Callum Shinkwin (Moor Park, Hertfordshire) boosted his chance of a call-up for next month’s international with France with an impressive victory in the Hampshire Hog at a showery and chilly North Hants yesterday.
Two rounds of two-under-par 68 earned the 18 year old a three-stroke winning margin over Martin Young (Brokenhurst Manor, Hampshire, IoW & CI) and Jerome Titlow (Knole Park, Kent).
Watched by England selectors, Shinkwin, who opted to miss the previous day’s Selborne Salver – won by England boys’ squad member Matt Fitzpatrick (Hallamshire, Yorkshire) – said: “This win sets up a lot of opportunities for me. My aim is next year’s Walker Cup so hopefully a full England place is a possibility.”
On the eve of jetting out to Spain for a week’s coaching with the rest of the England ‘A’ squad, Shinkwin found himself three strokes off the halfway lead, held by Jack Bartlett (Worthing, Sussex), after his opening 68.
But as the weather deteriorated in the afternoon with showers moving in so the scores increased, apart from Shinkwin’s.
His second 68, the only sub-par return of the round, left him out of touch for the rest of the field as he signed for four birdies and two bogeys.
“I didn’t find the conditions more difficult after lunch,” he added. “The only problem was continually putting on and removing waterproofs.
“But I’ve been playing solid all year. This is a superb course but I didn’t hole many putts today but I hit a lot of greens.
“It’s great to win this title and to have my name up there with so many famous winners such as Michael Bonallack, Peter McEvoy, Gary Wolstenholme and Justin Rose.”
While Shinkwin kept his form in the afternoon, the early leaders lost ground. Bartlett followed up his 65 with 75, while Matt Wallace (Moor Park, Hertfordshire) and Gavin Samuels (Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire) added 74s to their opening 66s, all three finishing equal fourth.
But Bartlett, winner of the Berkhamsted Trophy three weeks earlier, had to consolation of lifting the Hampshire Salver for the best aggregate over the Selborne Salver and the Hog.
He finished tied on 278 with Fitzpatrick but won on countback for his 140 at the Hog against Fitzpatrick’s 145.
However, the Yorkshire teenager began the weekend by winning the Selborne Salver at Blackmoor with a 36-hole tally of 133 after a superb opening 63. He finished a shot ahead of ‘A’ squad member Jonathan Bell (Royal Blackheath, Kent) and Paul Howard (Southport & Ainsdale, Lancashire).
Leading final scores
133 M Fitzpatrick (Hallamshire) 63 70
134 J Bell (Royal Blackheath) 67 67, P Howard (Southport & Ainsdale) 66 68
136 P Tarver Jones (Worthing) 64 72
136 C Shinkwin (Moor Park) 68 68
139 M Young (Brokenhurst Manor) 68 71, J Titlow (Knole Park) 68 71
140 M Wallace (Moor Park) 66 74, G Samuels (Leighton Buzzard) 68 72, J Bartlett (Worthing) 65 75
278 J Bartlett (Worthing) 138, 140; M Fitzpatrick (Hallamshire) 133 145
(Bartlett won on countback)