19th September 2020 | Alps Tour Golf

Magnifico! – Matteo Manassero Claims Victory at Toscana Open

Grosseto, 19th September 2020 – At the end of an incredibly exciting round, Matteo Manassero sank a birdie putt on the 18th to win the 2020 Toscana Alps Open here at the Golf Club Toscana.

He had tweeted in January of this year that he was working with coach James Ridyard and that things were “moving forward nicely, step by step without rushing”. This win seems to augur well for the efficacity of his approach. Let’s hope that we will be seeing a lot more of Matteo Manassero out on the fairways in the not too distant future.

It’s very nice obviously, going back to winning a tournament is always a great pleasure and a great feeling, anywhere this happens“, said Manassero just after finishing his round. “I’m really happy and I’m really proud about the way I’ve played today, to be honest. After a long time and a lot of work, it’s a big achievement being able to run the right mindset everyday since the start until the end and I’m happy that the game supported, the putt supported, everything was on point; so yeah, I guess I’ve started the week thinking whether the work was good or not, and I guess it’s in good place”.

Until the end I just kept on playing and did not know whether I was leading, I didn’t watch, in fact on 18 I wasn’t sure; well, I guessed, but I didn’t know if I would win by many or by one, or if I needed a birdie.. part of the work has been to stay really on what I am doing and on the things that are under my control, and the leaderboard is not under my control; in the end I did well not to look at it, right?

The Italian had an intense battle in his round with Spanish playing partner, Angel Hidalgo Portillo, yesterday’s leader. The Spaniard had confessed to having some club problems in Round 2 and they seemed to be manifesting themselves again in Round 3 as he started with three bogeys on the first four holes to be at -13. Manassero, on the other hand, had yet another solid start with straight pars then birdie at the 4th to move to -15.

Spaniard Angel Hidalgo Portillo and Italian Matteo Manassero on the 18th green. Credit Alessandro Bellicini/Italianprotour

Portillo settled down and had two birdies and two pars to finish, putting him on -13 at the tenth, +1 (37) for the front nine. Manassero, however, with a birdie and an eagle to complete his nine, moved to -17.

A par each on the 10th, then Manassero dropped a shot on the 11th with a bogey whilst Portillo birdied to draw within two strokes of the Italian : -16 versus -14.

Birdie on the 13th for Portillo and par for Manassero put them at -15 and -16 respectively. Reverse roles on the 14th with birdie for Manassero and par for Portillo.

The Italian birdied the next two holes and seemed unstoppable whilst the Spaniard had just one birdie. Teeing off at the 17th, Manassero was at -19 and Portillo at -16. Then came the spanner in the works, bogey for Manassero and birdie for Portillo. Literally, everything to play for on the 18th hole par 5.

Portillo had the honours and when he reached the green his putter did not let him down and he holed out for birdie. Level scores at -18 each as Manassero lined up his final putt. In it dropped and Matteo Manassero could savour his first victory in a professional tournament since 2013.

In third place was the Spanish player, Manuel Elvira at 196 (-17). He had seemed also to be in contention for the title with birdies and pars through the 15th, but two bogeys saw the title move out of his grasp despite an eagle on the 18th.

The best round of the day was a -7 (64) and interestingly enough, all the players in the final round finished at least one stroke under par. The best round of the week -9 (62) came from the Italian amateur, Andrea Romano, leader on Day 1 who finished in joint eleventh position at 201 (-12).

Angel Hidalgo Portillo’s second place today moves him up eight places to sixth on the Order of Merit. Manuel Elvira moves up six slots to eleventh but no change at the top with Jordi Garcia Del Moral from Spain in first place.

Next stop Spain and the Andalucia Open. The Gary Player designed Zaudin Golf Club in Seville will welcome the players from 23rd to 25th September, so “hasta pronto” for more great golf from the rising stars of the Alps Tour!

Results Final Round: click here

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8th September 2020 | Alps Tour Golf

The Alps Tour Forges on to France

Metz (France), 8th September 2020 – The busy month of September continues for the Alps Tour players at the Open de la Mirabelle d’Or in Metz. Less than a week after the final of the Cervino Open in Italy, the French stage sees the 17th edition of the competition here at the Golf de la Grange aux Ormes.

And once again, we have a full field of players eager to hit the fairways. Nine of the top ten players on the Order of Merit count present including the four winners of the 2020 season tournaments so far: from Spain, Jordi Garcia del Moral fresh from his Italian win last weekend; from Austria, Lukas Nemecz, Gösser Open champion; from Italy, Stefano Mazzoli, victor at the Red Sea Little Venice Open and from the Netherlands, Lars Keunen, winner of the Ein Bay Open.

Last year’s Open de Mirabelle d’Or champion, the Dutch player, Lars Van Meijel, is absent but there are two other former Mirabelle winners here, both French. Hubert Tisserand won the competition in 2016 as an amateur and returns this year after turning professional in 2019. He is joined by Xavier Poncelet, an Alps Tour veteran who raised the trophy in 2012 and had a recent win in August at the Arcachon Open in France.

They will be facing some stiff competition within the French contingent with the likes of Julien Quesne. In 2007 he topped the Alps Tour OofM and went on to have two victories on the European Tour at the Andalucia Open in 2012 and the Italian Open in 2013. His compatriots, Victor Riu, second in the Alps Tour OofM in 2008 and Franck Daux currently compete on the Challenge Tour.

And amongst the amateurs, it is good to see the up and coming Spanish player, Joel Moscatel, currently 87th in the World Amateur Rankings and recent winner of the Catalunya Absoluto Championship this summer.

Out on the course the players face a par 71, 6664 yard/6094 metre parkland terrain lined with century old trees. The fairways are broad, on the whole, but with dense rough running the length to grab any wayward drives. However, the par four 11th hole has a very tight fairway which slopes down to the river that runs alongside it with an elevated green at the end surrounded by out of bounds. All of the greens are well-defended by bunkers and quite a few doglegs add to the interest. The 18th provides a whole array of challenges, from the fairway bunker on the left just before the dogleg, a second shot demanding precision to carry the water hazard in front of the green and also avoid the greenside bunker. It will be interesting to see how the players tackle this one.

One bonus will be the weather. After the very cold conditions at Cervino the players will be able to enjoy their practice rounds and tournament in a warmer climate. It also bodes well for the Pro-Am on Thursday 10th as the forecast for Metz is warm and sunny with temperatures reaching a high of 27°C/81°F on Sunday.

Entries: click here

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