Dominic Bradburn of Aboyne Golf Club won the finals of the coveted 2017 Titleist Footjoy Matchplay Championships in Portugal last week.
Dominic, 19, won four consecutive regional knockouts across north-east Scotland before securing his place on the Algarve by winning the Scottish regional qualifier at Irvine Golf Club in October last year.
Playing at the luxurious five-star Vale Do Lobo golfing resort near Faro, which has hosted the Portuguese Open, Dominic competed in the four-round Stableford finals against the eight other regional low-handicap qualifiers and won in convincing style by seven points.
“It was the first time I have entered the competition and it was a real surprise and honour to qualify from Scotland and represent my club and country,” said Dominic, who is in his second year at the University of Highlands & Islands (UHI) in Dornoch on the Golf Management degree course. “To then go and win the finals in Portugal against some very competent golfers was unbelievable. The setting at Vale Do Lobo was amazing and the courses were tough, requiring a lot of course management, particularly the third round played in atrocious rain and wind.
“It was very testing but that is what you would expect from a final. I managed to hold it all together and was delighted to secure the title. It is such a great feeling and I have received unbelievable support from Aboyne Golf Club and my fellow golfers here in the North East.”
David Hughes, tournament director of the European Amateur Golf Tour, said: “Now in its 22nd year, this annual tournament attracted over 1,000 entrants from across the UK with the prize to qualify for the finals in Portugal.
“Dominic played extremely well over the four rounds, consistently scoring 31, 34, 32 and 34 and amassing 131 points to take the title by seven points from his nearest rival.
“He handled the pressure very well and earned the respect of his fellow players. He has a bright future ahead of him and we hope to see him back next year to defend his title.”