Golf: Fitzpatrick wins US Amateur championship and selected for Walker Cup

Sheffield's Matt Fitzpatrick with the Havemeyer Trophy after winning in the final round of match play at the 2013 U.S. Amateur at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass.  (Copyright USGA/John Mummert)
Sheffield's Matt Fitzpatrick with the Havemeyer Trophy after winning in the final round of match play at the 2013 U.S. Amateur at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass. (Copyright USGA/John Mummert)
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Sheffield’s Matthew Fitzpatrick is the history boy after becoming the first English winner of the US Amateur championship since Harold Hilton in 1911.

The 18-year-old beat Australia’s Oliver Goss in Massachusetts on Sunday in a brilliant display of nerveless golf.

Oh brother! Matt Fitzpatrick shakes hands with his caddie Alex Fitzpatrick after winning during the final round of match play at the 2013 U.S. Amateur at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass (Copyright USGA/John Mummert)

Oh brother! Matt Fitzpatrick shakes hands with his caddie Alex Fitzpatrick after winning during the final round of match play at the 2013 U.S. Amateur at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass (Copyright USGA/John Mummert)

He stood 1 up after a tremendous battle over the first 18 holes that saw Goss in front after the 10th hole only for Fitzpatrick to retake the lead at the 15th and halve the next three with pars.

In the afternoon session Goss quickly levelled but pars at the 20th and 21st holes put Fitzpatrick 2 up.

A bogey five on the 27th hole handed Goss one back but the Hallamshire Golf Club member was two in front again after a par on the 28th, and with Goss bogeying the 32nd and 33rd the championship was Fitzpatrick’s.

It is a victory of enormous magnitude for the former Tapton School student, who only received his A Level results of a B and two C’s while playing in the tournament’s earlier rounds last week.

Not only has he already earned his place in the line up at next year’s US Masters and US Open major championships but when he picks up the Havemeyer Trophy it will read like a who’s who of golf, particularly American golf.

Tiger Woods, three times, Phil Mickelson, Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer and the great Bobby Jones are all former winners of the Championship, which for many years was considered a major title alongside the likes of The Open and the US Open.

Another name of resonance will be that of two-time winner Francis Ouimet, who is widely credited with starting the boom in American golf when he beat England’s Harry Vardon and Jersey’s Ted Ray to the 1913 US Open at The Country Club in Brookline, Massachusetts.

And it is over the same course that Fitzpatrick, with 14-year-old brother Alex caddying and parents Russell and Sue in the gallery, has triumphed to further confirm his presence as the country’s most talented young player.

Already this year he finished as the leading amateur at The Open Championship at Muirfield last month and was runner-up in the British Amateur Championship.

This autumn he will take up a scholarship at Northwestern University in Illinois with plans to turn professional after that, he told The Star in an interview before The Open, if he’s “good enough”.

Fitzpatrick’s glorious week was completed on Monday morning with the announcement of the Great Britain & Ireland team for the Walker Cup.

The match against the USA will be played at the National Golf Links of America in Southampton, New York, September 7 and 8.

The GB&I team will bid to defend the trophy they won in dramatic fashion at Royal Aberdeen in 2011.

Fitzpatrick’s route to the title.

Stroke play qualification

Round One 67, Round Two 70

Match play

Last 64: Matt Fitzpatrick 4 & 3 Gerrit Chambers, Brush Prairie, Wash.

Last 32: Matt Fitzpatrick 4 & 3 Blake Morris, Waterbury, Conn.

Last 16: Matt Fitzpatrick 4 & 3 Gavin Hall, Pittsford, N.Y.

Last 8: Matt Fitzpatrick 4 & 3 Adam Ball, Richmond, Va.

Semi-final: Matt Fitzpatrick 2 & 1 Corey Conners, Canada.

Final: Matt Fitzpatrick 4 & 3 Oliver Goss, Australia.

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