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Robert MacIntyre attributed his flying start to the PGA Championship to his much-needed return to home comforts.

MacIntyre, the sole Scot in the field at Valhalla, spent an extended period in his beloved Oban in April before returning Stateside to continue an eye-opening debut season on the PGA Tour.

And after an encouraging T13 finish in the Myrtle Beach Classic in South Carolina, MacIntyre posted a bogey-free 66 in Kentucky in his first major start of the season.

MacIntyre birdied the second, fourth, seventh, 11th and 12th on the way to his lowest round in his major history.

Asked what has inspired his upturn in form, MacIntyre admitted: “To be honest, I think it was spending some time back at home in Scotland. It’s no secret I’ve been living in America. It’s been tough. It’s not like Oban.

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“When I go back home, it’s a lot of friends and family you get to spend time with, my nieces, everyone that’s close to me and really cares for me. When I’m in America, it’s just me, my girlfriend, and we’re trying to live as good a life as we can.

“But it’s difficult when we’re both so close to family and friends. I got three weeks at home there and hardly touched the golf clubs, done some stupid stuff and just enjoyed myself.”

Once again, MacIntyre was incredibly open about the challenges he has faced as a first-time PGA Tour card-holder and settling into a new life in Florida.

“It’s just a different environment on the PGA Tour,” he told reporters. “It’s very much business. There’s not as much chatting that goes on. In Europe, we travel the world. You know what I mean, we go to Asia, the Middle East. We go all over the place.

“When you’re in these countries and you don’t speak the local language, you kind of have to stick together. There’s just a group of guys that I kind of hang about with in Europe that make life on the road a lot easier. Out here, it’s me and my girlfriend, who I feel like we do a good job in trying to enjoy it as much as we can.”

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Playing his first two rounds at Valhalla with 1991 PGA champion John Daly, MacIntyre knows he is most dangerous on the golf course when he is having fun.

He added: “I’ve come this week. I’ve got my mum out. She’s cooking and cleaning for my whole team. I’m having too many cakes and desserts this week. But we’re having a good time.

“When I can be around friends, family, people closest to me, people that actually care about me, they speak to me as Bob the human rather than Bob the golfer. I think that’s when I’m at my happiest, when I’m not talking about golf, golf, golf. Life is actually more important than what I’m doing out here.

“It was a solid round of golf. I managed to stay disciplined, had better acceptance of the poorer shots and just managed it around a tough golf course really well today. It was a decent score.”

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Ben Parsons joined bunkered as a Content Producer in 2023 and is the man to come to for all of the latest news, across both the professional and amateur games. Formerly of The Mirror and Press Association, he is a member at Halifax Golf Club and is a long-suffering fan of both Manchester United and the Wales rugby team.

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