Andalucia preview: Gritty Vincent could be the key for Iron Heads at Valderrama

Written by
Joy Chakravarty, LIV Golf Correspondent
Jul 10 2024
- 4 MIN
S Vincent Iron Heads Andalucia preview STORY image

SOTOGRANDE, Spain – Sometimes, golfers have found their spark in the weirdest situations. Like Iron Heads GC’s Scott Vincent, who lost his clubs and had to play with rental clubs, avoided disqualification by just 30 seconds and incurred a two-shot penalty, and yet managed to secure a top-15 position in last week’s International Series Morocco.

It was a typical Vincent way of dealing with adversity, just like he did last year in LIV Golf when he needed a top-four finish in the season-ending Jeddah event to secure his card for 2024, and did exactly that in rousing fashion.

The 32-year-old Zimbabwean has always possessed the calm of a Zen monk caught in raging storm. He believes there are things he can control, and things he can’t.

At No54 in the season-long Individual Standings, Vincent needs to make his move in the remaining four regular events, and good golf is the only way to do that.

All Vincent needs to do is produce solid rounds like he did over the weekend at Valderrama last year. After opening with a 6-over on Friday, he knuckled down for two solid rounds of 1-under 70 in tough conditions and finished tied 27th, alongside his Captain Kevin Na.

The same Vincent grit was on display in Morocco last week, where he went on a 90-minute journey to the airport to retrieve his clubs, but could not. He returned only to miss his 12:30 tee time and with only 30 seconds remaining for his grace time. Playing with a rental set and with a two-shot penalty even before he hit a single shot, Vincent still managed to shoot a 5-under par 68.

“I have talked a lot to myself about adapting, no matter what, whatever the situation might be. And so just being able to go out there with none of my stuff, even golf shoes, I am taking in the moment, and we will just take it as it comes,” Vincent said after the round.

It was just not Vincent who found form in Rabat. His teammate Jinichiro Kozuma was solo 7th with a 10-under par score.

Captain Na has also been in good form, and should relish the challenge of the tight, cork oak tree-lined fairways of Real Golf Valderrama. The 40-year-old has been excellent in staying away from trouble, and his solidity will be critical for Iron Heads, who are currently at the bottom of the table.

Valderrama is one golf course where distance off the tee is not the most critical part of the game. No Iron Heads player is in the top-25 of the driving distance this season, but the golf course does level the field somewhat.

Danny Lee, the fourth member of the team, and Kozuma are both tied 45th in the Individual Standing, thanks to their tied 9th place in Adelaide. With only the top-48 players keeping their cards for 2025, a good finish this week would go a long way.