Armitage closing in on Challenge Tour card

FORMER Lancashire boy champion Marcus Armitage moved a step closer to a full Challenge Tour card with his second HotelPlanner.com PGA EuroPro Tour win of the season, taking home the Tree Of Life Championship title from Close House.

MARCUS ARMITAGE

MARCUS ARMITAGE: Second victory

The 28-year-old finished the tournament 11 under par with a final-round 68, three under par. Ireland’s Brian Casey (Headford Golf Club; 68, 67, 68) went two under the card for his concluding 18 but finished second on nine under. Sebastian George Garcia Grout (Golf de Poniente Mallorca; 68, 69, 68) of Spain came third with a score of eight under.

Armitage led throughout the final round having started with a one-shot advantage. He negotiated the front nine with seven pars, a birdie at 7 and a bogey at 8 but pulled away from the field with an eagle at the 10th. He holed out on the 15th for birdie when a bogey looked likely and concluded the Tree Of Life Championship with three pars for victory.

The win is Armitage’s third on Europe’s third-tier tour and his second this season after success at Cumberwell Park. His £10,000 win sees him move up to fourth on the Race To Desert Springs, from which the top five at the end of the season progress to the Challenge Tour

“I feel great,” said Armitage, who also takes home a brand new Motocaddy trolley, Bushnell Tour X Range Finder, Bolle sunglasses and £500 to spend at HotelPlanner.com.

“I have played very solidly this week and have trusted myself to get the job done. I hit 15 greens and only had to chip on two holes, which is key around here.

“I thought  the 5-wood on the 10th might have been a bit soft and a bit short but we got up there and it was a five-foot putt so I was really pleased. The 15th was massive; I missed it in a real bad spot there and it needed something special.

“It is massive to be in that top five because you are always looking to move up. I am looking for another win now to secure it because now I want to win the Order of Merit.

“Moor Allerton is close to my house and the extra day could suit me. It is great to be going there off a win. It is a good track where I have played a lot of golf so I am really looking forward to it.”

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