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Page last updated at 15:18 GMT, Monday, 31 May 2010 16:18 UK

Martin Laird relishing returning home for Scottish Open

Martin Laird in action at the 2009 Scottish Open
Laird finished 10th at last year's Scottish Open at Loch Lomond

Martin Laird will return home from the United States to play in the Scottish Open at Loch Lomond before a dream chance to play the Open at St Andrews.

The 27-year-old Glaswegian is based in Arizona and made the cut to appear at the Old Course in July at the International Final Qualifier in Texas.

Laird was "extremely excited" to be teeing off at Loch Lomond again.

"I look forward to having another good tournament on one of the best golf courses in the world," he said.

The former Colorado State University student carded a second-round 63 in the Dallas qualifier to clinch his place at St Andrews the week after the Scottish Open, where he will be supported by his parents, who live nearby.

In October, he beat Chad Campbell and George McNeill in a play-off to win his first US PGA Tour title, the Justin Timberlake event at TPC Summerlin in Las Vegas.

And Laird finished joint 10th at the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial on Sunday.

It's fantastic to play on home soil where all the tournaments are like majors to the Scots

Stephen Gallacher

At 110 in the world rankings, Laird is the highest-placed Scot and hopes to improve on last year's debut at Loch Lomond, where he was one shot off the lead after the first round before going on to finish 10th.

"I am extremely excited and honoured to be given the opportunity to tee it up in the Barclays Scottish Open at Loch Lomond once again," he said.

"I had a fantastic time last year and I have been looking forward since then to having the chance to play in my home Open again.

"The support I received from the home crowd was brilliant."

Laird will be joined by Colin Montgomerie, the only Scot to have won at Loch Lomond.

Europe's Ryder Cup captain said: "The fans are incredible - knowledgeable and enthusiastic - and I really appreciate the support they show me.

"As a past champion, the event holds special memories for me. There is nothing I would love more than to lift the trophy once again."

Also teeing off will be Aberdeen's Richie Ramsay, the only Scot to have won on the European Tour this season, and compatriots Andrew Coltart, Alastair Forsyth, Paul Lawrie, Gary Orr and Marc Warren.

Stephen Gallacher, a former touring professional at the course, will hope to continue the form he showed in finishing fourth in the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth.

"It's one of my favourite courses and it's fantastic to play on home soil, where all the tournaments are like majors to the Scots," he said.

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see also
Laird recovers to seal Open place
25 May 10 |  Golf
Kaymer clinches Scottish Open win
12 Jul 09 |  Golf
Golf on the BBC
01 Jul 11 |  Golf

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