Turner records two top-10 finishes on the Algarve

Ashton Turner.
Ashton Turner.

Golfer Ashton Turner made a good start to his first full year as a professional with a pair of top 10 finishes in the Algarve last week.

Turner finished tied for sixth at the 36-hole Duvalay Classic at the Quinta do Lago course, in Portugal, last Wednesday, but would have hoped for more after an excellent start to the tournament.

The 20-year-old, who turned professional last August, birdied the opening two holes and reached the turn at three-under after a bogey-free front nine.

A double-bogey at the par three 11th undid some of the good work, but Turner recovered superbly to birdie the next two holes and then the 17th to finish Tuesday’s round at four-under.

The score left him in a share for sixth place, and just two shots off the lead in the 71-man field.

Scoring proved tougher the following day with only three golfers breaking 70, but Turner again started well as he birdied the par-five second once again and then picked up another shot at the fifth.

For the second day running he produced an unblemished front nine to reach the turn at six-under overall.

But he was undone once again at the 11th, this time with a bogey, and then dropped another stroke at the next.

A third bogey of the day came at the 14th, but it was sandwiched between birdies at 13 and 15 in a rollercoaster back nine.

Turner, from Alford, stood handily-placed at five-under overall, but he finished the round with a six and five, dropping two further strokes to complete a one-over round of 73.

His three-under aggregate kept him in a share for sixth, six shots behind winner Ricardo Santos, and four adrift of best-placed Englishman, Billy Spooner, in second spot.

The event was the second of back-to-back tournaments for Turner on the Algarve Pro Tour as he continued preparations for the new season.

He battled his way to a one-over par 73 in the opening round of the Tile Classic, which began the previous Sunday, after an eventful round of four birdies, three bogeys and a double.

The second and final round did not start well either, with two further strokes dropped in the first seven holes. But there would be no further dropped shots as Turner hit back brilliantly.

A birdie at nine was followed by a run of three further birdies in the final five holes to finish two-under for the round for a one-under aggregate total. It lifted him five places up the final leaderboard into a share of 10th in the 81-man international field, five strokes adrift of home winner Ricardo Melo Gouveia.