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Jucmane dazzles at Faldo Series Poland Championship

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17 July 2018

Warsaw, Poland (17 July): Marija Luize Jucmane claimed a one shot victory in the Faldo Series Poland Championship at First Warsaw Golf & Country Club. Jucmane laid the foundations with a 74 and a 79 before a wonderful final day 68 held off Rivekka Jumagulova from Kazakhstan. The 17-year old Latvian will go to her first Faldo Series Grand Final with high aspirations.

Champion Jucmane commented: “I am really riding high on confidence at the moment. I only just shot my very first round under par a few weeks ago so to have my second today and so low when it mattered most is an amazing feeling. This is a very narrow golf course that requires a clear strategy which I stuck to throughout the week.  To take the victory is a real bonus and I cannot wait to get to the UAE for the Grand Final.”

Sir Nick Faldo was notably pleased with the event. “The region is full of talent and ripe for huge strides in golf development. That’s why we’re so happy to be back in Poland again. The Series has been in the country for a long time and we’ve always found it a very worthwhile endeavour. There’s a great international feel to the winners and they’ve travelled from far and wide to be here so we appreciate the effort and dedication they’ve put in.”

This was the first year Warsaw First GCC hosted a Faldo Series event and the course delivered a thorough test for the players. The players faced multiple water hazards on the front nine and were also forced to be at their most accurate – the tree-lined back nine punished the wayward. The course was dry but intermittent showers graced the course on the final day despite a lightning storm threatening to interrupt proceedings.

Jucmane claimed the Girls’ Under-21 category along with the overall victory. With few World Amateur Golf Ranking events in Latvia Jucmane travels to compete. Having witnessed many of her compatriots play in previous Faldo Series events Jucmane was keen to follow in their footsteps. Her 68 on the final day featured three birdies in a row – a fine effort on such a tough track.

The Boys’ Under-21 division was a tight affair. Slovakian Adam Sangala eventually prevailed by a single shot over Poland’s Marcin Bogusz. Bogusz looked set to claim the category before Sangala pulled off an audacious Eagle on the 17th hole, a Par 5. Sangala will be delighted to have fired the only eagle of the week when it mattered most. He will also be thrilled to attend his second Grand Final. 

Adam Balatka played very well in the Under-18 division to claim a two-shot victory. The Czech national fired rounds of 81, 74, and 79 to hold off Slovakia’s Jakub Kokavec. Balatka held an overnight lead of a single shot and he cut a composed figure as he set about his work. His reward for his fine play is a first Grand Final.

The Boys’ Under-16 contained a huge amount of young Polish talent and it was Maksymilian Bialy who prevailed by a single shot. Bialy shot 77, 78 and 85 to beat Bartosz Bogusz into second. Bialy did stutter a little on the back nine heading home but was able to keep it together sufficiently to qualify for a first Grand Final.

Rivekka Jumagulova provided the main threat to the eventual champion Marija Luize Jucmane. Jumagulova held the lead overnight after rounds of 73 and 76. Her last day 73 was a fine effort but she was left only able to applaud Jucmane’s heroic 68 as she watched overall victory fall from her grasp. Fortunately for Jumagulova she comfortably claimed her Under-16 division and will head to her second Grand Final.

Faldo’s personal coach Keith Wood worked with the players all week and the First Warsaw GCC coaches were also of great assistance to the aspiring golfing superstars. A Mizuno representative was also on hand to show the players their latest equipment. The representative was keen to show why Mizuno irons were voted the most popular in a recent Tour survey.

Today, 40 Faldo Series tournaments take place in 30-plus countries worldwide, touching thousands of golfers each year. Past winners include Major Champions Tseng Ya-ni and Rory McIlroy, who took his tally of professional Major titles to four with his wins at the 2014 Open Championship and US PGA Championship.

Leading final scores:

Boys’ Under-21:

238 – Adam Sangala (SVK) 79-77-82;

239 – Marcin Bogusz (POL) 80-77-82

Boys’ Under-18:

234 – Adam Balatka (CZE) 81-74-79

236 – Jakub Kokavec (SVK) 79-77-80

Boys’ Under-16:  

240 – Maksymilian Bialy (POL) 77-78-85

241 – Bartosz Bogusz (POL) 78-79-84

Girls’ Under-21:

221 – Marija Luize Jucmane (LAT) 74-79-68

229 – Dorota Zalewska (POL) 73-82-74

Girls’ Under-16:

222 –Rivekka Jumagulova (KAZ) 73-76-73

240 – Lucia Hrbikova (SVK) 79-80-81

For full scores and results go to faldoseries.com

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