Golf: Super Stokes on form in Lisbon
CHANNEL Islands champion Jason Stokes registered the best result of his fledgling career by finishing joint 13th in the Portuguese International Amateur Championship on Saturday.
The 20-year-old, who has been in the Algarve for the past six weeks practising and taking part in mini pro events, carded a five-under-par four-round total of 283.
I got the second-last spot for a World Amateur Golf ranking which means I can now play in some of the bigger events
Stokes opened with a two-over-par 74 at the Montado Golf Resort, in Lisbon, before following up with sub-par rounds of 70, 71 and 68.
Stokes said: ‘It’s without doubt my best-ever result and I got the second-last spot for a World Amateur Golf ranking which means I can now play in some of the bigger events.
‘On the first day I had the last tee time out at 1 o’clock and unfortunately the wind picked up during the afternoon so it was quite tough.
‘It was not my best golf but I managed to get it round. I had an eagle and two birdies, I hit the ball well but I did not hole as many putts as I would have liked.
‘The final three rounds were good, I sank a lot more putts and on my final round [a four-under-par 68] I three-putted the 17th which cost me 11th place overall.’
Stokes, who last May became only the third La Moye golfer to win the Jersey Amateur Championship title in consecutive seasons, competed against quality opposition.
Stokes said: ‘It was a really good field, not as strong as the British Amateur but leading golfers from all over Europe.
‘It’s pleasing to get a good result and while I’ve been here [in the Algarve] I’ve worked hard on my game.
‘I’ve also had a couple of top 15 placings in mini pro tour events as well [against European Tour golfers].
‘Everything here is going well, I’ve got a couple more weeks to work on my game and two more mini pro events before I return to Jersey.
‘During the summer I will look to play in as many of the top amateur events in the UK as I can.’
La Moye’ GCs Nick Steel said: ‘Jason has been in Portugal since early January to prepare for this Championship and the English Amateur season ahead.
‘As part of the preparation he has played on the Algarve Pro Tour and has done well when competing with good young professionals and some older ex-European Tour players.
‘He has a further two tournaments to play in before he returns and this result [in Lisbon] is proof that he can do well at this level.’