a disappointing one for Michael Hoey, who added a 73 to his 69 to miss the cut by one. It was his 17th missed cut from 23 starts this season and at 182nd in the Race to Dubai, the affable Belfast man needs big week soon.

Hoey has averaged 31 putts this year and the 37-year old had 32 yesterday to miss out by the minimum on level par.

Former Spanish Open winner Peter Lawrie, has also struggled on the greens and with just three cuts made from his 10 starts will need a huge finish or a successful trip to Q-School to regain his card.

Joost Luiten will carry home hopes into the weekend after the flying Dutchman posted the lowest round of the week at his home course to move within one stroke of the lead.

With a huge home crowd roaring him on, Luiten produced sparkling seven under par 64 in perfect conditions to charge up the leaderboard and lie just one stroke behind his playing partner Wiesberger, who carded a second round 66 for a ten under total.

With the sun splitting the skies over The Dutch, Luiten treated his adoring public to seven birdies as he seeks to add a second KLM Open title to his 2013 success.

Luiten is joined in a tie for second place by Italy’s Nino Bertasio and Englishman Mark Foster, with the English duo of Ben Evans and Tommy Fleetwood a further stroke back alongside Spain’s Alejandro Cañizares.

Wiesberger made a shaky start to his second round, dropping two strokes in his opening three holes, but the Austrian bounced back brilliantly with three consecutive birdies before adding another four to ensure a one stroke lead into the weekend.

Round two scores

132 B Wiesberger (Aut) 66 66,

133 M Foster (Eng) 67 66, J Luiten (Ned) 69 64, N Bertasio (Ita) 66 67,

134 T Fleetwood (Eng) 67 67, B Evans (Eng) 65 69, A Cañizares (Esp) 67 67,

135 D Gavins (Eng) 70 65, S Hend (Aus) 67 68, D Horsey (Eng) 67 68, S Khan (Eng) 68 67, M Korhonen (Fin) 66 69,

136 G Storm (Eng) 69 67, R Fisher (Eng) 70 66, M Lorenzo-Vera (Fra) 68 68, R Bland (Eng) 67 69, R McEvoy (Eng) 69 67, J Lagergren (Swe) 66 70, J Robinson (Eng) 68 68,

137 M Southgate (Eng) 72 65, D Im (USA) 70 67, M Manassero (Ita) 67 70, N Elvira (Esp) 69 68, C Hanson (Eng) 66 71, S Lee (Kor) 68 69, F Zanotti (Par) 68 69,

138 J Campillo (Esp) 70 68, A Noren (Swe) 69 69, S Jamieson (Sco) 68 70, M Baldwin (Eng) 67 71, P Hanson (Swe) 66 72, D Brooks (Eng) 72 66, O Fisher (Eng) 67 71, Paul Dunne (Irl) 74 64, M Tabuena (Phi) 71 67, B An (Kor) 66 72,

139 N Srithong (Tha) 67 72, C Lee (Sco) 71 68, M Kieffer (Ger) 70 69, J Carlsson (Swe) 68 71, A Levy (Fra) 72 67, S Benson (Eng) 69 70, R Evans (Eng) 73 66,

140 R Dinwiddie (Eng) 71 69, C Wood (Eng) 72 68, N Colsaerts (Bel) 71 69, E Molinari (Ita) 75 65, R Davies (Wal) 71 69, L Bjerregaard (Den) 70 70, B Stone (RSA) 72 68, J Knutzon (USA) 72 68, E De La Riva (Esp) 72 68, S Webster (Eng) 69 71, T Van Der Walt (RSA) 68 72, C Pigem Xammar (Esp) 70 70, F Laporta (Ita) 71 69,

141 L Jensen (Den) 72 69, J Parry (Eng) 74 67, D Burmester (RSA) 70 71, S Gros (Fra) 74 67, R Karlsson (Swe) 69 72, M Lafeber (Ned) 71 70, J Fahrbring (Swe) 70 71, W Besseling (Ned) 73 68, T Linard (Fra) 69 72, J Veerman (USA) 70 71, R Langasque (Fra) 68 73, L Haotong (Chn) 69 72, A Otaegui (Esp) 73 68, P Edberg (Swe) 73 68, P Larrazábal (Esp) 70 71, M Fraser (Aus) 73 68,


142 J Walters (RSA) 70 72, M Carlsson (Swe) 69 73, B Virto (Esp) 70 72, A McArthur (Sco) 73 69, R Paratore (Ita) 70 72, J Roos (RSA) 69 73, M Kraaij (Ned) 73 69, R Wattel (Fra) 72 70, U Van Den Berg (RSA) 72 70, O Wilson (Eng) 77 65, D Drysdale (Sco) 71 71, Michael Hoey (Nir) 69 73, R Jacquelin (Fra) 67 75, B Hebert (Fra) 73 69, D Huizing (Ned) 71 71, L Nemecz (Aut) 71 71,

143 R Ramsay (Sco) 72 71, J McLeary (Sco) 74 69, P Meesawat (Tha) 69 74, T Lewis (Eng) 73 70, R Gonzalez (Arg) 69 74, J Scrivener (Aus) 72 71, T Pilkadaris (Aus) 72 71, J Hugo (RSA) 72 71, D Fichardt (RSA) 73 70, S Chawrasia (Ind) 68 75, T Jaidee (Tha) 72 71, E Pepperell (Eng) 70 73, B Rumford (Aus) 68 75, R Caron (am) (Ned) 66 77,

144 N Ravano (Ita) 72 72, G Havret (Fra) 72 72, R Kakko (Fin) 72 72, L Slattery (Eng) 71 73, G Coetzee (RSA) 76 68, T Detry (Bel) 71 73, S Manley (Wal) 72 72,

145 R Green (Aus) 76 69, G Boyd (Eng) 75 70, B Åkesson (Swe) 69 76, F Fritsch (Ger) 73 72, M Warren (Sco) 70 75, D Howell (Eng) 75 70, P Melching (am) (Ned) 71 74, L Van Meijel (am) (Ned) 76 69,

146 M Madsen (Den) 72 74, A Quiros (Esp) 71 75, S Gallacher (Sco) 73 73, T Fisher Jnr (RSA) 73 73, O Bergqvist (Swe) 72 74, J Hansen (Den) 70 76, L Canter (Eng) 73 73, N Fasth (Swe) 73 73, J Hahn (USA) 72 74, A De Bondt (am) (Bel) 76 70,

147 F Aguilar (Chi) 70 77, T Remkes (Ned) 74 73, A Dodt (Aus) 76 71,

148 M Ford (Eng) 75 73, M Bosch (Ned) 76 72, J Winther (Den) 73 75, H Porteous (RSA) 74 74, M Ilonen (Fin) 73 75, C Kumar (Ind) 76 72, S Dyson (Eng) 76 72,

149 N Holman (Aus) 78 71, V Van Veen (am) (Ned) 78 71,

150 M Siem (Ger) 74 76, Y Yang (Kor) 74 76, J Jeong (Kor) 74 76, D Dixon (Eng) 71 79, R Van West (Ned) 71 79,

151 D Van Den Dungen (Ned) 78 73, J Singh (Ind) 75 76, R Miller (Ned) 76 75,

152 P Bootsma (am) (Ned) 73 79,

153 Peter Lawrie (Irl) 76 77,

154 T Merkx (Ned) 77 77, W De Vries (Ned) 75 79,

** J Busby (Eng) 78 RT, R McGowan (Eng) 74 RT, R Lee (Can) 76 RT, C Shinkwin (Eng) 74 RT, C Berardo (Fra) DQ 0,