China golf prodigy Lin Yuxin returns for Clearwater Bay Open after securing Masters spot with breakthrough amateur win
The 17-year-old’s Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship victory in New Zealand also earns him place at The Open
Teenage Chinese prodigy Lin Yuxin will return to play the PGA Tour China’s Clearwater Bay Open in Hong Kong this week, days after his amateur golfing breakthrough at the Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship.
The 17-year-old’s victory in New Zealand was the biggest of his career and secured him spots at next season’s Masters and The Open, which will be held at Carnoustie.
“It was an amazing feeling, probably the best feeling I’ve ever had,” he said. “I’m just really excited that I made it to the Masters and The Open. I was a little speechless.
“I’m quite confident going to Clearwater Bay, and I hope I have another good week in Hong Kong.
“I’ll definitely be more confident after the win in New Zealand. I’ve built up a lot of confidence over the last three weeks.”
Lin, who finished seventh at the European Challenge Tour’s Hainan Open earlier in October, was the top amateur at the inaugural Clearwater Bay Open last year.
He was tied for 59th place but is confident he can improve on his previous showing, having carded rounds of 78, 65, 74 and 68.
“It’s a great golf course with beautiful views, but there are a couple of tough holes with tricky tee shots; especially 15, and 18 are pretty tough when they’re into the wind,” said Lin, who made the cut at the European Tour’s Shenzhen International in April aged just 16
“Last year I had a couple of bad holes in the first round. I had a triple bogey on 15 when I hit a pretty good tee shot, but [the ball] hit a sprinkler and I couldn’t find it.
“My long game definitely helps at Clearwater Bay, but you still need to have a good short game and make putts.”
Lin was one of four Chinese players in the top five at Royal Wellington Golf Club, securing a three-shot victory over compatriot Andy Zhang after closing with a six-under-par 65.
The pair had been tied for the lead with two holes to play but Lin pulled off an impressive finish with a birdie at the 17th and an eagle at the last.
Lin will also compete in the Australian Open later in November, having made his Japan Golf Tour debut in September.