The 2015 La Manga Club International Pro-Am was wrapped up in style today by PGA of Great Britain & Ireland Professional, Darren Bragg, whose three-under par 70 at La Manga Club’s South Course pushed him up the leaderboard to claim his first PGAs of Europe Sanctioned Event win.
After starting the day in second place and three shots behind the pace at the La Manga Club in southern Spain, it was up to Bragg to carve out a sub-par score to claw back shots from overnight leader, Liam Bond.
“I came into the week wanting to have fun and wanted to enjoy the time with some clients,” explained Bragg. “I’m quite a big believer in myself anyway and I felt quite comfortable with what was happening so it was a case of holing a couple of putts and riding the storm.
“I started off solid [today] as I did yesterday and had a really nice two at the long par three and just kept it going…I also knocked a couple of good putts in which gets momentum. I had a bit of fortune on the 11th, the par-four up over the water…I made a beautiful up-and-down from there which saw me home really.
“For me it’s a case of playing a few more events this year…so hopefully this will give me a bit of a kick-start.”
Gentler weather conditions in the final round freed the North London Golf Academy Professional up to make an early move at the 201-meter fifth hole with a birdie two, followed up shortly after at the ninth with another birdie to bring him back to a four-over par total through nine holes.
A single bogey at the 12th made things more difficult, but two further birdies allowed him to get to three-over. A further bogey at the par-four 16th threatened to spoil his plans but a solid birdie on the 18th hole was enough to get him back to three-over (220) for the tournament.
For Bond, who led through both the first and second rounds, it wasn’t to be as a single birdie on his front nine was not enough to cancel out three bogeys on holes one, six and seven.
Further bogeys at the 10th and 15th holes gave him a four-over par 77, a tournament total of seven-over par (224), making for a solid one-two pair of finishes in the last two PGAs of Europe Sanctioned events having won 10 days ago at the Kempinski “The Dome” Pro-Am in Turkey.
Completing the GB&I one-two-three was Nicholas Ludwell who held his own once again narrowly missing out on second place by just one shot after a final one-over par 74 gave him an overall total of 225 (+8).
In the Team Pro-Am event another GB&I member in the form of John Paul Banbury (pictured second left) led the team honours together with his amateurs, Steve Hadley (left), Scott Hansell (right), and Chris Stokes (second right). A final round 83 points (-11), added to their previous totals of 73 and 72, earned them a winning 228-point total (-12).
In tied second place were the team of Robert Bardsley (GB&I), and amateurs David Calvert, Andrew Calvert, and Michael Sadoz, along with PGA of Italy Professional, Andrea Zanini, and amateurs Orlando Grondona, Marco Villa, and Emmanuel Georgudis. 84 and 80 final round point totals respectively allowed both teams to end on 225 points (-9).