30th March 2021 | Alps Tour Golf

Paul Margolis Wins the MIRA Live Soul Open

March 30th, 2021 – Lecce, Italy. Yet another suspense-filled finish for the final round of the second tournament of the Alps Tour 2021 Spring Season here at the Acaya Golf Resort where the young French amateur, Paul Margolis edged out Matteo Manassero to win the tournament by one shot at 201 (-12).

Teeing off in the flight ahead of the leader, Margolis had a rock-solid front nine with not a bogey in sight and four birdies to leave the 9th green -11. Behind him yesterday’s leader, Manassero, teed off at the 9th level with the French player. However, a birdie saw him turning for home at -12. Yesterday’s runner-up, Angel Hidalgo Portillo saw the leaders pulling away from him after carding a double-bogey, bogey, and birdie to move back to -6.

Margolis continued his bogey-free run on the back nine with 3 pars and two birdies to be sitting -13 on the 14th. In his rear-view mirror, was Manassero who finished the 14th hole at -12 after one birdie and a bogey. Four holes to go and everything to play for.

Bogey, par, birdie for Margolis to head for the 18th at -13. Bogey, birdie, bogey for Manassero to leave him trailing at -11 on the last hole. Margolis missed his putt to finish with a bogey and headed into the clubhouse at 201 (-12). Everything depended now on Manassero as he had birdied the 18th in the last two rounds in which case, he would have forced a play-off. Unfortunately, today he was not third time lucky and left the green with a par to hand the victory to Margolis.

A fantastic result for the amateur player from the Terre Blanche Golf Resort who just last spring decided to stop his university studies in the USA to devote himself 100% to golf. Currently pre-selected for the French team for next year’s International Amateur Team Championship to be held in France. The MIRA Live the Soul Open is his first professional competition win. When asked how he felt:

” I don’t think it’s sunk in fully yet. It’s hard to take in. I’ve just spent three fantastic weeks here  at the Acaya Golf Resort and this last week was particularly emotional. It’s difficult to realise that on just my third  start on the Alps Tour I get a win”.

Was he aware of what Matteo Manassero was doing in the flight behind him?

Not at all. I told myself last night that I had a job to do out here today and that was to hit the best shots I could. I didn’t look at the leaderboard at all and just stayed focussed on my game “.

What are his plans for the future?

” This result may change things a bit. I had planned to play the Alps Tour as an amateur but I think now I may throw myself into it whole-heartedly. I do have a project with the French Golf Federation to play in the International Team Championship next year so I just need to take the time to reorganise my schedule”.

In third place is another amateur, the Italian Gregorio De Leo on 205 (-8) who was the winner of the Italian International Men’s Amateur Championship at the beginning of March.

In fourth place is Angel Hidalgo Portillo from Spain 206 (-7). That keeps him at fourth position on the Order of Merit. Despite having just missed out on victory today, Matteo Manassero now heads the Alps Tour OofM after two tournaments.

The Alps Tour remains in Italy for the month of April with the next stop for the players being the Abruzzo Alps Open at the Miglianico Golf & Country Club in Pescara from 22nd – 24th April 2021.

Final Results: click here

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29th March 2021 | Alps Tour Golf

Manassero the Recidivist Takes the Lead End of Day 2

March 29th, 2021 – Lecce, Italy. Yesterday’s play concluded this morning with no change in the leader at the MIRA Live the Soul Open but by the end of the day Matteo Manassero finds himself in the same position as at last week’s MIRA Golf Experience Acaya Open after thirty-six holes. Ahead by one stroke on 133 (-9), he moved twelve places up the board after shooting a -6 (65) today with 7 birdies and a bogey. A pleasing result for the Italian:

“A very solid round. Well, we’re in the same position as a few days ago, -9 and up on the leader board and that’s obviously a really good feeling but golf is like that! I’m always really focussed on the work I’m doing and on the process of becoming better so those are really good signs that I’m definitely going in the right direction and it’s really good to have another opportunity tomorrow. The last one didn’t go too well. In the end I lost by one shot, so I guess a few putts were the key but it’s always like that. Anyway, it’s really good after that to come and have two really good rounds again and be in a different but similar position and be on the leader board”.

Angel Hidalgo Portillo retains his second place from yesterday on 134 (-8) alongside the Italian Enrico di Nitto. Teeing off at 13:10 Hidalgo kept the suspense going right up to the end. Starting at -6, six birdies and two bogeys saw him approach the 17th at -10 but he concluded the round with two bogeys for a -2 (66) for the round to leave him trailing the leader by one stroke. Di Nitto who was second on the 2019 Alps Tour OofM and now plays on the Challenge Tour scored a -6 (65) to join Manassero with the lowest round of the day. Not having played since November, Di Nito was glad to be back in competition:

“This is a very good place to start. The course is great, conditions are tough and it’s very important to have some tournaments before the start of the season. It was a very, very good day. I had some good feelings and I tried to take them to the course today. I made some great putts and some great shots to the green. On the back nine the wind was picking up a bit, so I had to stay focussed, more so than in the beginning and it paid off”.

