Matteo, 16, to turn pro

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Matteo Manassero, 16, has confirmed he will turn professional after playing in The Masters at Augusta next month.

Sixteen-year-old Italian Matteo Manassero has confirmed he will turn professional after he makes history at the Masters at Augusta next month where he will become the youngest-ever competitor in this traditional season-opening major
The reigning British amateur champion, who finished a brilliant 13th in The Open last July, said at a golf show in his home town. Verona ,that he will make his professional debut at the Italian Open in Turin on May 6-9.
Not 17 until April 19, Manassero played with Tom Watson and Sergio Garcia in the first two rounds at Turnberry and his two over par total of 282 was only one outside the Open record by an amateur, set by England’s Iain Pyman at Sandwich in 1993 and matched by Tiger Woods at Lytham three years later.
He has made the halfway cut in five out of six appearances on the European Tour so far and will be allowed seven invitations to events in a bid to avoid the qualifying school at the end of the season.
Manassero is one of four teenagers in The Masters. United States champion An Byeong-hun, the son of two Olympic table tennis medallists, turned 18 last September and is the same age as his compatriot Han Chang-won, winner of the inaugural Asian Amateur crown, and Ryo Ishikawa, already in the world’s top 50 and a multiple winner on the Japanese Tour.

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