Calum Hill is hoping last week’s strong showing at the Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open will be the catalyst for an upturn in form ahead of this week’s Euram Bank Open at Golf Club Adamstal in Austria.
The Kirkcaldy native progressed through a qualifier to book his spot in the Rolex Series event and ended the week as the low Scot, in a tie for 26th place on 15 under par, with the highlight being a bogey-free 64 on day two with his friends and family watching on.
Hill has experienced a mixed season so far, with two top tens and three missed cuts in seven European Challenge Tour starts in 2019 but after a good week on the European Tour last week, he is now ready to kickstart his season.
“The Scottish Open was a brilliant experience,” he said. “It was nice to be competing at home with big crowds out on the course and nice weather, it was good.
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“I wouldn’t say I really noticed the big crowds that much, but it was nice to have family there and friends being able to watch a bit of the golf so they can see what I do.
“My season has been a little slow so far so I’m looking forward to a stronger finish, ideally, and hopefully last week will spur me on a little bit.
“Whether it’s the Scottish Open or in the Austrian hills it doesn’t really make a difference, it’s still a golf course. I played here last year and I quite liked it so I’m looking forward to it.”
At just 6,476 yards, GC Adamstal is one of the shortest courses on the Challenge Tour International Schedule but the tight tree-lined course is by no means a stroll, with the steep hills and demanding tee shots making it a real test of golf.
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“The golf course is hilly – well, to be fair, the holes themselves aren’t too bad, there a couple that are really steep, but it’s the walk in between that is challenging,” Hill said.
“I think your tee ball is quite important here. It’s not super narrow but it can get away from you, especially because the ball goes a bit further here so being off line, it goes a little further off line.
“I played nine holes yesterday and the greens spin quite a lot so it’s important to control your distances.”
Joining Hill in Austria is defending champion Darius van Driel, who has played in the final group in each of his last two events as he goes in search of earning back-to-back Euram Bank Open titles, as well as Steven Tiley, who secured his maiden Challenge Tour title at Le Vaudreuil Golf Challenge last week.
The first round of the Euram Bank Open begins at 7:30 am local time on Thursday July 17, with Hill playing alongside home favourite Martin Wiegele and three-time European Tour winner Grégory Havret at 1:35 pm local time.