PURLEY DOWNS' Joseph Carmody-Firth showed perseverance as well as talent to become the Surrey U18 champion on a tough day at Camberley Heath.
It was the first county title for 17-year-old Carmody-Firth, who plays off an impressive two handicap.
"It was a bit of surprise really," he said. "I have not been playing much golf as I have been studying hard for four AS Level exams and the conditions were quite tough."
Indeed, this was a championship that very nearly did not happen. At 7am the course was still flooded from overnight rain, and only a huge effort from the greenstaff saved the day. As it was, the course held up well, with soft greens allowing the players to attack the pin positions.
After the morning round five players, including Carmody-Firth, shared the lead on 72, which was great scoring under the circumstances.
"I think the game change for me was the eighth where I holed a monster 60ft putt right across the green," he enthused.
Carmody-Firth held his nerve and came out the winner with an afternoon score of 74, one shot ahead of Alfredo Curbishley (Burhill) whose scores of 73 and 74 were remarkable for a 14-year-old.
"It got a lot windier in the afternoon," he added.
"So it was just a question of holding on for the best score you could get."
Carmody-Firth goes forward to the Junior Champion of Champions Final later in the summer.