Lucky break gives Roe share of Scandinavian lead

ON the same course where he once hit a six-inch putt 45 yards back down the fairway, England’s Mark Roe snapped a club into three pieces yesterday.

But instead of a fine, the 43-year-old found himself in a share of the lead and chasing the £182,000 first prize in the EnterCard Scandinavian Masters.

Roe’s second-round 65 at Barseback ended in amazing fashion with a birdie on the 18th despite snapping his club while playing his approach shot from behind a tree.

"I was about a foot away from it and if I hit the shot I wanted to, I would definitely have broken my arm or my wrist," explained Roe.

"The other option was to aim 30 yards left and hit a big cut with a 7-iron but even that was risky. I knew the club would snap and it could come back and stab me in the arm.

"What I am trying to say is I’m incredibly brave and luck favours the brave. I hit it well and it landed about six feet from the pin."

Holing the putt gave Roe a 10-under-par halfway total of 134 and a share of the lead with Belgium’s Nicolas Colsaerts, who carded his second consecutive 67.

Sweden’s Fredrik Jacobson was two shots back on eight under after bogeys on the last two holes in a 67.

After a 77-minute delay due to a thunderstorm, Scotland’s Marc Warren completed a second round of 69 to join Jacobson in third place on eight under.

As for the incident back in 1995 which saw him disciplined by tour officials, Roe recalled: "I made an 11 at the 12th hole and a 10 at the 13th. On the 12th I hit a six-inch putt 45 yards back down the fairway — an emotional meltdown I suppose.

"I got fined £2,000 because I wrote to the tour committee and said in my defence it did hit the lip."

Roe currently lies 144th on the Order of Merit and in danger of losing his card after 21 years on tour, but revealed he would happily retire if he failed to keep his playing privileges.

"I’m 43 years old and I never really intended to play this long," added Roe, who was famously disqualified from the British Open at Sandwich in 2003 when leading in the clubhouse during the third round due to a scorecard mix-up with playing partner Jesper Parnevik.

"I have beautiful twin daughters and I just miss them incredibly and want to see more of them. Emily said to me the other week ‘Daddy, can you play all your tournaments at Effingham (my local club) and then you could come home every night.’ When your kids start saying that it is time to take another look at it and this is not the most important thing in my life.

Overnight joint leader Benn Barham — still playing with borrowed clubs after his failed to arrive from London on Tuesday — could only manage a 73 to drop back to four under.