From: Professional Golfers' Association
Published: Tue May 10 2005

James Erskine continued in a rich vein of form on Monday (May 9)when he beat a field of 60 fellow trainees at Auchterarder, Scotland, with a three-under-par 66.

His win, in the Scottish qualifier for the Powerade PGA British Assistants’ Championship, came just two days after his victory in the Portpatrick pro-am, which was worth £1,100, and in which he was competing against the country’s top domestic players.

He now leads nine other qualifiers into the Powerade 54-hole final at The London Club, near Brands Hatch, in mid-August, when the winner picks up not only £5,000 but also an invitation to play in the USPGA Assistants’ Championship in Florida at the end of October.

Erskine, in his final year of PGA training, took a modest view of his two-stroke victory. "I didn’t really play all that brilliantly", he observed. "I suppose it was steady enough but nothing outstanding."

He did overlook, though, a superb 5-iron second shot at the 509-yard 15th, which arced 215 yards to within 12 feet of the pin, and two putts gave him the first of three successive birdies. He had five gains in all, and two dropped shots.

Steven Morgan, who knows every blade of grass at Auchterarder, put his local knowledge to fine use. The 19-year-old, who’s undergoing his PGA training at Turnberry Hotel but has been a member of the Perthshire club since he was six, fired a one-under 68, good enough to give him second place, two shots behind Erskine.

Loch Lomond trainee professional, Jonathan Sharp, will also take the high road to London in mid-August. The 26-year-old, who’s in his fifth year at the luxury lochside club, fired a level-par 69 to tie third with Archerfield Links trainee, Chris Russell, son of DJ Russell, and Sandy Aird Jnr.

Jonny, as he prefers to be known, carded four birdies and a bogey – but threatened to derail his performance at the 356-yard 10th, where he pulled his iron second shot into deep trouble and eventually had to mark a double bogey. Qualifiers:
66 – J Erskine (Dumfries & Galloway)
68 – S Morgan (Turnberry Westin)
69 – C Russell (Archerfield), J Sharp (Loch Lomond), S Aird Jnr (Forres)
70 – J Clive (Buchanan Castle), G Duncan (Turnberry Westin), C McCalman
(Turnberry Westin)
71 – K Monaghan (Bothwell Castle), E Hogarth (Peebles) – after a three-way play-

Company: Professional Golfers' Association
Contact Name: Ron Marshall
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