Italy's rising starlet shines


The Open Championship In Association With Nikon

Teenage Italian Matteo Manassero had the time of his young golfing life playing alongside veteran Tom Watson and his idol Sergio Garcia.

At sweet 16, Manassero - he automatically qualified after capturing the British Amateur crown - is the youngest Open competitor but was he overawed by being paired with the oldest, the living legend that is Tom Watson, and the Spanish superstar? No way.

The young Italian more than held his own, shooting a highly creditable 71 (+1). "It was a great experience. I played with two really great guys.

"I settled down well and I played pretty well. I was a bit nervous but it was positive nervous."

He can't wait to do it all over again tomorow, saying: "I play with Tom and Sergio again and it should be great."

Manassero has his eyes firmly fixed on making the cut and claiming the amateur's prize - the Silver Medal.