Ablett chalks up win number five


0908South Ablett

On a run of good form with two seconds and three wins in his last five events, James Ablett (Lee-on-the-Solent) shot an almost flawless four-under-par 68 to win the Waterlooville Pro-Am.

Ablett picked up £1,000, one of the larger winner’s cheques of the season, and by nudging the 69s of Jamie Harris (Nevill) and David Osborn (West Hill) into a tie for second place, gained some ground on the current Money List leader Harris as well. 

While the course and conditions were ideal, particularly the greens which Ablett described as “firm and very fast,” he endured a major headache from start to finish.

Nonetheless, starting at the 10th, Ablett was soon off the mark with a birdie two at the 11th, and despite three putting at the 12th, picked up another birdie at the 14th to complete his first nine in one-under-par.

Passing the leaderboard at the 18th, he saw that no-one was shooting low scores despite the five par fives. While not at his best, Ablett hit every fairway and green in regulation and with three holes left, Ablett struck putting gold with a 30 footer on the seventh.

Despite the eighth hole being his nemesis – “It just doesn’t suit my eye!” – a good drive left him a gap wedge which span back to leave an awkward little bump and run shot, but he promptly holed it for another birdie and three-under-par.

On in two at the par five ninth, Ablett made his last birdie for the winning card of 68. Delighted with his continuing good form, he explained, “In my last five events I’ve had two seconds in a couple of Hampshire PGA pro-ams and three regional wins – Copthorne, Stoneham and now Waterlooville – so I’m very happy with my swing at the moment.”

Ablett has also been making some improvements like using a line on his ball for putting. “It helps me focus on rolling the ball at the hole,” he explained, “and it seems to eliminate other thoughts which can distract you from the job of making a good putt.”

Ablett’s thoughts are now on the PGA Kent Open Championship at Prince’s, he commented: “I’ve always played well but putted badly down there, so I asked for some advice and was told to hit the putts of 15 foot and under more or less straight.

“I’m also putting my one-iron in the bag, ditching the five wood, and after playing in the recent Prince’s 27 event, I’m looking forward to seeing what I can do down there this time.”

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