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Roberts backs himself for amateur repeat

Last year top amateur Jevon Roberts had nothing to lose and everything to gain heading into the Bermuda Open.

But this time around, the complete opposite is the case, as the 32-year-old puts his amateur title on the line at Port Royal Golf Club next week.

Roberts capped a memorable debut in the 2013 tournament by coming from behind to beat Scott Barnett, his fellow Port Royal clubmate, in a play-off for the amateur championship.

“Fortunately, I played well on the last day and Scott did not,” Roberts said.

The top amateur intends to enter the 72-hole tournament with the same approach as he did at the previous event.

“Last year I went in it to just play well and knew if I did I would be near the top,” Roberts said. “This year I am going to go in with the same approach and hopefully give myself another shot at it.

“There is nothing really any different from last year, other than maybe I have a little bit more confidence knowing I can win it.”

Roberts, who also won the amateur title at last year's Bacardi Par 3 World Championship, has spent quality time ironing out the kinks in his game in the lead-up to the tournament, which runs from Monday to Thursday.

“I have had some good practice, so now I am just hoping to take it from the range to the course, which is always the tricky part,” he said. “I am pretty happy with the way I am hitting it.”

Roberts will have his work cut out for him in an amateur field boasting the likes of Jarryd Dillas, the four-times Bermuda Amateur Match Play champion, and Mark Phillips, who captured the amateur title at the Gosling's Invitational.

“It makes the field much better when you have quality players playing,” Roberts said. “It is going to be a pretty good event.”

Roberts enjoys playing in familiar surroundings at Port Royal, but he admits that playing at a home course also has its disadvantages.

“You always have a slight advantage playing on your home course because you know where to miss and where not to,” he said. “But sometimes it can put more pressure on you because you know where and where not to miss.

“It is kind of like a double-edge sword: it can work in your favour but sometimes it can put added pressure on you. You just have to deal with it to the best of your ability.”

Jevon Roberts is the defending amateur champion at the Bermuda Open (photo by Glenn Tucker)

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Published March 22, 2014 at 9:00 am (Updated March 22, 2014 at 1:52 am)

Roberts backs himself for amateur repeat

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