NANJING, China – Sweden claimed the gold medal in the mixed team golf competition at the 2014 Youth Olympic Games in a dramatic playoff over Korea on Aug. 26 at the Zhongshan International Golf Club.
Marcus Kinhult, who won the silver medal in last week’s individual men’s competition, and Linnea Strom earned the title when the 18-year-old Kinhult, No. 6 in the latest World Amateur Golf Ranking™, holed an 8-foot birdie putt on the par-4 18th hole.
This came after the two teams tied at 16-under 272 in the 54-hole competition. The first two rounds featured a better-ball format, but scores from each player were counted in the final round.
Italy took the bronze medal in a playoff over 36-hole leader Denmark after both teams finished at 14-under 274.
“I feel so happy and proud winning the gold medal,” said Kinhult. “It’s fun to play as a team and is more enjoyable than individual games. To be part of the team, to be part of the Olympics and to win the gold medal has been so much fun.”
The Korean team of women’s individual gold medalist Soyoung Lee and Eun Ho Youm trailed Sweden by one stroke going to the final hole, but Lee rolled in a 12-foot birdie putt to force the playoff.
“Second place is a good achievement,” said Lee. “We are very happy to win the silver medal although we lost the playoff.”
The Italian team of men’s individual gold medalist Renato Paratore, No. 5 in the WAGR, and Virginia Elena Carta edged Denmark’s John Paul Pultz Pinnerup Axelsen and Emily Kristine Pedersen by a stroke on the first extra hole in the bronze-medal playoff.
“We are a little bit disappointed, we were hoping to win, but we are OK with the bronze medal,” said Paratore.
This was the first time golf was contested in the Youth Olympic Games, which began four years ago. The Games are open to athletes ages 15-18. The USA did not send players for the individual or team competition.
Golf makes its return to the Olympic program for the first time in 112 years in 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.