Dorset’s University of Kentucky ‘Geordie’ Ben Stow pips Ryan Evans to golf’s Brabazon Trophy

CHAMPION: Ben Stow.
CHAMPION: Ben Stow.
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BEN Stow birdied the last two holes to snatch a dramatic victory at golf’s Brabazon Trophy.

The 23-year-old equalled the Seaton Carew course record with a seven-under-par 66 to steal a one-shot triumph from the record holder, Ryan Evans.

For Stow it was a stunning victory after establishing the lead early in the final round at the Tees Road links.

He briefly conceded a one-shot lead to fellow England international Ashley Chesters midway through the back nine and then to Evans after 16 holes.

Indeed, when Stow bogeyed the par-four 16th, Evans birdied it to go one shot in front on 13 under par,

But Stow produced the finish of his young life.

The 23-year-old birdied the difficult 17th to level it up with Evans doing superbly to play out of the bunker to scramble his par.

Stow then played two brilliant shots down the 18th and cooly sunk an eight footer for his second birdie in a row to card 66 and a final total of 278 (14 under).

It left Evans needing a birdie to force a play-off.

The 27-year-old, from Wellingborough in Northamptonshire, reached the green in two, but his putt finished agonisingly short to leave his England team-mate as the champion.

Evans was just one stroke back on 279 after his 67, sharing the runner-up position with his international team-mate Chesters.

Scotland’s Craig Ross was fourth on nine under par while the Celts dominated fifth spot.

Irish duo Gary Hurley and Gavin Moynihan finished on eight under alongside Scotland’s Daniel Young.

But the day belonged to Stow, a student at the University of Kentucky, with a Geordie dad, from Whickham in Gateshead.

“I played immaculate golf on the last two holes,” he said. “I couldn’t have hit six better shots.”

FINAL LEADERBOARD

1st Ben Stow Rushmore Golf Club 69 68 75 66 278 -14

2nd Ashley Chesters Hawkstone Park Golf Club 70 71 72 66 279 -13

2nd Ryan Evans Wellingborough Golf Club 71 66 75 67 279 -13

4th Craig Ross Kirkhill Golf Club 73 70 70 70 283 -9

5th Gary Hurley West Waterford Golf Club 71 72 75 66 284 -8

5th Daniel Young Craigie Hill Golf Club 70 70 73 71 284 -8

5th Gavin Moynihan The Island Golf Club 71 70 72 71 284 -8