Champion of Champions final

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A stunning one-over-par total after two rounds of Turnberry’s Ailsa Course saw Northumbria’s Sandy Twynholm crowned the 2008 HSBC Golf World Champion of Champions.

Sandy – the 2007 club champion at Morpeth GC – shot 69-70 in some awful conditions at next year’s Open venue, to win by five from Mark Wharton.

The 43-year-old, who won a Waterford Crystal trophy, a limited-edition Scotty Cameron putter and an invite back next year to defend his title, said: “It was very tough out there, so I am very pleased with the way I played. It’s the first thing I’ve won all year!”

Sandy is no stranger to success though – he is the amateur course record holder at Muirfield, after shooting 67 there off the Open Championship tees in 2005.

He added: “My daugher Tara, who is now 12 weeks old, was due shortly after my Champion of Champions qualifier at The Roxburghe. I was up there wondering whether she was going to be a few days early, which meant I would have gone straight home. If that had happened, I’d have never got to Turnberry.”

Sandy’s friend and fellow Champion of Champions qualifier Russell Hahoe gave an insight into the winner’s game, saying: “He’s so straight he can put a 3-wood inside your 8-iron!”

Conditions were so bad for the Grand Final that the Ailsa Course was closed for several hours on the first day after a deluge turned some of the greens into lakes.

Turnberry’s green staff did an incredible job to get the course playable again, and when they went back out, all the competitors had to deal with were frequent showers and a 40mph wind...

Golf World Editor Chris Jones added: “Given the conditions, Sandy’s two rounds were phenomenal. He thoroughly deserves the title after playing like that.”

Planning for next year’s competition is already well underway, so if you’re a reigning club champion, or you know who is, look out for a full list of 2009 qualifying events in a couple of months.

FINAL RESULTS

1 Sandy Twynholm Morpeth GC 69-70 139

2 Mark Wharton John O’Gaunt GC 71-73 144

3 Miguel Moitas Redbourn GC 71-73 144

4 Mar Young  Longbridge GC 70-74 144

5 Neil Harker-Bell South Moor GC 74-71 145

6 Steven Armstrong Turnhouse GC 73-72 145

7 Jack Winer  Woolston Mannor GC 72-73 145

8 Josh Loughrey Woodbridge Park GC 69-77 146

9 Lawrence Allen Brooksman Park GC 77-70 147

10 Thomas Ogan Braintree GC 74-73 147

11 Peter Tomlinson Aldersley Green GC 78-70 148

12 David Hayes Coventry GC 71-77 148

13 Matt Harrison Burghill Valley GC 78-71 149

14 James Frazer Pennard GC 77-72 149

15 Michael O’Connor Hillingdon GC 76-73 149

16 Paul Layland Machynys Peninsula GC 75-74 149

17 Robert Sallis Notts GC 74-75 149

18 Ian Davie  Hazel Grove GC 79-71 150

19 Ashley Mansell Clevedon GC 76-74 150

20 Michael Henson Bedale GC 73-77 150

21 David Vest  Wearside GC 77-74 151

22 Gareth Jones Builth Wells GC 74-77 151

23 Russell Hayhoe Ponteland GC 76-76 152

24 Adam Dalby Birstall GC 76-76 152

25 Spencer Wells Garon Park GC 76-76 152

26 David Jessup Rochester & Cobham GC 71-82 153

27 Ian Hardman Accrington GC 79-75 154

28 David Reilly Westmanstown GC 72-82 154

29 Brandon Bailey Matfen Hall GC 78-77 155

30 Tim Brind  Abbey Dale GC 82-74 156

31 Ben Collins Chart Hills GC 81-75 156

32 Jason Hampton Stover GC 80-76 156

33 Alex Kippen Enmore Park GC 76-80 156

34 Nigel Harrington Worthin GC 74-82 156

35 Tommy Wilson Glenbervie GC 79-78 157

36 Wayne Hawes Littlehampton GC 77-80 157

37 John Coey  Clandeboye GC 77-80 157

38 Ben Newsome East Sussex National GC 76-81 157

39 Sean Heads Hexham GC 78-80 158

40 Jack Bateman Weybrook Park GC 76-82 158

41 Adam Butler Pavenham GC 84-75 159

42 Andrew Richardson Woodham GC 86-74 160

43 Andy Hodge Earlferry Thistle GC 83-77 160

44 James Robinson Hornsea GC 79-82 161

45 Howard Florence I.N.C.O. GC 76-85 161

46 Gary Catt  Richmond GC 82-80 162

47 Craig Mellon Saline GC 87-76 163

48 Aaron Howard Gleneagles Glenearn GC 86-80 166

49 Gary Simpson Royal Portrush GC 86-83 169

50 Anthony Andrew Ashby Decoy GC 85-85 170

51 Martyn Gibson Waterhall GC 83-88 171

52 Jonathon Rees Ridgeway GC 94-81 175

53 Kevin Blyth  Kirkcaldy GC DQ DNS DQ

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