You can hear squeals and screams all day but they’re floating in on the fresh sea breeze from the nearby Port Aventura amusement park.

At Lumine Golf Club, which is hosting the Final Stage of the European Tour Qualifying School, 156 European Tour hopefuls are just battling to keep their emotions in check and finish in the top 25 and ties after six rounds.

The screaming is internal.

For Mount Juliet touring professional Gavin Moynihan, a change in the exemption categories for next season means he needs a top-10 finish to improve on the dozen starts he will already get on the European Tour in 2018.

While he birdied his final hole at Lumine’s Hills Course to card a level-par 72 and share 32nd on two-under par after two rounds, he knows he must improve his iron play if he’s to achieve his goal.

“To be honest, I thought I’d be 52nd and near the cut line rather than 32nd,” Moynihan said. “So I am only a couple of shots from where I want to be. Two shots better and I am near the top and I know I have a low one in me because my putter feels good. I have been nowhere near my best.”

Moynihan lost a ball in a tree trying to lay up at his second hole, the par-five 11th, and made a double-bogey seven.

But after bouncing back with four birdies in five holes either side of the turn, he made three bogeys in the next five before a sweet 15-footer dropped for birdie at the ninth.

England’s Tom Murray shot 63 and Italian Andrea Pavan a 68 on the Hills Course to lead by a shot from Switzerland’s Jeff Winther on 10 under par.

Moynihan, 23, is eight strokes off the lead but just three shots outside the top ten in the marathon, six-round test.

But the other three Irish in action are now battling to make the cut for the top 70 and ties after tomorrow’s fourth round.

Derry’s Ruaidhri McGee is two shots outside the projected mark on two over even after he made two late birdies to salvage a one-over 73 on the Hills.

Ardglass’s Cormac Sharvin is 131st on five over after a 74 on the Lakes Course, while Ballymena’s Dermot McElroy is tied 139th on six over after a 75 at the Lumine’s Hills Course.

Two under par after nine holes and back to just one over for the tournament, he frittered away five shots in seven holes with the killer a double bogey seven at the 16th that was all down to mental arithmetic.

“I made a mistake on 16, adding 51 and 16,” confessed McElroy sheepishly.

“I thought it was 76 yards and it was obviously 66, so I flew the green with a wedge into the back bunker and took three more to get down from there.”


Lifestyle

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