Runner-up for Hill in South African Strokeplay

Ronan MacNamara

Joshua Hill (Photo by Oliver Hardt/R&A via Getty Images)

Ronan MacNamara

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Galgorm Castle’s Joshua Hill closed with a four-under 68 to finish in second place behind Frenchman Martin Couvra at the South African Amateur Strokeplay.

Hill who trailed Couvra by four shots entering the final round signed for a 72-hole total of nine-under, six shots adrift of Couvra who pulled away on the back nine.

The Mullingar Scratch Cup winner put the foot down on the front nine with a birdie on the first and then three birdies in four before the turn, although he still trailed by four shots with Couvra proving a tough nut to crack.

The Ballymena native ran out of steam on the back nine carding two birdies and two bogeys as Couvra tagged on another couple of shots to his lead with a final round of 66.

Reigning US Mid-Amateur champion Matthew McClean closed with a level-par 72 for a three-under total and a share of eighth place.

Robert Brazill of Naas shared 22nd place on three-over after a 73 while Royal Dublin’s Hugh Foley (74) and Castle’s Robert Moran (73) were two shots further back in 26th place on five-over.

A final round of 74 gave Foley’s club mate Richard Knightly a seven-over total while Peter O’Keeffe rounded off the top-40 on plus nine.

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