Mena Tour News Information and Results

Jake Shepherd fires 2 rounds of 67 to jump into a healthy five shot lead going into the final round of the Ras Al Khaimah Classic

Jake Shepherd fired back-to-back rounds of five-under-par 67 to jump into a healthy five-shot lead going into the final round of the Ras Al Khaimah Classic, the second event on the MENA Golf Tour, at the Tower Links Golf Club on Tuesday.

The 21-year-old prodigy from England, by his own admission, went “a bit wild” on the back nine, reeling off seven birdies, including five in a row from the 14th, to end the day with a broad smile lighting up his face.
Three other Englishmen in the field, Peter Richardson, Ross Canavan and Yasin Ali, along with Pakistan’s Matloob Ahmed matched Shepherd’s 67—the day’s best score – to charge back into contention for a strong finish.
Richardson, who picked four shots on the back nine, and Yasin Ali, who eagled the par-5 seventh, were tied for second place on five-under-par 139 along with overnight leader Ahmed-Reda Rhazani, who signed off with a level par 72 while Matloob and Canavan shared the fifth place on four under par 140 for 36 holes.

Morocco’s Faycal Serghini and Lindsay Renolds of Canada were a further shot adrift on three under-par 141. Experienced Ross Bain was one over par 145 after carding a second round 71.

Unruffled by shifting winds that made life difficult for players, Shepherd made a quiet start before exploding on the back nine where he shot a sizzling 30 with just one dropped shot. “It was a tough task on the front nine, but my approach shots started working well later in the day.

“I hit most my approaches to within 10 yards of the pin. Except for a long 25-yard putt (on the 17th), I don’t think I had any trouble in holing birdie putts,” said Shepherd, who was encouraged to compete in the event by his friend Zane Scotland, the winner of the Abu Dhabi Golf Citizen Open.
“I think he (Zane) will be very pleased with my work and so will be my father. This is the very first time that I am away from home without my father. He will be really proud of my achievement.  I don’t think ever in my golfing career I had five birdies in a row,” said Shepherd, who took to golf when he just four.

England’s Canavan attributed his 67 to hitting all greens on the back nine and making some clutch putts. “To be honest I didn’t drive that well, but my iron play was phenomenal. Of late, I have struggling with my putting, but today I managed to sink some in, especially on both the par-3 holes on the back nine.
“Club selection was a big issue because of high winds, but I managed to keep plugging away,” said Canavan, who started with a bogey, but finished with a flourish with a birdie on the 18th. “I am still struggling to read the greens, but if I can keep the momentum rolling into the final day, I can finish strongly,” said the Marcel Siem lookalike.
Pakistan’s Matloob Ahmed, like Canavan, shot 34 on the front nine and 33 on the back nine. “I have been striking the ball well, but it was poor putting that prevented me from posting good numbers. Today, I made some solid putts and that made the difference,” said the ace Pakistani professional.

The cut was made at 11 over par 155 with 50 players making it to Wednesday’s final round. The first group tees off at 7.30 am and the last at 10.10am on Wednesday.

Leading scores after second round (par 72)
134 – Jake Shepherd (England) 67 67
139 – Peter Richardson (England) 72 67, Ahmed-Reda Rhazali (Morocco) 67, 72, Yasin Ali (UAE) 72 67
140 – Matloob Ahmed (Pakistan) 73 67, Ross Canavan 73 67
141- Lindsay Renolds (Canada) 69 72, Faycal Serghini (Morocco) 71 70
143 – Chris Chamberlain (England) 72 71, Shahid Murtaza Javed Ahmed (Pakistan) 70 73
144 – Andrew Odoh (Nigeria) 73 71
145 – Aadil Jehangir (Pakistan) 69 76, Ross Bain (UK) 74 71.
146 – Simon Dunn (UK) 73 73

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