Bevan misses full-time Euro chance
GOLF by Neal Manning: WITH just seven holes to play of his sixth and final round in Spain last week, Jon Bevan was well on course to achieve his dream of playing on the European Tour full time next year.
WITH just seven holes to play of his sixth and final round in Spain last week, Jon Bevan was well on course to achieve his dream of playing on the European Tour full time next year.
But then the pressure began to tell and Jon, now attached to Ufford Park, finished with a 75, which meant that his hopes of gaining his card disappeared.
"I was devastated initially," he said "but on reflection I was delighted with my performance."
Although failing to finish in the top 35, Jon was two under par for his six rounds at Sotogrande and San Roque.
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It does mean, however, that he will have a full ranking on the Challenge Tour and will play in upwards of six European Tour events.
He will definitely be playing in the PGA Championship at Wentworth next May after winning the East Region order of merit this year.
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For any golfer to come through the qualifying rounds and gain his European Tour card takes some doing. After comfortably negotiating the first hurdle at Five Lakes, Jon went to Spain for the second qualifying round as the competition became strong.
Needing to finish in the top 32 at Emporva on the Costa Brava, Jon ended tied 25th after rounds of 75, 71 and 65. The fourth round was cancelled because of gale force winds that made playing golf impossible.
His third round 65 certainly saved the day, and Jon said: "In that round I holed some putts whereas I didn't in the first two rounds."
For the final qualifier, Jon's first target was to make the cut after four rounds, two of which were played at Sotogrande and the other two at San Roque.
He did it with something to spare, being five under par after rounds of 72, 72, 69 and 70.
One of his partners was Paul Broadhurst who played in the Ryder Cup match at Kiawah Island and the other was van Phillips, a former winner of a European Tour event.
He shot a level par 72 in his fifth round and was one under par after 11 holes of his final round.
"Then the pressure really started to tell," said Jon. "I three putted three of the remaining holes that was to prove costly. To be fair I didn't putt that badly, but on reflection perhaps I was too aggressive."
Yet Jon, who finished in 50th place, was higher than Broadhurst, van Phillips and another former Ryder Cup player Philip Walton.
While naturally disappointed, Jon remains upbeat and can't wait to get started again next year.
On December 28 he flies to South Africa to play for ten weeks on the Sunshine Tour that includes the Kenya Open and Ivory Coast Open.
"I want to take my game up another level," he says. "I've just had a fantastic year in which I won the East Region order of Merit as well as ten Pro-Ams."