Plus-one Habebul lifts Newton’s junior title

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Habebul Islam became the latest in a distinguished line of young players to become the holder of the Newton Green Junior Open title.

The 16-year-old from Ipswich, who now plays off plus-one, took the scratch prize as he recorded a two-over-par 71 at last Monday’s event.

Islam, who is now being home taught to give him time to develop his game further, was one shot ahead of Callum Hensby (Stoke-by-Nayland), who plays off three, with a 72.

This was the same score as the current Suffolk junior matchplay champion, Newton’s Harvey Watts.

A considerable headache for the organisers was the number of players misunderstanding how to score according to the rules of golf, which necessitated at least one possible disqualification being referred by telephone to England Golf.

There were 12 juniors playing off single figures. The only girl in the division, Fioana Stokes (Haverhill), playing off seven, won the nett prize with 69, beating Hensby on countback. Watts was third.

Higher handicappers played in Stableford divisions, with Henry Meadows, of Bury St Edmunds winning Division One, and Newton’s Nathan Willett, winning the 20-plus handicap in Division Two.

The Haverhill duo of Stokes and James Iron won the Aldous team cup, with Eloise Aldous, the Suffolk girls’ junior organiser, presenting the trophy on behalf of her family. The winners also receive a free year’s membership at Newton.

Newton men’s captain Gareth Evans presented the rest of the awards in a day organised by club professional Tim Cooper.

Results: Scratch championship, 71 Habebul Islam (Ipswich), 72 (ocb) Callum Hensby (Stoke-by-Nayland), 72 Harvey Watts (Newton).

Division One, 36 (ocb) Henry Meadows (Bury St Edmunds), 36 Isaac Thoombs (Stoke-by-Nayland), 35 Georgina Parker (Bury St Edmunds).

Division Two, 38 (ocb) Nathan Willett, 38 Callum Hughes (Fynn Valley), 30 Natham Thompson (Stoke-by-Nayland).