EDDIE Pepperell was unable to build on his brilliant start at the DS Automobiles Italian Open.

The Abingdon golfer began with an excellent six-under par at Marco Simone GC, in Rome, but slipped backwards as the weekend went on.

Pepperell made the cut with a level-par second round, before picking up five shots in total on Saturday and Sunday to end the tournament one-under.

It was enough for the Frilford Heath member to tie for 46th.

Pepperell was towards the top of the leaderboard at the end of the opening day, only to slip backwards early in his second round.

The 30-year-old bogeyed the fifth and the seventh holes, although he immediately bounced back with birdies at the eighth and ninth.

Pepperell’s back nine was relatively consistent, with a bogey at the tenth and a birdie at the 18th sandwiching a string of pars.

He was still in contention going into the weekend and a dropped shot at the par-three seventh was the only error until the final five holes on Saturday.

There was plenty of drama from then on, as bogeys at the 14th and 15th were followed by a birdie at the 16th.

Another dropped shot at the 18th saw Pepperell card a round of three-over par.

The World No 324 was unable to arrest the slide on the final day, with bogeys at the first, fifth and eighth moving him to level-par for the tournament.

Three successive birdies from the 11th hole onwards pushed him up the standings again, but that was followed by a dropped shot at the 14th.

There was more drama to come, as Pepperell ended with two bogeys after a birdie at the 16th.

He competes at the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth this week, having finished sixth at last year’s tournament.