Matty Wilson brilliantly made it back-to-back victories this season in capturing the prestigious Battle Trophy at Crail Golfing Society in Fife.
Wilson posted scores of 69, 70, 68 and a closing round 73 to win by an impressive seven shots in bright but very windy last day conditions on the Craighead Links course.
The 22-year-old, born in Leeds and now living in Forres, was two shots in front at the end of Friday’s opening 36-holes, and found himself leading by three after Sunday morning’s third round.
The Moray amateur then birdied two of his opening four holes at the start of his fourth 18 holes to extend his lead and went further ahead with a birdie at short uphill par-5 eighth hole. However, the birdies dried-up for all in the field, with Wilson dropping shots at the par-3 13th, the testing par-4 14th.
However, Wilson was not alone with his nearest rivals also dropping shots in winds gusting up to 25 mph, and with not one player over the last round not managing to break 70.
Wilson was leading by nine shots with two holes to play but proceeded to bogey both the 17th and 18th, and after four rounds, and in the first Battle Trophy since 2019, he emerged a seven-shot worthy champion.
“It’s been an amazing two weeks, winning the Craigmillar Park Open and now the Battle Trophy here at Crail,” Wilson said.
“I played in the event when it was last held, three years ago, and seeing the trophy on the first tee I thought to myself how impressive it looked but to be standing here holding the trophy, I feel very happy with what I have achieved.
“I had spent a lot of time in Spain over the winter practicing, so I had a great start of the season. My original goal was to win one event but now having won the first two stroke-play events, my goals now change considerably.
“It means starts in all the big events like the Links Trophy and British Am, so I’m delighted. Also, I’d love to play for Scotland, hopefully in the Home Internationals and I’d love to play in the Walker Cup, but they’re all the future”.
And despite the toughest of the final day, Wilson spoke fondly of the Gil Hanse-designed host Craighead Links course at golf’s seventh oldest club.
“The winds today really made the conditions tough, including hitting into the wind on 17 and 18 but I just loved the golf course, especially the greens complexes”, said Wilson.
“You have to really concentrate and be mindful of where not to put it, sometimes playing away from the hole for position”.
Next up for Wilson will be the Lytham Trophy at Royal Lytham and St. Anne’s.
Eight days ago, Wilson won the opening Scottish Golf 72-hole amateur men’s event of the season with victory at the Craigmillar Park Open in Edinburgh. He went into the final 36-holes trailing by 10 shots but cut a swath through the field over the closing two rounds and win by two.
Previous winners of the stunning-looking Battle trophy include DP World Tour players George Murray, Connor Syme and Grant Forrest, and with Forrest breaking through for his maiden Tour last year at the closeby Fairmont Resort, with his stunning Hero Open success.
Jack MacDonald signed for a closing 77 to finish runner-up at one-under-par, with the Crail members Greg Wishart (73) and Andrews Davidson (77) sharing third place at level par.