The 2020 Major Champions Invitational presented by Golf Saudi lived up to its billing with an action-packed finish to both the boys and girls events at Lookout Mountain Golf Club in Arizona.
Zoe Campos, representing Team Lopez, entered the final day trailing overnight leader June Song of Australia by two shots. However, an eagle-three on the par-5 second drew level with her playing partner. Campos continued to pile on the pressure and covered the front-nine in just 32 shots.
A double-bogey on the 11th and a bogey on the 12th dragged her back to level with Song. However, it proved to be just a blip, as she showed her mettle by playing the final four holes in three-under to claim a two-shot victory.
“It’s a great start to the year,” said Campos. “The whole tournament has been amazing, with different players from lots of different countries, as well as high-profile professionals leading the teams.
“I think being two back to start the day helped because there was less pressure on me, but this will give me a lot of confidence going into the future now knowing I can close it out in a big event.”
Campos was also part of the winning team, captained by Nancy Lopez, who built on a two-shot lead entering the final round to claim a five-stroke victory over the all-Swedish team captained by Henrik Stenson.
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“I have no words to describe winning both events,” she added. “It’s just the coolest thing to be part of a team and playing for them – it gives you so much more motivation.”
In the Boys event, after 13 birdies and an eagle in the first two rounds, Yuki Moriyama continued his rich vein of form with four more birdies in the first seven holes on the final day.
He started the day with a two-shot lead and appeared to be cruising but a double at the 12th was the first sign of any weakness. He followed it with another dropped shot at the 13th but, just when he was in danger of losing his grip on the title, he bounced back with two straight birdies on 14 and 15 to put himself back in command.
Playing with Moriyama in the final group was Gustav Andersson from Sweden, who put up a spirited fight throughout. However, by the time the final group reached the 18th tee, Moriyama remained two shots ahead of the Swede and, when he hit the green with a towering 8-iron, his victory was effectively secured.
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“This feels great,” he said. “I had some scary moments but I told myself to relax. I’m so happy to win a big event like this, as I’ve not won in a while and it was important to get back in the winner’s circle. This week has been a new experience and I had so much fun.”
The tournament is the brainchild of six-time major winner Sir Nick Faldo who was full of praise for all who took part.
“We’ve seen some amazing golf being played and we’ve ended up with two fantastic individual winners in Yuki and Zoe, as well as the Team Winners captained by the lovely Nancy Lopez,” said the English legend. “Team Spieth had the opportunity to meet with Jordan earlier in the week, and Ariya Jutanugarn has been with us for the last couple of days, so I hope the players have all enjoyed it and will take away some valuable experiences.
“We’re already planning for next year’s event and it’s going to be bigger and better than ever before.”