Ras Al Khaimah: English duo Zane Scotland and Craig Hinton shot identical five-under-par 67s to lead after day one of the Ras Al Khaimah Classic, round four of the 19-stage Mena Golf Tour season, at Tower Links Golf Club on Monday.
Scotland carded eight birdies, including four on his first five holes, and three bogeys, in blustery conditions, while Hinton birdied four of his final five holes to pull level.
“I made some good putts early in the round and that kind of set the tone for the day,” said Scotland, a record ten-time winner on tour. “Overall it was a pretty solid round, especially my approaches were very close and that helped me keep going.”
Miles Tunnicliff finished a shot adrift of Scotland and Hinton in third at four under par. The Englishman picked up four shots in six holes after opening with a bogey on his front nine, before finishing with two birdies after an early bogey on his return.
“I played pretty solid golf,” said Tunnicliff. “I drove the ball well and hit some very good iron shots close to the pin, especially on the front nine. I struggled a little bit at the start of my back nine, but managed to finish strongly with two late birdies. I made six birdies, all from within five or six feet which was great.”
Eight players share a tie for fourth two strokes off the lead, including leading UAE amateur Rayhan Thomas. The 16-year-old recovered from a double bogey start with three birdies on his front nine, before returning with three birdies and a bogey.
“I really played well and made very few mistakes after a disappointing start,” said Thomas, who leads the amateur division by a shot over Brazil’s Tiago Lobo, with Saudi Arabia’s Othman Al Mullah lying third on level-par. “If I can keep the momentum rolling all the way through, it will be great, but I don’t want get ahead of time and will take things as they come.”