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Landslide victories in Spain

ENGLAND’S teams Alford and Milliner secured landslide victories in the Handicap and Scratch categories at the 10th anniversary of the 2017 Sky SPORTS European Father & Son Golf Championships (www.fatherandsongolf.co.uk) in the brilliant sunshine of Cadiz in Andalucia, southern Spain.

Runaway champions Andy and son, Tom, from Branston Golf & Country Club in Staffordshire won by an incredible nine shots from their nearest rivals in the Handicap Championship whilst in the Scratch Championship, Gary and Justin Milliner recorded their third win to become the only team in the event’s 10-year history to win the Championship three times.

Despite making their debut in the tournament, the Alfords, eight-handicapper Andy and his 16-year-old son Tom, who plays off five, showed no sign of nerves. The duo made their move on day two over the challenging Seve Ballesteros San Roque New Course with a 10-under-par 46 points with Tom shooting 3 under par with his own ball, giving them a massive five-shot lead going into the third round at 14 under par.

On the final day over San Roque’s magnificent Old Course, Andy birdied the first hole to get off to a dream start and from there they never looked like capitulating and increased their lead to record their impressive nine-shot victory.

At the close of another hugely enjoyable Championships for everyone involved, Dad Andy commented, “I can’t believe it, it all seems like a dream” whilst son Tom said, “I can’t wait to see us on Sky SPORTS! This is what I want to do – I want to be a Tour Professional.”

In the ten years of staging of this incredibly popular event, the Scratch Championship was won by the largest ever margin. The Milliners, English though resident in Germany, secured their silverware with a score of 15 under par, shooting a consistent five under each day, which was a decisive nine shots ahead of fellow countrymen Gareth and Charles Bradley and past champions David and George Mills.

Going out last on the final day scratch handicapper, Justin, eagled the par 5, 9th and 17th holes and then chipped in for birdie on the 18th to clinch the title in style in front of the Sky SPORTS TV cameras and a delighted crowd of spectators.

The three-day Championships were hosted by two of Cadiz’s finest golf courses, the Almenara Golf Club and San Roque Club near Sotogrande, which were both in excellent condition thanks to the hard work of experienced European Tour greenkeeper, Robert Bell.

Father-and-son teams from all over Europe and the US champions competed in the 2-ball, better ball format over 54 holes in this picturesque corner of Cadiz, which is considered to be one of Spain’s top golfing destinations.

Last year’s champions, European Tour professional Matthew Southgate and his father, Ian, were unable to defend their title as Matthew was invited to play in the WGC-HSBC Champions in China.

Sponsored by the Cadiz and Andalucia Tourist Boards, the event will showcase the fabulous golf available in this part of Spain when Sky SPORTS broadcast the tournament in a highlights programme on December 5th, 2017.

As one of Europe’s favourite golf destinations for families and groups, Andalucia was the perfect venue for the Championships whilst the fact that the sun shines virtually every day of the year makes it an ideal location in which to hold a tournament in late October.

The full leaderboard for the Championships can be found here:

http://www.fatherandsongolf.co.uk/member/leaderboard

Given the popularity of this established event, bookings for next year’s Championships are already being taken so anyone interested in taking part in 2018 should log on to www.fatherandsongolf.co.uk to secure a place with a £200 deposit.

Alternatively participants can sign up for next year’s event by calling + 44 (0)1702 680180 or emailing Jackie@fatherandsongolf.co.uk.