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England (South) Region

Royal Flush for Hunter

19 Apr 18

Long-standing Royal Winchester head professional Steven Hunter turned 50 at the turn of the year and is enthusiastic about starting a new chapter in his career.

He is immensely proud of the fact that he has been named the new captain of the PGA in Hampshire, with the opening Pro-Am of the season taking place at Barton-on-Sea on Wednesday.

“It is a huge honour to be chosen by my peers and I am really touched by it,” said Hunter. “It is my intention to play in at least 90% of the events.”

Hunter was only 17 when he turned professional but after a wayward shot shattered his ankle he gave up his plan to play on tour. He went on to join Royal Winchester as an Assistant Professional in 1987 before being promoted five years later.

He is looking forward to playing in the curtain-raiser on the delightful Hampshire coastal course along with vice-captain Ian Warwick. Backed by Be Wiser Insurance and new sponsors Peter Cooper Motor Group among others, over 40 events have been planned.

Explaining the need for a vice-captain, Hunter said: “It was approved by the committee as  I think a number of people have been a bit surprised at the demands placed on them.

"Not only do you want to fulfil your role as captain, you have your own club to think about as well, not to mention your own game.”

Among those scheduled to take part in the pro-am as the top three in last year’s Order of Merit, Adam Hickling, Martin Adams and Jon Barnes. Serial winner James Ablett has also been named in the field along with former Ryder Cup player Steve Richardson.

PGA in Hampshire secretary Roger Tuddenham said: “This keeps us as having the strongest independent PGA county programme in the country.

"We have added six new events and have tournaments all over the county.

"here are Pro-Ams and an individual stroke play event as well as Senior and Assistants days, plus a match play championship and an overseas trip to Portugal.

"We have something for everyone to play in and look forward to another busy and successful summer.”

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