TWO Dunblane golfers have won an opportunity to play at Carnoustie, just days before the world’s greatest player’s tee off at the 147th Open Championship.

Richard McCluckie and Gary Aitken from Dunblane New Golf Club secured a place at the R&A 9-Hole Championship Final, which will be held at Carnoustie Links on Saturday, July 14, having qualified during the competition’s preliminary stages at Milnathort Golf Club last month.

The Dunblane team is one of four Scottish teams qualifying from a field of 270 and will go on to play against golfers from England, Ireland and Wales.
The final will take place just five days before The Open Championship, which will see some of the sport’s biggest names and brightest new stars take to the Scottish course in one of the most anticipated competitions in world sport.

Fraser Munro, head of events at Scottish Golf, said: “We were thrilled to see so many clubs from across Scotland participate in the initial rounds of the tournament, competing for the chance to play in the Grand Final at Carnoustie, less than a week before The Open.

“It’s great to see more players embracing a shorter format of the game, and we hope the success of this year’s competition will engage more players to try 9-hole play in future.

"We wish all competitors, including Richard and Gary, the best of luck in the final this Saturday.”

As Scottish Golf continues to encourage shorter formats of the game, each affiliated club in Scotland was invited to host a qualifying event during the early part of the season, with the winning pair from each club earning a place in the preliminary rounds at Milnathort.