Grehan secures a top 10 finish as Fitzpatrick secures maiden win at St.Mellion

Rian Noctor

Alex Fitzpatrick (Image: Getty Images)

Stuart Grehan was the leading Irishman as Alex Fitzpatrick claimed his maiden challenge tour victory at the British Challenge at St. Mellion.

Grehan bounced back from a poor 3rd round to card a 2 under 70 and secure a top 10 finish.

Alex Fitzpatrick, who finished tied 17th at The 151st Open at Royal Liverpool Golf Club two weeks ago, registered a four under par round of 68 to go with rounds of 72-66-70 and reach 12-under par for the week and win by five shots ahead of Welshman Stuart Manley.


The 24-year-old carded just four bogeys all week in testing conditions in Cornwall, and catapulted up to seventh place on the Road to Mallorca Rankings to close in on promotion to the DP World Tour.

Fitzpatrick said he was delighted to finally see his hard work vindicated with a win on home soil.

“I’m ecstatic,” he said. “I feel like I’ve been playing some decent golf and I’ve been putting in a lot of work. It’s just nice to see it finally pay off.

“Sunday is always tough. You know people are going to make a move and luckily I was the one that did. I couldn’t be happier.

“Over the past year on the Challenge Tour, I feel like I’ve put myself in contention quite a lot. I did it in India and in the Netherlands but haven’t got it over the line. It’s been an amazing week and I’m very happy to get it done.”

Fitzpatrick started the day three strokes behind overnight leader Manley, but birdied two of his opening four holes to close the gap to one. After Manley bogeyed the sixth, Fitzpatrick took the outright lead for the first time on the following hole with a gain at the seventh.  

The Englishman then added back-to-back birdies on 12 and 13 to move clear and despite a bogey on the 15th, he parred his way home to secure a resounding win on a course that he admits provided a tough challenge all week.

“I bogeyed the 18th on day three, but before that I’d gone 48 holes without a bogey, which around this course is pretty good,” he added. “It’s a tough golf course as it’s so tight off the tee. You’ve almost got to pick the widest part of the fairway to aim at, and then be sensible when approaching the greens and try to make your birdies from there.”

Conor Purcell secured a top 20 finish despite a disappointing 3 over 75 in the final round for a 2 under total and a tie for 17th alongside Northern Ireland’s Jonathan Caldwell who shot a 1 over 73.

It was also a better day for both Cameron Raymond and Dermot McElroy who salvaged some pride after disappointment on moving day.

Raymond recovered from a 78 on day 3 to shoot a final round 70 for an even par total and a top 30 finish and McElroy recovered from a nightmare 82 on day 3 to shoot 15 shots lower in the final round. A 5 under 67 for a 4 over total and a tie for 46th place.

South African Casey Jarvis remains at the top of the Road to Mallorca Rankings on 1,131 points, with Frenchman Ugo Coussaud in second on 995. Manley’s second place finish this week sees him enter the top ten for the first time this season. 

The Road to Mallorca now heads to Aberdeenshire for the Farmfoods Scottish Challenge supported by the R&A from 10-13 August. 


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