Norfolk golfer Toby Briggs shines in opening round of European Amateur Championship

Toby Briggs is all smiles after his excellent opening round of 65 at the European Championship at Wa

Toby Briggs is all smiles after his excellent opening round of 65 at the European Championship at Walton Heath. Picture: Leaderboard Photography - Credit: Leaderboard Photography

Norfolk youngster Toby Briggs gave another demonstration of his talent this week when he turned on the style in one of the biggest amateur tournaments of them all.

The 17-year-old from Dunston Hall fired a brilliant 65 on the opening day of the European Championship at Walton Heath in Surrey to stand just one shot off the lead.

He slipped back on day two with a 75 featuring five bogeys and two birdies, including one at the last, but it has still been a good start to a competition that features many of the world's best amateur players,

Briggs, an England boy international, would have caught first round leader Lorenzo Scalise but for a three-putt on the 18th.

'I was about 30 feet away and wanted to hole it for a birdie but I went about six feet past and missed it coming back,' he explained.

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Earlier he'd holed several putts of around 30 feet and pitched in for an eagle three on the 16th, adding: 'I'm happy after last week at the British Amateur when I struggled off the tee and missed the cut. Today I wasn't great of the tee but I had some good breaks and hit nearly every green in regulation.'

King's Lynn's Jack Yule opened with a one over 73.

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While focusing on the big event at Walton Heath, both Briggs and Yule have declared themselves available for Norfolk's third Anglian League match of the season against Leicester and Rutland this weekend – much to the delight of skipper Kevin Webb. The European Championship finishes on Saturday – and both players intend to make the trip to Luffenham Heath the next day.

'That shows the spirit in the side – everyone is desperate to play,' said Webb. 'Toby and Jack are both competing in a really big event but still wanted to play on Sunday too, which is great.

'We will be going there with a really strong side and if we could come away with a win we would be well placed to challenge for the title.'

The Norfolk pairings are Richard Wilson and Dylan Green, Giles Evans and Jack Yule, Thomas Nudd and Toby Briggs and Simon Clark and Iain Yule.

Ian Rollett's second string, who have a win and a half to their name so far, take on Leicestershire and Rutland at Eaton on Sunday.

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