At the age of 20, when he was only playing his 11th professional tournament and while he was still an amateur, Martin Couvra opened his “pro” record by winning the Challenge de España! The young protégé of Mathieu Santerre defeated the Italian Andrea Pavan and the Irish Dermot McElroy in the play-off.
Leader on Saturday evening, Benjamin Hébert finished 4th. We knew the young man was very talented, after an impressive amateur career, marked in particular at the start of the year by his exploits in South Africa. Now Martin Couvrera is rewriting history among professionals.
Martin Couvra, statements
Still an amateur, the student of Mathieu Santerre won for the first time on the Challenge Tour during the Challenge de España, contested in Almeria in Andalusia. He is the first Frenchman since Julien Brun to win a Challenge Tour tournament as an amateur (the Toulouse Open in 2012) and the seventh amateur in history to achieve this performance.
The player from Cannes-Mougins, a pure product of FFGolf, was able to make up a deficit of 4 shots at the top of the leaderboard where Benjamin Hébert sat on Saturday evening, finally 4th. To achieve this, Couvrera signed a superb card of 65 with a birdie on his 72nd hole.
This 18th and last hole of the Playa Serena Golf Club course in Almeria was successful for him, since in the play-off, he defeated two opponents thanks to two pars on this par 4. The first eliminated the Italian Andrea Pavan, author of a bogey, the second allowed him to beat the 30-year-old Northern Irishman Dermot McElroy, who also made a mistake on this hole by a little less than 360 meters.
The winner of three major South African amateur titles at the start of the season, now has full playing rights on the Challenge Tour for the remainder of the season and next. Couvra climbs 126 places, he is now in 41st place in the Road to Mallorca ranking and can even allow himself to dream of accession to the DP World Tour during the Rolex Challenge Grand Final in Alcanada at the beginning of November.
He will have to maintain his place in the top 45 during the next 4 tournaments. Thanks to this success, Martin Couvrera succeeds Antoine Rozner, the last French winner of this tournament in 2019. Previously Adrien Saddier (2016) and Victor Perez (2017) had already won in an event which smiled on the Blues!
Benjamin Hébert, in the lead this Sunday morning and who hoped to end a long period without success, got stuck in the final with a card in par, but he finished in a solid 4th place. Romain Wattel and Sébastien Gros claim a Top 20.
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