West Countries Laurie Canter wins at The Players Club after a tense and prolonged play off against Jack Heasman but it was the young amateur prodigy Bradley Moore who stole most of the limelight this week.
Due to a very moist first day where heavy showers kept blowing through and soaking the course at The Players Club it was decided, after several unsuccessful re starts, to abandon the day and play 36 holes on the second day.
The forecast was set fair and play started at 7-45am and fingers were crossed that we would have no more rain and we could get the tournament finished and despite several “experts” saying we would not be able to complete 36 holes in one day, we did!
The young amateur Bradley Moore, who has won “The Carris Trophy” and “The British Boys Championship” this year, led after the first round with a stunning 9 under par 63 that included 7 birdies and a Hole-in-One on the par 3 tenth.
Moore led by 3 shots going into the second round of this marathon 36 hole day but with the likes of Laurie Canter (Cumberwell Park), Martin Sell (Wrag Barn) and the very experienced Paul Streeter (Lincoln Golf Centre) in the chasing pack it would be interesting to see if Moore could hold on and be the first amateur to win on the tour.
We also had several dark horses playing this week including Jack Heasman (66) and Luke Johnson (68), both former England Internationals, who had the fire power to win the tournament.
As the scores came in for the second round it became clear that low scoring was possible given the receptive greens that had near perfect surfaces thanks to the epic efforts of the greens staff at The Players.
Moore was going along nicely until he was hit with a 3 shot penalty for an inadvertent rules infringement on the sixth hole that knocked him back to 7 under par.
Showing massive resolve and fighting spirit the young man played out the remaining twelve holes in 5 under par and set a very realistic target of 12 under par.
The very talented Bath professional Laurie Canter, who is based at Cumberwell Park, with the help of his loyal bag man, James Hannam, joined Moore on 12 under par adding a 7 under par 65 to his first round 67.
Canter waited and hoped that his total would be good enough to clinch the professional prize but as luck would have it Jack Heasman, in the final group, handed in his second 66 of the day, to join Canter on 12 under par and so into a playoff they went.
Bradley Moore would not be joining the battle for the title as he had elected to leave for home but in any event, as an amateur, he could not win any of the money on offer. However he will be in receipt of some worthwhile and memorable prizes.
With the first 2 holes of the play off halved in par fours and the light failing fast it was decided that they should return in the morning to continue the battle in order to find a winner.
With everyone assembled on the par four fourteenth tee the third extra hole of the playoff began with both players hitting good tee shots and with Canter being the longer of the two it was Heasmans shot first from fluffy lie in the semi rough.
Heasman unfortunately catches a flyer and his ball ends up in the back bunker while Canter’s second shot safely finds the green, some 25 feet from the cup.
Heasman’s bunker shot leaves him a long putt to save par and from around 40 feet he fails to find the bottom of the cup so this leaves Canter 2 putts for the win and he makes no mistake by using both for par and the win.
Despite the weather on the first day we found the Players Club pulled out all the stops to help us finish the tournament and our thanks go out to all who contributed towards making the event a success, from the dedicated green keepers to the welcoming and friendly clubhouse staff.