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Jonathan Caldwell claims inaugural Scandinavian Mixed; Clemson's Alice Hewson places third

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Jonathan Caldwell hit the shot of his life out of the rough on the 72nd hole at the Scandinavian Mixed. The journeyman pro wasn’t sure where he stood on the board at the time, but his approach to two feet set up a closing birdie that clinched his first European Tour title. As he walked off the 18th green, tournament co-host Annika Sorenstam gave him a fist pump after carding a closing 64. He called the moment “incredible.”

It was like that all week at the Scandinavian Mixed, where elite male and female players from around the world played alongside each other and against each other – from different tees –  for one trophy and one purse. Swedish legends Sorenstam and Henrik Stenson both hosted and played in the tournament.

The historic event saw a woman, Christine Wolf, tied for the lead after the first round. Swedish pro Caroline Hedwall took the outright lead at the midway point, and two men and two women shared the lead heading into Sunday.

“I think what they’ve done this week is fantastic,” said Caldwell. “I hope we have more weeks like this.”

England’s Alice Hewson was behind Caldwell on the course and, along with Spain’s Adrian Otaegui, posed a considerable threat down the stretch. Hewson, a former Clemson standout, had birdied three of her last four holes when she came into the 17th two shots behind Caldwell. Her birdie putt on the penultimate hole seemed to touch every bit of the cup but amazingly didn’t drop.

Meanwhile Otaegui, up ahead, had a birdie putt to win the tournament on the 18th and instead wound up three-putting for bogey. When Hewson failed to hole out for eagle from the fairway on the final hole, Caldwell’s 17-under total could not be touched.

Caldwell first joined the European Tour in 2009 but lost his card and bounced around on mini-tours and the Challenge Tour while holding a second job in a pro shop.

“It’s been a long road,” said an emotional Caldwell, “but finally, I’m here.”

Hewson finished solo third at the Scandinavian Mixed and was the only player in the field to break 70 all four rounds. The 23-year-old began her career on the LET with a victory at the Investec South African Women’s Open in March of 2020 and then watched that momentum grind to a halt when the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

“This has been an exceptional opportunity for women’s golf as a whole,” said a smiling Hewson, “for us to be on this kind of stage and to prove to everyone kind of how good women’s golf actually is.”

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original article link https://golfweek.usatoday.com/2021/06/13/jonathan-caldwell-scandinavian-mixed-annika-sorenstam-henrik-stenson/

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