Football legend Gareth Bale beats his own pro as he goes low at Carnoustie

Gareth Bale shoots a fantastic round of 1-under 71 at Carnoustie, the toughest course on the three-track rota at this week's Alfred Dunhill Links Championship. 

Andy Roberts's picture
Thu, 5 Oct 2023
Football legend Gareth Bale beats his own pro as he goes low at Carnoustie

Football legend Gareth Bale shot a fantastic round of 1-under 71 in the first round of the Dunhill Links Championship. 

Former Real Madrid and Spurs winger Bale has a handicap of 0.5 so we all should not be too surprised about the round.

However, Carnoustie is the toughest of the three courses in operation in this week's DP World Tour Pro-Am event.

Bale even outperformed his own team partner and 2020 Wales Open champion Romain Langasque, who carded a 2-over 74.

Bale was playing off further forward tees than Langasque, but the score was still very impressive given the former Wales captain remains an amateur golfer. 

Langasque and Bale teamed up for an opening round of 6-under par, but that sees them well down the board as things stand in the team event

They do, however, get to play the easier of the three courses in Kingsbarns and the Old Course at St Andrews on Friday and Saturday.

The top 20 teams qualify for the final round at St Andrews on Sunday.

Bale retired from football at the start of this year following a spell at Los Angeles FC. 

He scored 141 goals in 349 appearances at four different clubs - Southampton, Tottenham, Real Madrid and Los Angeles. 

Bale also scored 41 goals in 111 appearances for Wales. 

Speaking after the round, Bale told Sky Sports Golf's Robert Lee: 

"We had a great day. To be fair the first six or seven holes we couldn't have asked for better weather, then the wind and rain came in and it was a great test. It was the first time I had been here and it's an incredible golf course.
"I shot 1-under today. The tees were a bit further forward so I could obviously take advantage of my distance and stuff, so it was good, I can't complain."

He was then shown a number of clips of his round, including some fantastic little chip shots around the green.

Related: Sky Sports announces Ryder Cup record viewers but NBC figures decline

Bale added: 

"Yeah, the short game is probably the strongest part of my game. Chipping and putting is good, it's just my driving where I need to sometimes to stop the wild shots."

Lee then asked Bale: "How good can you become at golf you reckon?"

Bale replied: 

"I don't know to be honest. I haven't done loads of practice. But now I'm retired I can spend more time on the practice range and we'll see what happens."

Arsenal fan Piers Morgan was also in Bale's group, to which the ex-Spurs player said: 

"I needed more than ear plugs around Piers, it didn't work unfortunately."

Bale helped Team Monty win the Celebrity Ryder Cup at Marco Simone before the Ryder Cup got underway last week.

He also played alongside Rory McIlroy in the BMW PGA Pro-Am at Wentworth. 

McIlroy was impressed by Bale's game.

WATCH: Golf fans in disbelief at Bale's '177 mph' ball speed

The format for the team competition in the Dunhill Links is net best ball.

That means the professional and the amateur each play each hole.

The score counts for the player that has the better score once two-thirds of each amateur's handicap is factored.

Adri Arnaus, Peter Uihlein and Sebastian Soderberg currently lead the way in the professional tournament on 8-under par. 

Uihlein is playing alongside LIV Golf boss Yasir Al-Rumayyan this week. 

They combined for a round of 9-under par.

Although Uihlein is a LIV Golf player, he was permitted to compete in this week's tournament under an invite from tournament sponsor and South African businessman Johann Rupert. 

He had also terminated his DP World Tour card well before joining LIV Golf. 

Al-Rumayyan is playing in the same group as R&A chief Martin Slumbers. 

Of the three European Ryder Cup players in the field, Matt Fitzpatrick opened brightly with a 5-under 67 at Carnoustie. 

Tommy Fleetwood carded a 3-under 69, one stroke better than Bob MacIntyre


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