The Amateur Championship: It’s an England v Denmark final! – Golf News

England’s Dominic Clemons and Jacob Skov Olesen of Denmark will meet in the Final of The 129th Amateur Championship at Ballyliffin.

On a challenging, sodden day on the northwest tip of Ireland, Clemons and Olesen battled their opponents, the weather and the rigorous test posed by the Glashedy Links to set-up a 36-hole showdown for one of the amateur game’s most cherished prizes.

Clemons, who came close to defeat on the final green of his quarter-final match in the morning, booked his place in the last-two with a spirited one-hole victory over fellow Englishman, Jack Bigham.

Olesen, who is making his debut in The Amateur Championship, was a 3&1 winner against Luke Sample of the United States of America and became the first Danish player to reach the final.

The pair will now square-up for one of the most prestigious trophies in amateur golf with the winner also securing exemptions into The 152nd Open at Royal Troon in July, next year’s US Open, and, by tradition, an invitation to play in the Masters Tournament in 2025.

Clemons, who won the Scottish Open Amateur Strokeplay Championship by 17 shots at Muirfield earlier this month, showed patience, poise and resilience in a nip-and-tuck joust with Walker Cup player Bigham to maintain his push for another significant title.

With nothing to separate the sparring duo, a key moment arrived on the 15TH hole when Bigham’s third shot clattered the flag and bounced some 20-feet away from the hole. The former R&A Boys’ Amateur champion missed his par putt and Clemons inched ahead.
He was still one-up playing the last and cliched the victory when Bigham’s birdie putt to keep his hopes alive lipped out.

Olesen, a student at the University of Arkansas, revelled in the links test and staved off the gallant challenge of fellow championship debutant Sample. The 25-year-old had holed a couple of terrific putts around the turn, but Sample continued to put up a spirited resistance. A wild tee-shot on 15, however, saw the New Yorker slip one hole behind and Olesen pressed home his advantage with a birdie on 16. With Sample toiling in the bunkers up the 17th, Olesen wrapped up the match in style with a fine approach which kissed the flag.

In the morning’s quarter-finals, Olesen claimed the notable scalp of Scotland’s Walker Cup player Calum Scott on the final green. The Dane had been two-down with just four to play but Scott stumbled to a trio of bogeys at 15, 16 and 17 as the match turned on its head in the last knockings.

Clemons, meanwhile, edged through at the 20th hole against Germany’s Laurenz Schiergen. In a fascinating match of fluctuating fortunes, Clemons, who had been two-up after a brace of birdies at the first and second, found himself on the back-foot late on when he missed a short putt on 16 to fall behind for the first time.

Schiergen, aiming to become only the second German to reach the Final, had a chance to win it on 17 but missed from eight feet. Schiergen then had a three-footer on 18 to seal a last four-berth, but his putt lipped out. Clemson was handed an unlikely reprieve and went on to win at the second extra-hole.

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