Rasmus Hojgaard helps Sam Mukherjee recover from horror hole at The Machrie
Sam Mukherjee used Rasmus Hojgaard as his inspiration as the Lothians youngster overcame a nightmare hole of his own to land a sweet success.
The Gullane 16-year-old won the boys’ event in The Race to The Machrie despite running up a quintuple-bogey 9 in the final round.
The horror hole left Mukherjee having to settle for a 78 but, having opened with an impressive 71, he still managed to claim a three-shot victory.
And, as he savoured the triumph in an event that brings players together from the Paul Lawrie, Stephen Gallacher and Barrie Douglas Foundations, Mukherjee said he’d been aware of what had happened to Hojgaard the previous day.
Playing in the third round of the Cazoo Open de France, the young Dane also ran up a quintuple bogey - an 8 in his case - at the second hole at Le Golf National before recovering to sign for a 74.
He was pipped for the title the following day by Guido Migliozi as the Italian signed off with a scintillating 62, but, at the same time, Hojgaard had an influence on the outcome on Islay.
“I felt I played just as well on Sunday, but the weather was much harder as it was rainy and windy and it was just one hole,” said Mukherjee of what happened at the par-4 fifth. “I hit a good drive but it caught on the wrong side of the wind. However, I managed to keep my composure well, which was pleasing.
“I saw that Rasmus Hojgaard had done the same thing on Saturday and I thought it was really impressive how he had managed to battle back after being six-over through three holes. So, after my own setback on Sunday, I knew there was still a long way to go.”
Helped by picking up three birdies in the four holes in a strong finish to the opening circuit, Mukherjee still managed to finish with a bit in hand over Archie Finnie from Royal Burgess and Deeside’s Callum Bruce.
“My game has been trending in the last couple of events and it’s nice to get a win,” he admitted, having seen both his twin brother Oliver and their younger brother Cameron land victories earlier in the year. “Oli had won the Scottish Amateur and CJ had won the Stephen Gallacher Match Play, so I felt that I had to win one as well,” he added.
The three brothers are in action again in the same event this week, having moved on to Le Golf National for the Faldo Series French Championship.
“The winner gets a DP World Tour invite and second and third both get Challenge Tour starts. So there’s some good rewards on the line,” said Sam.
“We had a good practice round today, though we only managed to get 12 holes in due to the weather as it was absolutely torrential rain and windy.”
Maverton’s Summer Elliot holed a 30-footer to pip Freya Rusell (Royal Troon) in a play-off to land the girls’ title at The Machrie after they’d tied on seven-over-par.
“It was good fun and the course was brilliant,” said Mukherjee. “It is run very well and we got a couple of video messages from Stevie and Paul, which was nice. The foundations do so much for junior golf.”