Phil Golding equalled the course record over the London Golf Club’s International course en route to winning the Staysure PGA Seniors Championship.
The 56-year-old Londoner’s stunning final round 63 at the Kent venue saw him come from six shots behind to take the title by two shots from Sweden’s Magnus Atlevi and claim the € 67,446 first prize.
Golding, who won the Travis Perkins Masters and the Swiss Senior Open last season, finished on 18 under par for the week, following earlier rounds of 72, 67 and 68.
Golding began the final day five groups ahead of the overnight leaders Santiago Luna and Greg Turner, but started his surge up the leaderboard with four birdies in his first five holes, before he gained another shot on the seventh to make the turn in 31.
A further four birdies saw Golding join Luna at the head of affairs, before the Spaniard made three bogeys in four holes on his back nine to leave the Englishman two shots clear. Even with a dropped shot on the 16th Golding remained in control, and gave himself the chance for victory as he birdied the last after his 20-foot eagle putt failed to drop for a new course-record.
With the following groups unable to reach the 18 under par target, Golding was crowned champion, and added his name to the illustrious list of past PGA Senior Championship winners.
Golding, who is attached to Sandy Lodge Golf Club in Hertfordshire, said: “I never thought I’d win when I teed off this morning as I was six shots behind. I started well by birdieing the first two and then was five under after seven. The momentum putt for me, and what helped to keep me going was the par on nine. I hit a poor drive into the bunker. It was a good shot out, but I was 20-foot short for par, however, I sank it and that kept me going.”
“The only time I looked at the leaderboard was on 16, after I made a mistake there. I made a good par on 17, and then a nice two-putt for birdie on the last. Magnus and Santi were up there, but it wasn’t until 30 minutes later that I knew I was the champion.”
He added: It’s an honour to win the Staysure PGA Seniors Championship. It’s the 60th anniversary of this event, so I’m privileged to win this trophy and be associated with the PGA Seniors title and its past champions.”
Magnus Atlevi finished runner-up after a final round 69, while Paul Broadhurst shot the second lowest round of the final day, a seven-under 65, to finish tied third alongside Luna and South Africa’s Chris Williams.