Rigel Fernandes has once again done Mangaloreans proud by winning the Hurricane Junior Golf Tour (HJGT), for the second time in a row. With this win, he has become the only player to have won the tournament twice in succession.
On the very narrow and tight Reserve Course at Orange Lake Resort, Rigel Fernandes of Mangalore was able to stay consistent with his plan and win his second HJGT event of 2011.
Rigel, who shot +1 (72+71=143), wanted to come out this weekend and keep the ball in play to put himself in good position for his approach shots and stay out of trouble, and he did exactly that. He had only two scores of double-bogey or worse compared with 10 birdies for the weekend and was able to make big putts throughout his play to keep the momentum going.
Jakob Van de Flierdt of Neubiberg, Germany (73+72=145) and Austen Truslow of New Smyrna Beach, Florida (71+75=146) came in second and third, respectively. Rigel and Van de Flierdt were the only players in the division to score under par on the par four holes, averaging 3.95 on them for the tournament. Truslow was the leader after the first round and led the field with an incredible three-under performance on par five holes for the weekend.
This was Rigel's first win since the 54-hole challenge at Fleming Island in February. Fernandes is now completely in control of the boys 15-19 points lead with more than a 2,000 point cushion.
At the Reserve Course at Orange Lake Resort, the HJGT hosted a full field of 90 players across five eligible age divisions. The golf course was in great shape and everyone who attended appreciated the quality of the facility. Saturday revealed itself as a day of survival; the extremely tight par 71 layout combined with strong winds equaled a difficult scoring day for the field. However, with earlier tee times and milder breezes on Sunday, it made for some close finishes and a lot of spectacular play.
Rigel who grew up and picked his sport in Dubai at a young age of six, trains at the IMG Academy golf program in Bradenton, Florida - one of the leading sports academies in the world. In 2008, he was voted the ‘Most Improved Player of the Year’ by his academy.
Rigel is the younger son of Ivan and Renny Fernandes, of Ashoknagar parish in Mangalore. They have been residing in Dubai for the last 14 years.