by Ronan MacNamara
Dermot McElroy by Golffile
Dermot McElroy’s promotion hopes hang in the balance after a second round 78 while William Harrold will take a one-shot lead going into the final day of the 2021 season in The Matchroom Tour Championship at Slaley Hall after the players battled Baltic conditions.
McElroy had a turbulent start to his round with three bogeys in his first five holes, with a birdie on two being the only saving grace of a front nine of 38 as hopes of a quick start diminished.
Things went from bad to worse for the Ballymena native with a double bogey six on the 12th. A birdie on 13 steadied the ship but the Cubefunder winner had a horror finish as he finished with three consecutive bogeys to slip to ten-over.
Crucially it means McElroy has dropped out of the top-5 in the Order of Merit, meaning he won’t get a full Challenge Tour card next season unless he can produce something special in the final round.
At 8th in the standings, McElroy could have to settle for category 20 status on the European Tour’s second tier next season.
Only sixteen players shot under par rounds in round two, leaving just eleven players in the red overall through two rounds.
Harrold who plays out of Sheringham Golf Club shot a second round of 70 with the highlight being an eagle at the 6th as he hit back after two early bogeys.
Harrold, at six-under is one clear of Wednesday’s first round leader Jack McDonald and Dan Brown.
On a day of tough scoring Callum Farr shot the round of the day thanks to a four-under 68 and move up to 12th on the leaderboard.