WETHERBY, England (August 18, 2007)--Matthew Cryer produced the faultless golf he had played most of the week to beat American Paul Simson 5 & 4 in the final of the British Mid-Amateur Championship at Alwoodley and was 3-under-par when the match finished on the 14th green.
“I’m absolutely delighted to have won after the disappointment of two weeks ago when I lost in the final of the English Amateur," said the 32-year-old Englishman “My game’s just got better and better all week. I’ve driven it really nicely and putted really well.
“This my best win so far without a doubt,” said the Coventry and Warwickshire player, who is in the England team for the Home Internationals at Co Louth in September.
“The quality of some of the containing golf I’ve had to play against such good opposition this week has really stretched me, which is fantastic, great for my game. I just hope I can carry it through this next week,” said Cryer, who flies to Berlin tomorrow morning to compete in the European Open, in which he finished runner-up in Belgium two years ago.
After they shared pars on the first hole Cryer went ahead on the second when he sank a six foot birdie putt and extended his lead on the long third with another birdie. Simson conceded the short seventh when he failed to get down in par with Cryer just eight feet away.
Cryer won the long eighth against the odds. He was in heather off the tee and could only hack out. Simson had hit a great drive, but then pushed his three-wood second into a bunker short and right of the green, while Cryer hit his third pin high right. Simson splashed out just short of the green and pitched to five feet but missed. Cryer pitched stone dead to win the hole with a par and go 4-up.
Simson hit back briefly at the short ninth when he holed a monster putt for a birdie two to cut the deficit to three, but after they halved the 10th he lost the short 11th to go back to four down when he took three from the front of the green.
Needing to win holes, the 56-year-old insurance executive from North Carolina was perhaps running out of steam after an arduous week and although he only had short irons into the greens of the 12th and 13th he couldn’t get them close enough for birdies.
When he took three from the front of the green on the 206-yard par three 14th and Cryer got a regulation par it was all over.
“He played very solidly and played some fantastic golf,” said Simson. “I just couldn’t do anything about it this afternoon. But I think I’ll be invited back next year.
Simpson is due at Pinehurst about an hour from his home in North Carolina to defend the North-South Amateur Championship on Tuesday.
--Story courtesy RANDA