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Lowe and Gane duel for Kingswood crown

Michael Lowe shares his third win on the trot with current PGA Surrey Open champion Chris Gane

Leatherhead-based Michael Lowe’s victory roll continued at the Kingswood Charity Pro-Am, shooting a four-under-par 68* to match the impressive card of Chris Gane (LefthandedGolf@Silvermere). A very impressive £20,000 was also raised for charity on the day itself, adding to the lustre and profile of the event.

Taking home cheques for £875 each, Gane and Lowe left the chasing pack of Peter Appleyard (Redlibbets), Scott Stevens (Staplehurst), Rob Gowers (Alresford) and Tom Fleming (Newbury & Crookham) three shots behind, after they all carded one-under-par 71s for £500 each. Stevens matched the winners’ with five birdies, but the challenging Kingswood course caught him out with four bogeys.

Gane has some form at Kingswood, winning the PGA Surrey Open here last year by six shots. After a string of top ten placings in the last few events, he was very satisfied with his first win of the 2015 season. “I’ve been close to winning a few times this year,” he said, “but there has usually been some phenomenal scoring that’s edged me out of pole position - until today!”

A winner at the recent Betchworth Park and West Hill Pro-Ams, Lowe was not expecting to make three wins in a row within 10 days, but following the news that his back injury had completely healed, Lowe’s delight was clear, “I’m back playing some of my best golf and after all the time out with that injury, it feels great to be at the top of my game. Kingswood was in terrific condition and with a game plan in mind, I made the most of the opportunities when they presented themselves.”

Both Gane and Lowe dropped just the one shot, and made five birdies each on their way to carding their 68s. Starting at the first, Gane was two-under-par at the turn, but slipped up at the long par three 10th. He repaired the damage immediately with two birdies in succession at the 11th and 12th and then made a terrific birdie at the 16th despite a blind second shot.

Starting at the 18th, Lowe was right behind Gane and could get a pretty good idea of what his nearest rival was doing just ahead. A birdie at the first was offset by a bogey at the fourth, but a great deuce at the short seventh and another birdie at the par five ninth put him on two-under at the turn.

Two more birdies at the par fives 11th and 14th in a fault-free run of pars on the back nine left Lowe in a yet another tie, albeit this time with Gane, but his third victory in succession still tasted very sweet.

Kingswood is once again the venue for the next Virgin Atlantic PGA South Order of Merit event, the PGA Surrey Open Championship and after sharing victory with Lowe in the Kingswood Charity Pro-Am, all eyes will be on Gane to see if he can defend his title around a course he obviously likes.

Images courtesy of Getty Images

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