Seve's Challenge,tamed!

James Jankowski's first Jamega win has been accomplished at one of this years most demanding courses, in rather blustery conditions. The Shire London, set out by the great Severiano Ballesteros was this weeks Jamega test for our tournament playing professionals with a prizefund kindly boosted by Jemca Toyota. James played with confidence and flair and was only really challenged in the latter stages by South Winchester winner Lyle Rowe who finished 7 under forcing James to par the difficult 18th to take the Winners Flag.

Report below.

The Fat Lady finally sings for James Jankowski at The Shire.

James Jankowski finally breasted the tape after a drama packed last three holes to win his first Jamega Pro Golf Tour event at The Shire London by one shot from the South African, Lyle Rowe.
The Seve Ballesteros designed course which consists of 6 par 3’s, 6 par 4’s and 6 par 5’s proved to be a stern test in a strong North Easterly wind on the first day with only eight players bettering the par of 72. James Jankowski headed the list compiling an excellent 5 under par 67 to lead by two from Jordan Smith and David James. Well positioned on his own on 3 under Stewart Mitchell was ready to make a move on day two. Lee Drew, James Ablett, Danny O’reilly and Nick Redfern led the chasing pack on 2 under par and were keen for the start of the second day to try and set a tough target for the leaders to catch.
The forecasted heavy rain for the second day fortunately failed to materialise and we were greeted with an ideal day for scoring. Early drama came in the form of Jordan Smith, who was due to tee off in the leading group on 4 under, having to withdraw with a back problem. South African, Lyle Rowe set the cat amongst the Pidgeons early on by adding a blemish free, seven birdie 65 to his fairly pedestrian level par effort on day one and waited for the leaders to finish to see if his final total of 137 could be the winning score!
The final group, without the unfortunate Jordan Smith, was looking like becoming a procession for James Jankowski, as  David James was struggling, seemingly unable to prevent bogeys from infecting his card. Jankowski, on the other hand, was enjoying a birdie fest which culminated with a fantastic Eagle on the 13th to move him on to eleven under par and a four shot lead over clubhouse leader Lyle Rowe.
“Don’t start writing your winners speech until the fat lady sings”. Very relevant advice which Jankowski forgot and by  his own admission thought he could “Showboat” in, with a 4 shot lead and enjoy getting his revenge over playing partner David James who beat him in a play-off at The Players Club earlier in the year. He had a gentle reminder on the 16th that the fat lady was just warming up,  dropping a shot to now lead by just three.
Meanwhile Lyle Rowe was relaxing in the clubhouse enjoying an unexpected visit from his brother who had flown in from South Africa, continued to hope for a play-off, at least. With the adrenalin pumping through Jankowski’s veins his second shot flew the 17th green, pitched on a down slope and started swimming in the water hazard which actually surrounds the first hole some 20 yards away. With his lead now just one shot, Jankowski knew that he must par the last to win. A tee shot up the right side of the 18th fairway was nudged into the middle, by fate maybe, and ended in perfect position to hit the green from around 130 yards. A solid wedge, followed by a huge sigh of relief saw his ball hit the water surrounded green coming  to rest about 25 feet from the cup. A near perfect first putt stopping just 6 inches from the sanctuary of the hole.  A now relieved Jankowski tapped in to triumph and savour his first win  and his winners cheque for £3,000 plus an additional £300 from the event sponsor Jemca Toyota. Second place Lyle Rowe, receiving a cheque for £2,000 plus an extra £200 from Jemca to take back home to South Africa.
Our thanks to Jemca Toyota for sponsoring the tournament and enhancing the prize fund by £500.
The welcome we received from everyone at The Shire was fantastic with a great course designed by Severiano Ballesteros, the most charismatic golfer the world has ever seen, it is a must for our calendar and highly recommended for all golfers of all standards.
We are at The Warwickshire next week playing The Kings course which is always popular so enter early to secure your place

Richard Wallis,another playoff!

Richard Wallis, Southern Area PGA Professional, after many years of trying, finally wins with Jamega.
Having been in several playoffs over the years with Jamega, Richard at last crosses the winning line by sneaking a win under the cover of darkness. A long rain delayed 2nd day finally comes to a close with 4 excellent golfers tied on 7 under par.

With fading light the playoff went  to the fifth extra hole where Richard stating that he couldn't see the hole, never mind any break, hit his final putt firm and straight to ram home his first Jamega win, leaving Steve Surry in the dark!

Report below.

Wallis finally gets over the line to win at Gatton Manor.

