Week 31 was a busy one on the British mainland, with England, Scotland and Wales all holding their national amateur championships.
In England it was Tommy Fleetwood who emerged triumphant, defeating Surrey’s Warren Harmston by just one hole. The Lancastrian, who plans to turn professional in the near future, had trailed by two holes with just seven left to play in the 36-hole final at Little Aston Golf Club, but he rallied over the closing holes to clinch victory by the narrowest of margins.
“I was due a win in a national event,” said Fleetwood, who ascends seven places up the Ranking to ninth. “I was shocked to be two down after 11 holes this afternoon and it didn’t look promising. I hit good putts on the tenth and 11th, but I wasn’t getting the run of the ball. But from then on my game turned round completely.
“All I was thinking all the way round I didn’t want to end my amateur career on a low. But I hit some good birdies and it all came right in the end.”
Meanwhile, Michael Stewart was crowned Scottish Amateur Champion after overcoming fellow countryman Jordan Findlay 3&2 in the 36-hole final, which was held on Gullane’s No 1 Course.
The 20-year-old, who won the Scottish Boys Championship two years ago, was made to fight all the way by Findlay, himself a former winner of the Boys Amateur Championship. A four-hole lead was cut in half to just two, with three holes to play, but Stewart responded as he had done all week, fizzing a seven-iron to seven feet at the par-three, 16th hole before calmly rolling the putt in for a winning birdie.
“It’s a very special moment for me winning the Scottish Amateur Championship here at Gullane,” explained Stewart, this week’s WAGRank 96 after a 49-place jump. “Jordan played some fantastic golf, but I got some good breaks and hit great shots at crucial times. I went out this afternoon as if I was still level and needed to be at my best to hold him off.”
“It’s a fantastic achievement and extra special to have my dad on the bag and family and friends through from Troon,” he added.
In Wales, it was Alastair Jones who won his national championship, beating Wales colleague Oliver Farr 3&1 in the final at Tenby Golf Club. Jones moves up to 560th in the Raking after rising 15 positions.
“Congratulations to Alastair for his fine win in Tenby, he played really well all week and it was good to see two of our top players going head to head in the final,” said Nigel Edwards, the Golf Union of Wales Director of Player Development and Coaching.