Students successfully battle the elements at AoC Sport Open Golf Championships

Last week a field of 70 students took to the prestigious course at Fairmont St Andrews to battle against the elements at the 2019 AoC Sport Open Golf Championships.

Students from all across the country arrived in Scotland to compete over two days at Fairmont St Andrews Torrance and Kittocks courses, with Myerscough College and Balby Carr dominating the tournament.

With a field twice the size of the entrants from the 2018 Open, the competition was fierce, as students took to the course to compete in three different events; the mixed individual nett, the boys’ gross and the overall prize of the week, the Open Championships team.

This year’s Open witnessed some great golf by those who played with some exceptional performances, especially given the challenging weather conditions faced on Day 2.

On Day 1, the players were presented with blue skies and a growing wind which made the finish more challenging, but all students rose to the occasion returning some impressive scores.

A number of students returned scores under par, with Charlie Daughtrey of Wath Comprehensive and Lewis Harrison of Balby Carr both returning 70 to lead in the boys’ gross event.

George Chamberlain, from Accrington and Rossendale College, led in the mixed nett event returning a score of 65 on Day 1. Myerscough College, continuing their form from the 2018 Open, finished Day 1 leading the team event with a score of 215 (Harry Doyle 76, Jack McPhail 72, Jake Hibbert 75), one shot ahead of Wath Comprehensive in second place.

On Day 2 the players faced very tough conditions in the bitterly cold wind and rain which dampened the day’s competition. Given the change in conditions, many players in the field failed to finish and for those who did, the challenge of the weather was reflected in the scores returned.

In what would normally be beautiful surroundings overlooking the North Sea, the rain and wind made visibility challenging and players competed against the elements to finish as well as they could.

Jack McPhail of Myerscough College continued his form from Day 1, adding a one under par 72 to his 72 on the Kittocks course for a total of 144, to take home the boys’ gross trophy.

Jake Hibbert from Myerscough College and Charlie Daughtrey of Wath Comprehensive finished second and third respectively, both finishing with a combined score of 146. Jake pipped Charlie to second place, as given the tied score the result was decided on the lowest score for the Kittocks 18-hole.

In the mixed Nett competition, James Millington of Balby Carr finished with a combined 142, returning an impressive 72 on the Torrance Course given the horrendous weather conditions to take home the claret jug.

George Ash, of Balby Carr returned a combined 146, a score achieved by three students, including Jack McPhail (Myerscough College) and Charlie Daughtrey (Wath Comprehensive). As per the rules, the result was determined by the lowest nett score for the Kittocks 18-holes, with George Ash’s 71 and Jack McPhail’s 73 enough to secure second and third place by three and one shots respectively.

Myerscough College, continuing their recent form, retained their team prize with a 13-shot victory over Balby Carr who finished on a total of 451, beating Wath Comprehensive by four shots in third place on 455.

Myerscough College’s combined score of 438 was only six shots more than their winning score at the 2018 Open, a rather impressive performance in the most challenging of conditions.

The 2019 Open witnessed another year of fantastic performances highlighting the real talent that is present within colleges in the UK. A thank you to all of the students and staff who made the journey to St Andrews for the 2019 Open and contributed towards what was a fantastic event.

A special thank you must go to all at Fairmont St Andrews for their hospitality and for providing use of their two outstanding courses for the AoC Sport Open Golf Championships.

All the results can be downloaded below.

Jack McPhail, men’s gross winner


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