Rolling back the year’s former European Tour winner Mark Mouland showed a clean pair of heels to the opposition on day one with a stunning 7 under par 65 which included two Eagles, on the 5th and 13th to lead a quality field after the first round at Gatton Manor. Heading the chasing pack were last week’s winner at Selsdon Park, Lloyd Kennedy and Richard Wallis both on 5 under 67.                                                                                                                         
Challenge Tour Regulars Dan Brooks and Steve Surry along with Ben Banks and Tom Murray lay one shot behind Kennedy and Wallis on 4 under par 68. Tucked in one shot further back was another Challenge Tour player, Mark Laskey. A tightly packed leader board had some thirty three players scoring level par or better.
The Tours old friend, the rain swept in to say Hi on day two and with the wind due to pick up in the afternoon playing conditions were going to prove difficult, so patience would be a paramount ingredient of the recipe for success, so proven winner Mark Mouland would be hoping that experience would triumph over youth on this, the second day.
An early card to hit the recorders table was a superb seven under par 65 from Jonathan Paulton which was a whopping fourteen shots fewer than his first round effort of 79! Jon Le Roux took over the early lead from Paulton at 1under par adding a 4 under 68 to his first round 75. Rory Kirwan and David James then assumed the lead both scoring 4 under par 68’s to finish on 2 under par.
As the leading groups started to come in it became apparent that a tight finish was on the cards. Steve Surry logged a final round of 69 to set a challenging target of 7 under par but this was soon equalled by Dan Brooks in the penultimate group. With the final group not setting the course on fire a play-off looked on the cards. In the final three ball Lloyd Kennedy and Richard Wallis battled down the stretch trying to find a birdie but both failed and we headed for the second four way play-off of the year!

Well, what a day! 3 hours delay due extremely heavy rain, the whole field completing the final 18 holes in excellent time as  night was closing in. A 4-way playoff,  possibly our worst nightmare, failing light and 4 excellent golfers still to decide the outright winner,  maybe back tomorrow to complete!
So off to the  first, playing sudden death on holes 1,2 and 3. OOM leader Dan Brooks  the first to stumble failing to get up and down from the back of the first takes the long lonely walk back to the clubhouse. On the very next hole,  last week’s winner  Lloyd Kennedy slips his par putt by to leave the contest but stays on to watch Steve Surry and Richard Wallis battle to the end. Taking a further 3 holes to get a result with Gary Harris (The Jamega Official in charge) constantly suggesting that maybe it was too dark to continue. They manfully struggled on, in dwindling light, and when Richard heard his ball take the 6 inch drop on playoff hole 5 the tournament was done and in truth it really was too dark and Steve will rue the decision to play on, maybe a lesson learnt.
Richard at last wins a playoff, well done, £5000 richer, no wonder he’s smiling!

This was our first visit to Gatton Manor, near Gatwick on the Surrey Sussex border  and we will most certainly be back next year if possible, having received a warm welcome and been presented with a solid golf course in excellent condition. Many thanks to Patrick, The Owner and his green-keeping team led by Rob, a great job in trying conditions! Superb greens.

Week on week we have quality fields, with a strong representation of European and Challenge Tour players in the mix.
So we would say again if you want to test yourself against the best, get your entry in early for The Shire next week on the 16th and 17th where you can try and unravel the puzzle laid down by the great Seve Ballesteros.

Kennedy returns!

Lloyd Kennedy, who started his Tournament Career with Jamega as a 19 year old who's since  progressed on up the ladder, to play the Challenge Tour returns to take the Selsdon win, by 2 shots.

Report Below.

Lloyd Kennedy returns to his roots after two years to win at Selsdon Park.

 “I love Selsdon Park more than Augusta”, these are the words of winner Lloyd Kennedy who returned to play with us after a 2 year break playing The Challenge Tour to take the first prize of £5,000 from a high quality field which included current Senior Tour and the main European Tour players.
A parched and fast running Selsdon Park with a strict par of 70 presented the players with a stern test of character and ability. James Scade passed the test with flying colours carding a first round 64 to set the pace at 6 under par. Hanging onto Scade’s coat tails was European Tour regular Lee James who crafted a solid 5 under 65 to lead the chasing pack. A group of five players sat on 66 waiting to pounce including Tom Whitehouse, who was playing with us during a break from the main Tour, Francis McGuirk, Steve Surry, James Ablett and former European Tour winner Mark Mouland who is honing his game ready for a tilt at the Champions Tour in the U.S.
 The second day was sunny and with light winds and for any of the players “on their game” it was made for going low! Sam Robinson went on a birdie harvest, plucking seven of them from the course, to pack into a blemish free card of 63 which propelled Robinson into the prize fund after a lack-lustre first round 72.
On the course it had all the hallmarks of a play-off with the leaders bunched up on around 6 under par. Dan Brooks broke the deadlock and jumped into the lead with a run of four birdies in five holes from the eleventh to elevate him to 8 under. As Brooks birdied the Eleventh, Kennedy, was rueing a bogey on the same hole which dropped him back into the pack on 5 under. A little annoyed, to say the least, Kennedy then reeled off 5 birdies on the spin to spread-eagle the field and set a formidable target of 10 under par 130. Brooks parred in to end on 8 under and finish second with James Ablett, who carded his second 66 of the tournament, each of them winning £2000. Surry’s challenge failed to materialise and he bogied the last two to finish in third place on 7 under par and win £1,000.
Just a mention for Carl Watts, a Challenge Tour winner from the Nineties,  who also lost in a playoff but for the European Tour, 1997 B.M.W Open despite scoring 24 under par! After a decade out of tournament golf, Carl dusted off his old Persimmons and shot a very creditable total of 140 to finish tied 27th on level par.
Selsdon Park is a traditional type of golf course set in spectacular surroundings and offers a fair challenge to golfers of all standards.
We are anticipating a strong and large field for Gatton Manor next week so if you want to play against the best, enter as soon as possible or risk missing out.