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Beverly Country Club to Host Western Amateur
An international field of 156 amateurs will gather at on Chicago's southwest side at Beverly Country Club, July 28-August 2, to compete in the 112th Western Amateur.
Jordan Niebrugge, of Mequon, Wis., a Milwaukee suburb, will defend the title he won last August at the Alotian Club in Little Rock, Ark. On the strength of that victory, the 6-foot, 4-inch Oklahoma State junior earned a berth on the 2013 U.S. Walker Cup team. In April, Niebrugge played in the Masters.
"The Western Golf Association is very excited to host the world's finest amateur golfers at one of America's most storied championship courses in our home market of Chicago," said Vince Pellegrino, the WGA's senior vice president of tournaments. "We are confident this year's Western Amateur is going to be a tremendous championship. As always, we invite everyone to come out to see many of the game's top college players and the future stars of the PGA Tour."
This will be the first time since 1930 that the Donald Ross-designed Beverly CC has hosted the Western Amateur, but the course was the site of three Western Opens, won by Arnold Palmer (1963), Jack Nicklaus (1967) and Hugh Royer (1970).
Other notable Beverly champions include Chicago's own Chick Evans, who won the 1910 Western Open at Beverly; celebrated amateur Francis Ouimet, who won his second U.S. Amateur at Beverly in 1931; and Luke Donald, now a Chicago-area resident, who won the 2000 Chicago Open at Beverly during his freshman year at Northwestern.
Founded in 1899, the Western Amateur annually boasts one of the strongest fields in amateur golf. It is the world's third-oldest amateur championship behind only the British Amateur (1885) and U.S. Amateur (1895), and traditionally attracts players from around the U.S. and more than a dozen countries.
The Western Amateur champion must play 72 holes of stroke play and finish in the top 16 to qualify for match play. He then must win four matches over two days, meaning that over a five-day period he would have played approximately 144 holes, depending on whether the matches go into extra holes or end early.
Past champions include Nicklaus, Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Ben Crenshaw, Curtis Strange and Justin Leonard. The legendary Bobby Jones won the stroke-play portion of the tournament in 1920.
The international field already includes players from seven countries, with more expected to be represented. Players from Australia, Colombia, England, France, Germany, Norway and Taiwan have committed.
"The quality and depth of the Western Amateur field always is outstanding, and we expect to maintain the same level of excellence again this year," Pellegrino said. "Beverly is a classic Donald Ross course, and we expect the best amateurs in the world to embrace the challenge it presents."
Beverly's course measures 7,016 yards from the championship tees and plays to a par of 71. The club is rightfully proud of its caddie program, which has sent 303 caddies to college on the WGA-administered Evans Scholars program. The club currently has 25 caddies in college, with seven more heading to universities next year.
"Caddies are an integral part of the history and tradition of golf, and the Evans Scholar program is part of the fabric of Beverly," said Beverly Country Club president William Flagler. "The club is very proud to be associated with such a fine organization as the Evans Scholars Foundation."
For more about the Western Amateur, visit http://www.thewesternamateur.com/site/c.lnKNKOOsHqE/b.5759521/k.BD46/Home.htm.