Bryden Macpherson of Australia beat Scotland’s Michael Stewart by 3&2 in today’s 36-hole final of the 116th Amateur Championship at Hillside Golf Club in Southport.
20-year-old Macpherson, who has just completed his second year at the University of Georgia in the USA, became just the second Australian to win the Amateur Championship following Douglas Bachli who took the title back in 1954.
“It feel’s pretty good to bridge the gap of 57 years. I hope there are a few proud Aussies having a barbeque,” he said.
With the victory Macpherson has secured a berth in the Open Championship at Royal St George’s next month as well as an invitation to the US Masters at Augusta in April 2011.
The youngster from Melbourne lost the first hole of the 36-hole final but came back with a win at the sixth. By taking the ninth hole of the first round, Macpherson claimed the lead and he would not relinquish it, eventually closing out the win on the 34th green.
Stewart, representing Troon Welbeck, was disappointed with his performance. The 21-year-old missed some highly makeable putts and lost a number of shots right into deep rough.
“I didn’t play well today. I was dire, this morning. I don’t know what it was. I just didn’t feel comfortable over the ball,” said the Scot. “And the long game had an effect on my putting. Because I wasn’t hitting it as well as I wanted to, I felt more pressure over the putts.”
Stewart was well supported and a good proportion of the 700-strong gallery who came to watch the final had made the journey from Troon.
“I’m really grateful for that,” said Stewart.
This was the second straight year that a Scot lost out in the final of the Amateur Championship. In 2010 it was Banchory’s James Byrne.