Amateur champ Long wins Performance of the Year award

Joe Long says he’s honoured to have won the Performance of the Year category at the England Golf Awards 2021.

The 24-year-old from Gloucestershire claimed victory in the 2020 Amateur Championship staged by The R&A and this earned him the nod from the judging panel.

There were four strong candidates for the award this year – Annabell Fuller from Surrey and Yorkshire duo Ben Schmidt and Charlotte Heath were the other worthy finalists in this category.

However, Long’s win over another England men’s squad player and fellow Bristolian Joe Harvey in the 36-hole final at Royal Birkdale made him a deserving winner.

Long is currently in the United States preparing for his debut in the US Open, but accepted his award via a trans-Atlantic video message.

“I’d just like to say a massive thank you to England Golf for me winning this prestigious award – I really feel honoured to receive it,” admitted Long.

“I’m preparing for the Memorial tournament and US Open and look forward to putting in a great performance while flying the England Golf banner high.”

Long is enjoying a dream year – helped by the spin-off invites following victory in that Amateur Championship last August.

In April, Long made his debut in the Masters at Augusta and shot a level par second round of 72 in the company of former champion Bernhard Langer.

Later this month he tees it up at Torrey Pines in the US Open and returns to England in July to play in the 149th Open at Royal St George’s.

Long was also part of the Great Britain and Ireland squad which narrowly lost the Walker Cup to the USA last month at Seminole Golf Club in Florida.

“I really appreciate all the support from England Golf,” added Long.

“I don’t believe all these opportunities would be possible without them.”