Gough claims Men’s Amateur title

Conor Gough produced a sparkling performance to win the English Men’s Amateur Championship at Hankley Common in Surrey.

The 16-year-old from Stoke Park beat 20-year-old Callum Farr from Northamptonshire County 3&2 in the final to add to the McGregor Trophy and the British Boys’ titles he won last year.

Gough spent much of the early part of the season studying for his GCSEs but clearly the enforced break has had no detrimental effect on his golf.

He began the morning round of the final by hitting a 350-yard drive down the first and then holing out from 12-feet for a birdie and seven holes later he was three up after a birdie on the 6th and an eagle on the 8th.

20-year-old Farr claimed his first hole of the day when he birdied from just off the front of the green at the 10th but he could never quite reel in his opponent and he was four down heading into lunch before he won the 18th with a par.

Farr started the second round strongly by winning the first with a birdie and the second with a par but he found himself three down again after dropping shots at both the 4th and the 5th. Thereafter the pair were to share eight birdies between them before Gough sealed victory with a testing four-foot downhill putt for a par on the short 16th.

“It feels great to win,” said Gough moments after holing the winning putt. “I played really well. I love match play and as soon as I got through the stroke play qualifier I knew I had a good chance.

“I’m proud of myself. I’ve got a couple of big weeks coming up so I hope I can keep things going.

“I’ve got the Boys’ Home Internationals next week and then the US Amateur Championship at Pinehurst. I’m really looking forward to that. It’s the same format as this so hopefully I can put in another good performance.”

It was impossible not to feel for England “A” squad member Farr who has now reached the last four and the last two in the past two years without tasting success.

“I hit the ball better this afternoon but just couldn’t get the putts to drop,” he said. “I’m disappointed but Conor is a very good player and he deserved to win because he played a lot better than me.

“I got to the semi-final last year and now the final so maybe next year will be my year,” he added.

Photo: Credit Leaderboard Photography.