Dawson dives into the weekend chasing Dutch gold

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Robin Dawson (Photo by Oliver Hardt/Getty Images)

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Robin Dawson added a one-under 70 to his opening 66 to move through to the weekend rounds of the B-NL Challenge Trophy just three strokes back at The Dutch.

The Tramore professional, who showed sprouts of his amateur promise with an opening 64 in Finland earlier this month, looks to be turning a corner with his game and carded six birdies, albeit with three bogeys and a double also on his card on Friday to sit lurking in a share of fourth place at six-under par, just three back of Marcus Helligkilde’s halfway lead.

Also safely through to the weekend was experienced swinger Michael Hoey who posted six birdies of his own in a three-under par 68. The Ballymoney pro catapulted more than 30 places up the leaderboard to sit just outside the top-20 overnight at two-under par.

Ireland’s weekend hopes end there after Gavin Moynihan slipped to a second round 74 to miss the one-over cut-mark by a single stroke at two-over.

EuroPro Tour regular Dermot McElroy returned a disappointing 76 to drop out at plus-three while Kinsale’s John Murphy (+6) and Whitehead’s John Ross Galbraith (+11) completed the Irish scoring.

At the top, Helligkilde will take a two-stroke lead into day three after posting a one-under par round of 70 at The Dutch. The overnight leader extended his advantage with an eagle at the par five sixth hole, however this was cancelled out by a double-bogey on the 12th.

The Dane rounded off the day with a birdie on the 18th to get to nine under par, two shots clear of Germany’s Hurly Long and Frenchman Clément Berardo, who both signed for five under par rounds of 66. Helligkilde took a conservative approach on day two at The Dutch and despite some wayward approach play, he was delighted to see his putter save himself par on several occasions.

“I feel the same as yesterday,” he said. “I just did my thing out there and tried to keep the ball in play, hit the centre of the greens and hole some putts. I actually missed a lot of greens today but managed to hole a lot of par putts inside 12 feet so that was good for me to see.”

The 24-year-old admitted it was a mental challenge at times during round two in The Netherlands but was able to remain focused throughout the round due to recent mental coaching methods.

“It’s more of a mental, rather than a physical challenge at the moment and the tasks that I set myself on the course are very specific,” he said. “I have been talking a lot with my coach this week to make sure that I do not get distracted with my task on the course. We have been very specific in order to keep me focused on what I want to do even though I am fatigued and tired out there.

“I’m going to finish this tournament and have a rest next week. I need to get my job done this week and even though it’s sometimes not the best feeling to be out on the course right now but I’m just going to do my best.”

Eight players share fourth place on six under par, including Range Servant Challenge by Hinton Golf winner Craig Howie and Swede Jesper Svensson, who carded a front nine of 29.

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