No Faldo Series luck
GOLF by Alan Booth: DESPITE some fine performances, including an eight under par 64 by James Watts, the lowest round of the event, the six Herts players in the Faldo Series grand final in Brazil, missed out on an age group title. In a tense battle between
GOLF by Alan Booth: DESPITE some fine performances, including an eight under par 64 by James Watts, the lowest round of the event, the six Herts players in the Faldo Series grand final in Brazil, missed out on an age group title.
In a tense battle between fellow England boy internationals in the under-18 group, Tom Lewis staged a fine fightback after trailing by four strokes after his opening round, but the title of Faldo Series Champion went to Jonathan Bell of Royal Blackheath by one stroke.
British Boys champion Lewis from Welwyn Garden City opened with 74 to Bell's 70, but cut the deficit by one stroke with 68 in the second round and made a brave bid in the final round, marred by dropped shots at 17 and 18, to finish with 71 to 73, to lose by a stroke.
For Tom Shadbolt it was also a close call, as he tied for the lead in the under-21 group, but the title went to Brazil's Pedro Costa Lima on countback with a final round 68 to 69, with the pair finishing two under par for 214 total after misfortune had struck the Mid Herts player. He was taken ill on the second day with a stomach upset, which prevented him practising before the final round, played in hot and humid conditions, during which he lost two balls. Sam Towler (Letchworth) was also taken ill and never hit a ball in the event.
For Watts, on his second visit to Brazil in the Faldo Series, it seemed the under-21 title was there for the taking after his 64 in the second round - six birdies and an eagle - which sent him into the last round six strokes ahead of Shadbolt and seven over Lima.
He had opened with 75, level with Shadbolt and one ahead of Lima, but he lost ground against both in the last round, and his chance went when he drove into water on the final hole, played three off the tee, to end with a seven and third place on 215, Shadbolt having had rounds of 75 70 68 to tie the lead.
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Matthew Wallace (Batchworth Park) finished seventh in the under-21s with rounds of 72 73 79 for 224 total.
The only Herts girl competing, former Ladies Champion Lucy Williams of Mid Herts, had rounds of 79 84 80 for 243 total to finish seventh in the girls category, won by England international Holly Clyburn on 229.
The field of 70 worldwide players were welcomed to the 13th grand final by six times major champion Nick Faldo, who watched and gave hints to the players and made the presentations. The category winners received an invite to the Faldo Asian grand final in Mission Hills, China.