Winners: Thailand (Thongchai Jaidee and Phachara Khongwhatmai)
For the third edition of GolfSixes, the two-day 16-team event moved to Portugal and Oitavos Dunes. The sixth hole was a par-three over a swimming pool and it was the Thai pair of Thongchai Jaidee and Phachara Khongwhatmai who ended up jumping in the pool in celebration. Jaidee made a hole-in-one there on the first day to finish top of their group and eliminate defending champions Ireland (Paul Dunne and Gavin Moynihan).
Then, after beating Scotland and Spain in the knockout stages, Thailand beat England in the final in a nearest-the-pin playoff at the same hole. With the match tied playing the last in regulation, Tom Lewis missed from five feet for the victory. On the first playoff hole, Paul Waring again had the best tee shot, finishing seven feet away, but Lewis again missed the putt.
When they all returned to the tee, it was Khongwhatmai — at 20, fully 29 years younger than Jaidee, and without a European Tour title to his name compared to Jaidee’s eight — who finished closest to the hole, just three feet away. “I’m lucky today,” said Jaidee. “We played well today but I think the teamwork was very important. Thank you to my partner, Phachara.”
England beat Sweden in the quarter-finals and then Italy in the semis before falling to Thailand. “I’m gutted, I’m genuinely gutted,” said Lewis. “We played so many good matches but unfortunately didn’t make the putts at the end.”
Two women’s teams took part, Meghan MacLaren and Florentyna Parker for England finishing with only one tied match, while Germany’s Esther Henseleit and Laura Fuenfstueck lost out on a quarter-final spot via a playoff against the Australian men who they had beaten earlier in the day.