The Bedfordshire Suits Taylor [UPDATED - GALLERY ADDED]
Jay Taylor sewed up a well-deserved win on the Jamega Pro Golf Tour with a masterful display of controlled golf on a very difficult second day when the strong gusty wind that swept over the course blew away many of the challengers hopes.
On the first day in easier scoring conditions with virtually no wind, it was Dan Garner and Jamie Moul who led the way with excellent 3 under par 67’s.
In all, some seventeen players either equalled or bettered the strict par of 70, including the eventual winner Taylor who was in the chasing pack led by Luke Fitzpatrick who carded a fine 2 under par 68.
The second day turned out to be a very different kettle of fish, with a strengthening wind developing through the morning and reaching a peak in the afternoon gusting, at times to 30 MPH and for the leaders it was going to be a trying time.
Taylor started the final round with a bogey but as so often happens good things then started to happen for him and with 3 birdies on the front nine he turned in 2 under par but still lagged behind Moul and the charging Liam Harper.
Taylor, playing 3 groups ahead of the first round leaders, then climbed aboard the “Birdie Train” and collected 4 of them in the first 5 holes of the back nine to lead the tournament on 6 under par.
Recent multiple winner Tom Speyer threatened to take the spoils with 2 birdies in the first four holes but then settled back on the “Par Train” and could make no further progress and finished on 3 under par for the tournament.
The charging Harper, who was playing alongside Speyer, saw his charge come to a halt on the back nine and in the end could only replicate his first round of one under par 69 and finish at 2 under par.
Then more drama as suddenly Taylors progress was halted with a nasty double bogey 6 on the seventeenth to fall back to 4 under par and now found himself one shot adrift of Moul, who had birdied the par 5 fourteenth.
To his credit Taylor steadied himself and finished with a par at the last and could then only sit and wait to see if 4 under par would be good enough for at least a play-off.
Moul had now reached the seventeenth but a tugged second that missed the green followed by a clumsy chip saw him card a bogey 5 and fall into a tie with Taylor at 4 under par.
Moul’s drive at the last was struck well but drifted left into the strategically placed fairway bunker and rolled into an awful position under the left hand lip, which meant he had to play the shot with one foot out of the bunker and one in it.
He could only manage to progress the ball some 30 odd yards forward and that still left him a lot to do in order to get up and down for par and a play-off with Taylor.
His approach was again slightly pulled and finished long and left of the last green and meant he now had to hole his chip shop to force a play-off.
Another poor chip and 2 putts later saw the unfortunate Moul slip into a tie for second place with Tom Speyer on 3 under par but a delighted Jay Taylor was over the moon to have won on the Jamega Tour again after some nine years.
We love coming to the Bedfordshire who always put on a good show for us and even the weather was good this time for a change.
Everyone in the clubhouse is helpful and nothing is too much trouble for any of them especially Abby, who looked after us very well indeed.