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Friday, 07 June 2019
Oitavos Dunes  (Getty Images)
Oitavos Dunes (Getty Images)

The third editon of the GolfSixes Cascais is once again capturing the imagination with innovation, drama and a lot of fun on the agenda at Oitavos Dunes.

Here is everything you need to know from day one in Portugal.

Ace has Jaidee jumping for joy

Thongchai Jaidee will go down in history as a European Tour great with 393 appearances and eight wins to his name coming into this week but he will never have experienced anything like he did on the sixth against Ireland on Friday. Leading 2-1, Thailand were in the driving seat and they looked safe as houses when Phachara Khongwatmai put his tee shot over the swimming pool to inside three feet as the DJ blasted out the tunes. Up steps 49-year-old Jaidee to outdo his playing partner by making a hole-in-one.

Sensational Spaniards

If you were looking at the form tables for the men's teams coming into this week, it would have been hard to look past Jorge Campillo and Nacho Elvira of Spain. Campillo has a win, two seconds and two thirds this season, while Elvira has recovered from five missed cuts to start the campaign to sit at 28th on the Race to Dubai Rankings Presented by Rolex. It should come as no surprise then that with eight birdies from their 18 holes on day one, they won Group D with the most points of any of the 16 teams in the competition.

Fine margins for Australia and Germany

The other form team in the tournament were Germany Women, with both Laura Fuenfstueck and Esther Henseleit sitting inside the top ten on the Ladies European Tour Order of Merit. They claimed a 2-0 win over Australia in the group stages but after three matches they were level alongside Scott Hend and Wade Ormsby on both points and holes won. A play-off followed and when it came down to nearest the pin, Australia were the victors by 19 inches and advanced to face Spain. "Those girls are phenomenal players, phenomenal swingers of the golf club and if we had to go another six holes we probably would have lost," said Hend.

An impressive caddie

Caddies are a vital part of the European Tour. They don't just carry the bag and hand out the clubs, they are a trove of information for their players and a great many of them are fine golfers in their own right - but most of them are not this good. On Friday England Women's Florentyna Parker had Beth Allen on here bag. Yes, that Beth Allen - the 2016 LET Order of Merit winner. Now that's a caddie.

Wattel cuts it fine

The shot clock is yet another popular innovation at the GolfSixes Cascais, giving players just 30 seconds to take their shots. You'd think the tee shot would be the where players are least likely to fall foul but Romain Wattel came mighty close.

Dancing Donaldson at it again

Welshman Jamie Donaldson has long been one of the most popular figures on the European Tour and his fanbase grew recently when he did his best Michael Jackson impression walking through the beer tent on the 14th at the Made in Denamrk presented by FREJA. He was busting a move again in Portugal after holing out for an eagle on the first and when he's hit that shot, who can blame him?

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