4 Surrey Juniors are looking to repeat the heroics of European Ryder Cup stars Justin Rose and Matthew Fitzpatrick next week after qualifying for the final of the 2017 Telegraph Vitality Junior Golf Championship at Portugal’s prestigious Quinta do Lago resort.
Alfie Fox and Enrique Dimayuga will be looking to take the title from reigning champion Harry Goddard, 17, from Waltham Cross, Hertfordshire, who posted an incredible course record on Quinta do Lago’s North Course last year as he recorded nine birdies on his way to an opening round 66, eventually winning by nine strokes.
Fox, 17, whose home club is Roehampton, booked his place in the elite line-up after qualifying at the Sir Henry Cooper Junior Masters with a five-under-par 68.
The Surrey Under-18 captain, who is back at Quinta do Lago for a second year, is from good sporting stock as his grandfather Geoff Ward played tennis at Wimbledon 13 years in a row from 1949 to 1961.
England squad member Dimayuga, a one handicapper, whose home club is Walton Heath, booked his place in the elite line-up after his heroics in the Carris Trophy at West Sussex Golf Club back in July when he scored four-under par 64 – a day off his 16th birthday. It followed his fifth-place finish the week before in the McGregor Trophy, the English Under-16s Boys’ Open. Enrique is from a dynasty of golfers as the England boys’ squad member is the eldest of three brothers representing Surrey.
Annabell Fuller and Martha Lewis will be looking to take the title from reigning girl’s champion Hannah Screen, 17, from Berkhamsted, who clinched the title last year after recording a two-shot victory last year.
Fuller, whose home club is Roehampton, booked her place in the elite line-up after a superb 68 (five-under par and seven inside the CSS of 75) in the first round of the English Girls’ Open Amateur Championship at Littlestone in Kent. Her round included four birdies and an eagle two at the par-four eighth and helped her to earn fourth place. The 15-year-old, who first picked up a club at the age of three, plays off three, hopes to go one better in the Algarve than her elder sister, Sammy, a runner-up in the Algarve event in 2013.
Lewis, a one handicapper and a member of the England Golf Girl’s squad whose home club is St George’s Hill in Surrey, qualified courtesy of her sponsor. The teen also qualified last year for the finals at Quinta do Lago. She has seen her world ranking boosted with an overall win in the combined Critchley and Astor Salvers, finishing with a six-under par total for the two events and winning by two shots. Lewis, who has won a scholarship to the University of Washington next year, also finished fourth in the Scottish Under-18s Girl’s Championship and runner-up in the Doral Publix tournament in Florida.
Now in its 33rd year, the 54-hole stroke play Telegraph Vitality Junior Golf Championship, which was hailed by 2014 European Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley as one of junior golf’s Majors, is to take place on Quinta do Lago’s redesigned North Course. Officially opened by McGinley in October 2014, the 6,156m-layout, one of three championship courses at the resort, has quickly risen to become one of the new stars of European golf.
The North Course played a key role in Quinta do Lago being named Portugal’s best golf resort in Golf World’s inaugural rankings of the Top 100 Resorts in Continental Europe 2016/17. A multi-million-pound investment has led to a number of high-profile additions, strengthening the Algarve destination’s reputation as the world’s leading sport and leisure destination – both on land and on water. The Campus, a state-of-the-art sporting facility, is the latest inclusion that aims to provide the perfect training base for both beginners and world-class athletes in all fields. Phase One has now been completed that includes the Pavilion, which is the social heart of the facility, tennis courts, padel courts and the Bike Shed for cycling enthusiasts, who can make the most of the all-year round temperate climate.
Quinta do Lago, home to 10 highly-acclaimed restaurants and celebrating its 45th anniversary, has long been famed for its culinary delights. The Bovino is one of the best-loved dining experiences in the Algarve, complementing the sophisticated setting of Casa Velha and the hugely popular Shack, one of the coolest spots around, which is situated on the lake’s shoreline.
Located just 15 minutes from Faro airport, the resort is the official winter training base for England Golf’s elite squads and situated in the tranquil and naturally beautiful setting of the Ria Formosa Natural Park, offering a choice of high-quality accommodation options. The recent acquisition of The Magnolia Hotel adds to the already impressive array of luxury villas that are available for rental or purchase.
For more details about the 2017 Telegraph Vitality Junior Golf Championship, call 0344 693 1885 or go to http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sponsored/sport/juniorgolf/