When the Challenge Tour makes its first visit of the year to Sweden this week for the NCC Open it will provide fond memories for Per Goran Nyman. A year ago at Soderasens he was the man of the moment, coming from nowhere to take the title.
It provided a number of firsts for the 26-year-old Swede from Vaxjo. It was his first Challenge Tour event of the year, the first time he had led going into the final round, his first Challenge Tour victory, and it provided an entry into the following week’s Moroccan Open, his first main tour outing.
“It was my week,” he says. “I was surprised when the press wanted to speak to me after the third round when I was joint leader with Mikael Lundberg. In the final round when I made good putts on the second and third holes I felt in contention. I didn’t make any big mistakes and finished tied with Thomas Norret of Denmark and Klas Eriksson, who is from the same club as me.
“It was strange going into the playoff with Klas because he was someone who I had looked up to all my golfing life. Thomas went out at the first extra hole with a bogey and both Klas and I hit good tee shots at the second, which has water in front of the green.
“Unfortunately, Klas flew the green with his approach, finished in a bad lie and took a double-bogey six. I just wanted to get over the water and my ball finished on the fringe. In the end I knew I could take two putts for bogey and still win.”
Nyman defends this week while Eriksson will also be at Soderasens so an action replay is a distinct possibility. Also playing is fellow Swede, Henrik Stenson, ranking leader prior to the Danish Open 2000.