Garnett on Golf: Biggs completes Suffolk clean sweep
- Credit: Archant
James Biggs of Diss has made a clean sweep of all the Suffolk Golf Union silverware for 2018, writes Tony Garnett.
The 22-year-old completed the full set when he won the magnificent Faraday Trophy as Suffolk Open champion at Bungay on Sunday.
He led by a single shot from Lawrence Dodd, Chris Bartrum and Michael Gee at lunch with George Fricker and Neil Mitchell only two shots off the pace.
By the end he held off the challenge of Mitchell, the professional attached to the Ipswich Golf Centre.
Mitchell scored birdies on the 16th and 17th holes to be only a shot behind Biggs with the 18th to play. They were in the same group. It was the cool customer from Diss who stayed in front.
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Biggs started the season by winning the Suffolk Amateur Foursomes with Chris Bartrum. He won the Suffolk Amateur Championship in a play-off with Sam Debenham and then swept aside Louis Martin in the final of the Suffolk Matchplay.
His successes, which included winning the Lagonda Trophy at Gog Magog, are a reward for working hard at his game coupled with a strict fitness programme.
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It was Debenham, Suffolk Open champion in 2016, who had the best afternoon round of 67 but being two over par in the morning left him with too much to do.
The Faraday Trophy is far too valuable for the winner to take home, but Biggs also won the Easterbrook Trophy as the leading amateur.
Biggs is the first Suffolk player to win all four county trophies in the same season. In 1991 Paul Buckle of Stowmarket won the Open, the Amateur and the Matchplay.
In the sixties Suffolk amateur golf was dominated by D C Whinney who won the Suffolk amateur title four times in five years between 1965 and 1969.
He was Open champion in 1965 and 1969 but his match play wins came in 1968 and 1970.
On Sunday Debenham and Bartrum were third and fourth with Felixstowe’s Ben Sayers putting in another notable performance to finish fifth ahead of Dodd on count back.
It was good to see Monty Scowsill back on the course for the first time since recovering from glandular fever.
Bungay junior Liam Hansey, who plays off four, won the handicap prize with five-handicap Jack Butcher of Gorleston runner-up.
Holder Alfie Halil was unable to defend his title because, together with Habebul Islam and Max Adams, he is playing in the British Boys’ Championship at Royal Portrush this week.
Bungay proved to be excellent hosts with many members doing a valuable job as ball spotters. There is a long history of golf on Outney Common which started in 1889. This Suffolk Open Championship will add to their list of memorable occasions.
Suffolk Open Championship
136: J Biggs (Diss) 67 69.
137: *N Mitchell (Ipswich Golf Centre) 69 68.
138: S Debenham (Hintlesham) 71 67, C Bartrum (Diss) 68 70.
140: B Sayers (Felixstowe Ferry) 71 69, *L Dodd (Culford Academy) 68 72.
141: R Oakey (Newton Green) 71 70.
142: Jack Cardy (Hintlesham) 71 71, D Western (Gorleston) 70 72.
143: *A Hall (Halesworth) 71 72, L Hansey (Bungay) 70 73, G Fricker (Ufford Park) 69 74.
144: J Seeley (Newton Green) 73 71.
145: C Taylor (Diss) 75 70, M Gee (Bury St Edmunds) 68 77.
146: J Butcher (Gorleston) 72 74, C Duffy (Gorleston) 76 70.
147: M Scowsill (Aldeburgh) 71 76.
148: *P Westley (Hintlesham) 78 70, H Hodgson (Woodbridge) 76 72, J Maddock (Gorleston) 76 72.
149: P Cook (Rookery Park) 77 72, B Newman (Rookery Park) 76 73, S Bearman (Newton Green) 75 74, *W Farley (Rushmere) 72 77.
150: M Duszynski (Ipswich) 79 71, *Joe Cardy (Hintlesham) 76 74.
151: S Byford (Ipswich) 80 71, B Coleman (Bury St Edmunds) 78 73, B Leuty (Gorleston) 74 77.
153: L Martin (Haverhill) 78 75, R Turnbull (Stowmarket) 76 77.
154: J Tyler (Ipswich) 82 72, *R Salter (Woodbridge) 78 76, *T Cooper (Newton Green) 76 78, D Crosby (Gorleston) 75 79.
156: J Cuthbert (Thorpeness) 83 73, M Orton (Flempton) 77 79.
157: J Millard (Bury St Edmunds) 79 78. *A Lucas (Ipswich Golf Centre) 77 80
158: *K Vince (Rushmere) 78 80, P Revell (Bungay) 77 81.
159: J Ford (Southwold) 80 79.
161: O Earle (Bungay) 80 81.
163: M Closs (Diss) 82 81.
165: T Huggins (Aldeburgh) 82 83.
166: J Goulton (Ipswich) 82 84.
167: C Sadler (Flempton) 90 77.
182: C Downing (Rookery Park) 89 93.
No return: D Rudd (Thorpeness) 80 nr.