Amateur R&A

Canadian Terrill Samuel wins R&A Senior Amateur Championship

The R&A

Mike McCoy and Terrill Samuel were crowned winners of the R&A Senior Amateur and Women’s Senior Amateur championships at Royal Dornoch.

With both championships played concurrently for the first time, McCoy was almost able to enjoy a lap of honour in the final round of the Senior Amateur.

Samuel, a member at Weston Golf Club in Toronto, handled the tough conditions at the renowned venue in the Scottish Highlands better than her competitors to join McCoy as Senior Women’s Amateur champion.

Samuel is just the third Canadian winner after Alison Murdoch in 2007 and Diane Williams in 1994. McCoy is the second consecutive Iowa golfer to lift the trophy, following close friend and fellow Des Moines native Gene Elliott. The 2021 champion was on hand to spray his next door neighbour with champagne when McCoy holed out on the 18th green.

McCoy began the final round with a nine-shot lead, the only player in red figures on five-under-par. He extended his lead to 12 shots after just four holes and was never in any danger of being overtaken. He had the luxury of an eight-over 78 in strong cross winds to post a three-over 283 total and win by seven shots over fellow American Lee Porter.

“Up until the end I played some of the best golf of my life in this wind,” said McCoy. “My round yesterday (one-under 69) was one of the best of my life.

“I knew I had a big lead and I was maybe protecting it a bit today. I was patient all week, which was key. I probably lost a little bit on the back nine today but I just kept my chin up. I grinded hard at the start and when I made the turn after nine I knew I had a lot (of shots) to work with.”

The 59-year-old, who will lead next year’s Walker Cup team for the United States of America at St Andrews, credited Elliott for inspiring him to victory. 

He added, “After Gene won, I definitely made it a goal this year to win this championship. I thought if I worked hard maybe it would become my turn. I worked hard over the winter, played well this Spring and was in decent form before I got here. It’s a big honour to have won this championship on such a great course, in tough conditions against such a strong field.”

Samuel won the battle of attrition that was the women’s championship in the first year in which The R&A staged both the senior men’s and women’s championships together on the same course.

Joint 36-hole leader with Peru’s Anna Morales, Samuel struggled to a third round 85 in the strong winds that sent scores sky rocketing. However, the 61-year-old English-born Canadian never gave up. She returned a closing three-over 75 for a 22-over 309 total to defeat 2019 champion Lara Tennant by two shots. Emma Brown from England was third.

Samuel said, “It’s unbelievable to do win on this course, in such tough conditions. I played poorly on the front nine yesterday, but today I made a great start and that helped me mentally. It made me hang in there and I just battled hard over the back nine.

“This is my biggest win in golf because I was born in the UK. I was born in Twickenham and moved to Canada with my parents when I was two months old. I used to come over every year and spend time with my grandparents in Cornwall and play amateur events over here so it feels like a home win.

“I know Diane Williams, so to get my name on the trophy with hers and become the third Canadian winner is a huge honour.”


The R&A and the USGA modernize Amateur Status Rules

Rules of Golf – USGA and R&A announce modernization to Rules of Amateur Status

The USGA and The R&A have announced proposals for significant changes to the Rules of Amateur Status that govern the game worldwide.

These proposals result from a modernization initiative that has identified a clear need to bring the Rules up to date to reflect today’s global amateur game and ensure that the Rules are easier to understand and apply.

The proposed Rules, along with explanations to key changes, have been posted on and and the organizations are now inviting feedback from golfers and stakeholders. Comments will be accepted through Friday, March 26, with the new Rules scheduled to be adopted on January 1, 2022.

A comprehensive review of the Rules of Amateur Status began in late 2017, focusing on three main goals: to ensure the Rules are in the best interests of the game, reflect the modern game, and are easily understood and applied.

This review reaffirmed amateur golf’s important position in the game and the value in maintaining amateur status Rules to safeguard all the ways golf is played and enjoyed.

The result is a set of Rules that redefine the distinction between amateur and professional golf and provide a condition of eligibility – amateur status – for amateurs who compete in golf competitions.

As part of the modernization effort, it is proposed that the new Rules will identify only three acts that will result in a golfer losing their amateur status:

To achieve this simplified approach, the following key changes are proposed:

“Golf is unique in its broad appeal to both recreational and competitive golfers,” said Craig Winter, USGA Senior Director, Rules of Golf and Amateur Status. “We understand and value how important amateur status is, not only to those who compete at the highest level of the amateur game, but for the millions of golfers at every age and skill level who enjoy competitive events at their home courses. These updates should help simplify these Rules and ensure the health of the amateur game.”

Grant Moir, Director of Rules at The R&A, said, “The Rules of Amateur Status play an important role in protecting the integrity of our self-regulating sport but the code must continue to evolve. This is particularly so in relation to the modern elite amateur game, where many of the players need financial support to compete and develop to their full potential, and the proposed new Rules will give much greater scope for this.”

“Today marks another important step in the process to modernize the Rules of Amateur Status,” said Akash Patel, Rules and Competitions Manager at Golf Canada. “A great amount of work has gone into making the Rules easier to understand and apply for both the recreational and competitive golfer. We are confident that the proposed changes reflect the modern game and will help with our continued efforts to grow the game.”

The proposed new Rules are accompanied by an overview document and explanations that detail the rationale for why changes are being proposed and, in some instances, why they have stayed the same.

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