Italy’s Guido Migliozzi held off a spirited final day challenge from England’s Jack Singh Brar to win the 13th edition of the Duke of York Young Champions Trophy at Royal St George’s Golf Club in Kent, England.
Migliozzi began the final round of the 54-strokeplay event with a four stroke lead but had to hold his nerve all the way to the 18th before sealing the narrow one stroke win in one of game’s most prestigious amateur events at under-18 level.
The Italian Boys champion shot a final round two-over 72 for a winning aggregate of 215, one ahead of Brar, who signed off with a 69 to equal the low round of the week with Vince van Veen from The Netherlands who finished seventh.
“I didn’t play my best today but the short game got me out of trouble,” said a relieved Migliozzi holding the famous trophy.
“The battle with Jack (Singh Brar) was very hard. He missed the par putt at the last but he put it up to me all day long.
“I felt some pressure on the back nine but it was ok. I’m very happy to have won this tournament, my biggest win so far,” added the champion, who traded two birdies at the first and seventh against four bogeys.
Brar knew he always faced an uphill battle to overcome Migliozzi but enjoyed the challenge nonetheless.
With three birdies in four holes from the fifth the 16-year-old rectified two early bogeys. And with another birdie at the par three 16th, it meant he and Migliozzi stood on the 18th tee level.
However, a closing bogey for Brar left Migliozzi with a three-footer for par and the win.
“It was another great tournament but I came up just short,” said Brar. “I knew it was going to be tough to par the last to force the play-off.
I managed to turn it on over the back nine and gave it a good go. I enjoyed the challenge.
“After winning the Southeast England Boys title last month, I was hoping for back-to-back wins,” added Brar, who received an invite after winning the Faldo Series.
Bradley Neil struggled to find his A-game for most of the day but by signing off with a rare birdie at the 18th, the young Scot secured third place after a final round 71 gave the 17-year-old a total of 220.
That was one ahead of American Nicole Morales, who finished as the top girl for the week and in a tie for fourth alongside Ireland’s Robin Dawson (71) and Norway’s Kristian Johannessen (71).
“That was a great way to finish the week.
I stayed patient and struck the ball very well. I gave myself a lot of opportunities for birdie and that’s all you can ask for,” said a delighted Morales, who also put on a show for the Duke of York, who was in attendance on the day.
“I even managed a birdie in front of the Duke of York on the 15th so I can’t complain about that!
It was a great tournament with a top field.
There are very few times we get the chance to compete against the boys and it’s a great opportunity for us all.”
This week the international field experienced links golf in it’s purest form as the coastal winds raced over the rolling Royal St George’s terrain on the first two days.
By way of some respite the week ended with the best conditions and the scoring reflected as much.
In the end there was only one winner and Migliozzi led from start to finish, including a hole-in one-on the second day.
Indeed, the Italian was a worthy winner.