It's coming home! Welwyn Garden City's Commemoration Jug claimed by Reis Suart
- Credit: WGCGC
For the first time since the turn of the century Welwyn Garden City Golf Club's Commemoration Jug is in the hands of home player - after a superb win for Reis Suart.
Created to celebrate Nick Faldo's first Open Championship win at Muirfield in 1987, the jug has only had one previous winner in the previous 32 runnings from the Mannicott's club, Tom Piggott's success in 2000.
But Suart, the recently crowned county champion, stormed to a four-shot win after two rounds of excellent golf, fittingly one year to the day after Piggott's death.
Open to any club champion, the competition was again blessed by players from around the country, with the field of 46 including four previous champion and the holder from 2019, the last time it was played, Chesfield Down's James Crabb.
The lowest handicap index on show was Scott Wormleighton from Birstall, playing off +4.6, with 19 players holding a handicap index of scratch or better.
The morning round returned some variable scoring, with many players struggling to master the slick greens and only one round come in under par of 70, that by George Durkan from Hanbury Manor who shot 69.
That was one shot clear of Scott Armitage from John O’Gaunt and two ahead of Adam Rochester from Blackwell Grange Golf Club and Suart.
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The predicted afternoon storms passed away, with only a few light showers affecting play, but the course proved just as attritional with two hitting par and three players going under.
To the delight of the home support though, Suart hit a 68 to earn himself the Tom Lewis Salver for the lowest round of the day and, after an agonising wait while the final groups came in, the overall title.
There was more success for the host club as Dan Gibson posted an excellent second round 70 to compensate for a frustrating first round.
Luke Ryan of Ely was second overall with rounds of 74 and 69 with Armitage ended up third after an afternoon 73.
Gog Magog's George Howard was the second player to par his second round which added to a morning 74 placed him fourth while Durkan slipped to fifth in the final standings.
Sean Harsent of Panshanger hit a one-under 69 to go with his earlier 77 as he ended the competition in sixth.