Three players share fourth place at 135 (-7) including yesterday’s leader, Cristiano Terragni. The birdies did not fall for him like yesterday and with four bogeys he finished at +1 (72). The Dutch player, Koen Kouwenaar, remains in contention with a -2 (69) after his third position finish yesterday and the French amateur, Paul Margolis remains solid having carded a -3 (68).

Manuel Elvira from Spain also lost a bit of ground today moving from third to seventh after doing par (71) for 137 (-5) whilst two Italian amateurs are right behind him on 138 (-4) Gregorio De Leo and Alessandro Tadini.

The cut came at 144 (+2) with 47 professionals and 9 amateurs going through to tomorrow’s final.

Windy conditions are forecast for Tuesday after two relatively calm days, so anything could happen as we saw last week, here at the Acaya Golf Resort. First flights tee off at 08:00 am from the 1st and 10th with the leaders heading off at 09:39 am.

Round 2 Results: click here

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25th March 2021 | Alps Tour Golf

Matteo Manassero Makes His Move & Leads After Round 2 at Acaya

March 25th, 2021 – Lecce, Italy. Another stellar round from Matteo Manassero puts the Italian in the lead at 133 (-9) here at the Acaya Golf Resort. An extra birdie today and just one bogey saw him in the clubhouse with a -5 (66) for the second round. Reason enough for him to be satisfied as he says:

“Two really good days. Yesterday was the first round in competition after 5 months so there was a question mark, But I was very, very satisfied with what I saw, with the decisions, with the game, with a lot of things. My mindset was really good so starting like that it’s obviously easier and you just try to stay the same way and keep the same strategy and then hopefully the game follows. Luckily, today was another solid day and going into tomorrow I will just try to be the Matteo of the last two days and mentally try to copy and use the attitude I’ve been working on and that’s my main purpose and the rest we’ll see. But I’m really satisfied”.

In second place we have a trio of players at 137 (-5): the French amateur, Theo Brizard, who started the day at par, charged up the leader board to joint second. Despite a double and a single bogey on his card, his 8 birdies saw him card a -5 (66). He is joined by his compatriot, Edgar Catherine, an Alps Tour player since 2019, who fired a -4 (67) today with a total of six birdies and two bogeys to move up ten places. Rounding out the group is the Italian player, Jacopo Vecchi Fossa, who moved up two slots with his -3 (68) today after 6 birdies and two bogeys.

In fifth place, Ryan Lumsden from Scotland lost a bit of ground on yesterday’s third place with a -1(70) today after three bogeys, two birdies and an eagle whilst yesterday’s leader, Nicolas Platret from France dropped back to ninth place despite starting with a birdie. A double bogey, four bogeys and two more birdies gave him a +3 (74) at the end of the 36 holes.

The lowest score of the day went to the Spaniard, Alex Esmatges who carded a -6 (65) however, only 27 of the 120 players came in under par today which demonstrates the difficulty of the course, something which Matteo Manassero confirmed:

The course is really tough. Yesterday, it was the toughest way to come back to competition after a while. It was blowing really hard, and this course doesn’t allow you to miss either right or left but my game was really solid both yesterday and today”.

The challenges of the course are also reflected in the cut that came at 147 (+5). A total of 52 players goes through to the final round tomorrow – 44 pros and 8 amateurs. Play tees off at 7:30 am from tee 1 with the leaders heading out at 11:25 am.

The forecast for tomorrow is mainly sunny skies with light and variable winds.

Results Round 2: click here

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21st September 2020 | Alps Tour Golf

The Alps Tour heads to Spain

Tomares, Sevilla (Spain), 21st September 2020 – After the thrilling last tournament in Italy with the much talked-about Matteo Manassero’s return to form at the Toscana Alps Open, the busy month of September continues for the Alps Tour players at the Alps de Andalucia in Sevilla, taking place from Wednesday 23rd to Friday 25th September.

The tournament has been a classic stop in our schedule, but last year it could not take place so this is a very welcome comeback with a new venue awaiting the Alps Tour players, Club Zaudìn Golf, a beautiful Gary Player design amidst orange and olive trees, with large fairways and ondulated greens.

And once again, we have a full field of players eager to hit the fairways, and a very long waiting list. A past winner of the Alps Tour Order of Merit (2018), the Spaniard Santi Tarrìo – is there, together with four of the current year tournament winners – from Spain, Jordi Garcia del Moral winner of Cervino Open and leader of the Order of Merit after six tournaments; and Alejandro Del Rey fresh from his French win two weeks ago; from Italy, Stefano Mazzoli, victor at the Red Sea Little Venice Open and from the Netherlands, Lars Keunen, winner of the Ein Bay Open.

Among the contenders this week, one past winner of the tournament – Austrian Clemens Gaster (2017) will be facing some stiff competition within the Spanish contingent with the likes of Alfredo Garcia Heredia, Carlos del Moral, Santiago Luna, David Borda and Scott Fernandez, all with European and Challenge Tour experience.

Out on the course the players face a par 71, 6.504 metres, designed by Gary Player and inaugurated in 1992, just 10 minutes from the centre of Seville.

One bonus will be the weather, with temperatures in the 27°-28° degrees and low winds.

Entries: click here

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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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