Diss Golf Club’s James Biggs flying the flag at English Amateur Championship

A proud James Biggs of Diss Golf Club picks up the Lagonda Trophy at Gog Magog earlier this season

A proud James Biggs of Diss Golf Club picks up the Lagonda Trophy at Gog Magog earlier this season Picture: CLUB - Credit: Archant

James Biggs is leading the local challenge at the English Amateur Championship, which is being staged on the Lancashire coast this week.

The Diss Golf Club player, who has won the Suffolk Championship for the past two years, has reached the final 32 after coming through qualifying and then winning his opening matchplay encounter.

He now takes on Oliver Farrell (Evesham) in the third round, with the match getting under way at 7.46am today.

With a field of nearly 300 players competing at Formby and Hesketh getting through the 36-hole qualifying competition was an achievement in itself, with only the top 64 and ties making it through to the knock-out stages at Formby.

Biggs recorded two rounds of 71, with 10 birdies thrown into the mix, to finish in a tie for 21st position on one under. His reward was a first round match against Connor Byers from Langley Park and he came through it 3&1 to keep his hopes of national glory alive.

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Rookery Park's Calvin Sherwood also qualified for the matchplay, with rounds of 70 and 75 leaving him right on the mark at two over.

That meant he had to participate in the first round needed to whittle the field down to exactly 64 and he was beaten 3&2 by Olly Huggins of Frilford Heath.

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The three other Norfolk players involved all bowed out in the strokeplay, with Giles Evans (Barnham Broom) and Toby Briggs (Dunston Hall) both unable to build on solid starts.

After opening with rounds of 73 they slipped out of contention in the second round, with Evans posting a 76 and Briggs a 77.

Heacham Manor's Warren Bates, who succeeded Briggs as county champion in June, recorded two rounds of 78 to finish well adrift on 13 over par.

On the professional scene it has been a disappointing few days for King's Lynn's Jack Yule on the Europro Tour.

Having put himself in contention at the Pentahotels Championship at Caversham Heath last week with rounds of 69 and 70 he posted a disappointing 75 on the final day to drop down to a tie for 26th. He then finished close to the bottom of the field at the IFX Winged Boots Championship at Foxhills Club and Resort after a pair of 80s.

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