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Honma Hong Kong Open

Hong Kong Open: Scottish quartet join European Tour, ‘wind-up merchants’ only allowed to prank on practise days though

  • Scotsmen Grant Forrest, Liam Johnston, David Law and Robert MacIntyre all officially joined the European Tour today
  • MacIntyre said there’s a ‘comfort’ in knowing they have good lads on tour
PUBLISHED : Thursday, 22 November, 2018, 5:59pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 22 November, 2018, 6:36pm

Scottish golfer Robert MacIntyre, who began life as a fully fledged European Tour player today with three of his fellow Scotsmen and good friends, said there’s a rule: no high jinks on playing days.

“Only on practise days. Outside of that it’s pretty serious. Maybe once in a while someone will do something, maybe,” MacIntyre said with a sly grin of the antics he, Grant Forrest, Liam Johnston and David Law, all whom are under 28, get up to.

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MacIntyre, 22, shot a one over par on his first round at the Hong Kong Open today and said joining the European Tour has been a bit overwhelming, but having three good friends from his home country taking the leap along with him has been a huge help.

MacIntyre recently tied for sixth at the Ras Al Khaimah Challenge Tour Grand Final in the United Arab Emirates earlier this month.

All four graduated from the Challenge Tour at the same time and are cutting their pro teeth together this week at the Open.

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Back when winters were spent in a @usdgolf shirt and shorts ☀️ #nosnow

A post shared by Grant Forrest (@grantforrest93) on Jan 21, 2018 at 8:15am PST

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“It’s a comfort thing really,” said MacIntyre about having his fellow Scots by his side. “Simple things like having someone to go to dinner with and someone who listens to the same music as you. You have a lot of down time and we’ve all roomed together.”

Forrest, who finished even after the first round, said being a professional golfer means you are spending the majority of your time away from your friends and family and living out of a hotel room. He finished one spot ahead of MacIntyre at the UAE tournament and said being on the road all the time does take its toll.

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Hong Kong this week for the @honmahkopen Some venue to get the 2018/19 @europeantour season underway

A post shared by Liam Johnston (@liamjohnston93) on Nov 21, 2018 at 12:15am PST

“It can be a pretty lonely place,” said the 25-year-old. “It definitely makes life a lot easier having them around. We share hotel rooms, and if you do want time on your own the guys understand. So there’s a good camaraderie we have going.”

He said the two pranksters are MacIntyre and Johnston, the “wind-up merchants” of the group, however none would divulge any recent high jinks on record. Johnston and Law also finished their first rounds one over par.

Forrest admits he did not have the best sleep last night in his hotel room, nothing to do with the other boys of course, as he kicked off his rookie European Tour season this morning with some nerves.

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However he obviously showed up when it mattered. Forrest started off his round with a birdie and said the composite course is a tough one, and then there was the wind added on top.

“If you miss it short, you’re not in a good place. If you miss it long, it’s just as bad. So it really forces you to hit good shots all the time. You have to put your expectations down a bit,” he said, noting the wind wreaked havoc on all the players during the first round.

“I think acceptance is a big part of it, you’re going to hit good shots that just do not turn out OK.”