Ryder Cup: Stephen Gallacher fires a 65 at Italian Open to re-ignite qualification hopes
Last Updated: 29/08/14 7:26pm
Stephen Gallacher is hoping for more of the same over the weekend at the Italian Open after a 65 on Friday rekindled his hopes of qualifying for the Ryder Cup.
The Scotsman started his week in Turin knowing he needed to finish in the top two places at the tournament to oust Graeme McDowell from the final automatic place in Europe’s team for Gleneagles.
It would be nice to follow it up with more of the same. I knew I had to go low at some stage and I'm just delighted to get on a run on the back nine.
He left himself with work to do after an opening 72, and it seemed he may not end up on the right side of the cut line when he was one under midway through his second round.
But the 39-year-old bounced back in style after the turn, coming home in just 30 shots as six birdies saw him sign for a 65.
He sits on seven under at the halfway stage, eight adrift of leader Hennie Otto after the South African managed a round of 62. However, second-placed Bernd Wiesberger is well within Gallacher's sights.
"When you tee it up 15 and 12 behind you know you're going to have to be more aggressive and make some birdies so I was delighted to shoot 65 with a double bogey in the end," said Gallacher.
"It would be nice to follow it up with more of the same. I knew I had to go low at some stage and I'm just delighted to get on a run on the back nine.
"I don't think I could say on air what I was thinking when I saw the leaderboard at lunch. It was a strange feeling. I was looking at the guy who was second to be honest to try and catch him up a bit and a couple more 65s at the weekend and we will see what happens.
"There are two more rounds and a lot can happen in golf. Just to be in with a shout on Sunday is all you can ask."
The Italian Open is the final qualifying event for the Ryder Cup, with Gallacher desperate to make his debut in the event at a course situated just 35 miles from his home.