England and Wales (South West) Region
09 Jun 19
Converting a five shot lead over your closest rival proved to be a far greater task than Ashley Mansell expected before he inched his way to victory in the Total Triumph Classic at Oake Manor.
Welshman Cennydd Mills from Cardiff has never come closer to winning an Order of Merit event. He closed the gap and forced the Clevedon assistant to make a six-foot birdie putt on the last to win the £1,600 first prize.
It was nip and tuck all the way in torrential rain, far tougher conditions than in the opening round when Mansell starred with a nine-under-par return of 61. After two birdies on the first three holes he suffered a triple bogey seven on the seventh after driving out of bounds.
Mills sensed his chance had come and had drawn level by the 15th before Mansell restored the lead with a birdie four at the 17th. He was indebted to a home member with whom he won the previous day’s betterball. Jason Brock stayed to be his caddy and made a vital contribution at the last.
“He helped me with the putt,” he said. ”He told me the line which was not the one I would have chosen otherwise.”
Mills continued to battle until the end. His second shot on the 18th went through the green and he failed to make the birdie that would have brought a play off.
Earlier David Dixon (Enmore Park) produced an impressive best-of-the-day 66 to reach third. “Unbelievable in those morning conditions,“ said West manager Robert Moss who was impressed with the standard of play and organisation.
Mills was not far behind and produced a series of polished shots in his 68. He was the only other player to break 70. Mansell shot 72. Louis Boston (Chippenham) faded away with 75