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Russell leaves West Surrey with a Win

Hassocks man’s game plan is getting him into the winning gear

Russell Buxton (Hassocks) has notched up his second win of the season, shooting 68 to win the West Surrey Pro-Am, with the Surrey club laying on a fantastic day’s golf and hospitality for the 41 assembled Pro-Am teams.

Buxton’s three-under-par performance as he negotiated the tree lined course and testing pin positions wasn’t without the occasional slip, but his seven birdies easily outshone the four bogeys as he edged out the 69s of James Jones (Tonbridge Golf Centre) and Nick Redfern (AIA Group) to claim the £1,000 top prize.

Buxton reflected, ““Thanks to the team at Golf Data Lab, two crucial weaknesses were identified which I’ve been working on: hitting more greens with my mid and short irons. It’s helped me to focus on my game plan when I’m out on the course.”

Buxton continued, “After leading the qualifying at Kingswood and a third place at Haywards Heath, winning here has really helped to reinforce all the work I’ve been doing with my coaches and mentors: Ben Clayton at Hindhead on the short game, Stuart Dowsett at Sundridge Park on my long game, and Jim Roberson on the mental and emotional game.” He added, “I’m learning to stick to the things they’re all advising me to do, especially to stay cool when things don’t go to plan!”

Buxton got off to a good start when he deuced the second, and was unfazed by bogeys at the fourth and fifth when his second shots missed the greens on the wrong side. He immediately began to repair the damage with a birdie at the sixth, and two more at the eighth and ninth got him to the turn in two-under-par.

A bogey at the 10th after three putting to a tricky hole position might have tested Buxton a while ago, but he stayed calm and was rewarded with a birdie at the 13th. A dropped shot on the 14th was followed by another birdie on the 15th, and with pars at the next two holes, Buxton then birdied the final hole to snatch a well deserved win.

He commented, “Sticking to my game plan and staying cool are the key, and these results are helping me to believe in myself and my ability to make the key shots when it matters. I made the cut in the first Virgin Atlantic PGA South Order of Merit at Frilford Heath, and I’m looking forward to the next at East Sussex National.

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