McClean cruises into last-16 of Western Amateur

Ronan MacNamara

Matthew McClean (Photo by Octavio Passos/Getty Images)

Matthew McClean made light work of one of the hardest cuts in amateur golf as he eased into the last-16 of the 121st Western Amateur Championship.

McClean shared third place on twelve-under-par after 72 holes of strokeplay qualifying and was never outside the top-10.

The Malone man carded a blistering third round of 64 to leap into third place and a steady effort of 71 on Thursday afternoon saw him remain there as Brendan Valdes of Orlando took the medalist honours on -15.


Teeing off inside the top-6 after 36 holes, McClean returned on Thursday morning knowing two good rounds would cement his place in the match play stages.

He all but secured his place as he carded eight birdies and one bogey in his third round including four birdies in five holes.

The Belfast based optometrist cut out the mistakes in his fourth round carding a birdie on 12 and a bogey on 17 as he made it into the knockout rounds at a canter.

This will serve as good preparation for McClean who is in action alongside Hugh Foley and Mark Power at next week’s US Amateur Championship but he surely has designs on winning the Western this weekend and etching his name on the trophy alongside Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Jack Nicklaus and Ben Crenshaw.


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