The 18-year-old lifted the title for the first time yesterday afternoon, on his home course at Grouville, after he defeated La Moye’s Mark Tostevin, the defending champion, two up.In a keenly-fought and nip-and-tuck sporting match, Guelpa’s winning score was the only time either of the golfers had gone two-up in the 18-hole final.Guelpa said: ‘It was tight throughout and although I felt I could have played better I managed to take my chances when they came along.’It was one of those matches when I was ahead by one hole and then Mark would get back and then he would go ahead by one hole.
I sank a couple of crucial putts at key moments and that helped me through in the end.’Both finalists are in Jersey’s inter-insular team to face Guernsey this weekend and although Tostevin lost his title he has another chance again next year while Guelpa moves out of the age group.Starting at the tenth hole, Guelpa took the lead following a four.
Two holes later the scores were level as Tostevin won with a five.
Tostevin’s par-three at the 16th gave him the advantage for the first time only for Guelpa to win the 18th with par to turn all square.Both players carded birdie fours to halve the first (the tenth hole played) before another three from Tostevin at the next hole put him one-up for the second time.Three holes later the pendulum swung in Guelpa’s favour again after he won the fourth with a birdie two and the fifth in four after Tostevin got out of a greenside bunker well but missed his putt.The next three holes were shared again with Guelpa making par after playing an excellent shot from the edge of the bunker, while having to stand in it, at the penultimate hole.Tostevin had to win the final hole of the match to force a sudden-death play-off.
Guelpa played his iron shot safely down the middle of the fairway.
Tostevin pulled out his driver for the first time, looking for a big hit, only to find the thick rough on the left.
He chipped out but plugged his ball in the bunker with his next shot and his hopes of retaining the title finally slipped from his grasp.Guelpa will play Guernsey’s champion at L’Ancresse in Guernsey next month.