Masters champion hails his fellow Yorkshireman after his win in national championship at Ganton
By ECG Newsdesk
You know you’ve had a good week when the reigning Masters champion tips his cap in your direction. Just ask Dan Brown. The Masham golfer received a congratulatory message from his fellow Yorkshireman Danny Willett after winning the English Amateur Championship at Ganton.
Brown, the third successive Yorkshire golfer to win the title, fought back from four-down after 26 holes of the final against his good friend, George Bloor of Derbyshire. However, he piled on the pressure with some excellent golf and was rewarded with a two-up victory.
That resulted in a string of plaudits coming his way, which included a message from 2007 English Amateur champion Willett, who won his first major at Augusta National earlier this year.
“I can remember the feelings you’re experiencing and your family and friends will rightly be very proud of you,” wrote Willett. “You’re obviously on the right track so keep doing what you’re doing, be smart and effective with your practice and who knows how far you can go?”
The 36-hole final was an enthralling affair, played out in front of a very large crowd of spectators. In the opening round, the lead changed hands repeatedly as the pair traded birdies, an eagle and even a few ragged shots, but Bloor of Cavendish came in for lunch one-up.
He pushed on in the afternoon, winning the second with a par, the third with a birdie and then stringing a series of pars together to get to four-up after eight.
Brown won his first hole of the afternoon session on the ninth, where he fired a great second straight at the pin. He pulled back another on the 11th but lost the 12th to a par after his second shot was bunkered.
It was then that Brown moved up a gear. He had winning birdies on the long 13th, with a neat up-and-down from beside the green, and on the 14th, where his tee shot almost reached the putting surface. On the 16th, he clawed it back to all-square after Bloor found all kinds of trouble.
Wayward drives from Bloor on both 17 and 18 then helped Brown to move ahead and claim his victory.
“It was crazy going four-down and I knew I had to play some good golf to apply the pressure,” said Brown afterwards. “I did what I needed to do.
“I knew anything was possible but George played such good golf that I had to hit some really good golf shots coming down those final few holes.
“This means such a lot. I won the Yorkshire amateur four years ago and this is a similar feeling but on a much bigger stage.”
The 21-year-old has been convinced all season that he had a big win in him and he was determined to give his all in this event. “I’ve been playing really well but haven’t had the results I felt I deserved. Mum and dad and my coach are sick of hearing me say that there’s a big result coming but it’s happened!”
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