09 Jun 17
Yorkshire amateur Simon Matthews celebrated his birthday by clinching a place in the Lombard Trophy Final in Portugal.
Matthews teamed up with Low Laithes Golf Club Professional Adrian Ambler to top the leaderboard at the regional qualifying event held at Moortown Golf Club.
The Ossett-based duo posted a six under par round of 65 at the Leeds course to win by just one shot ahead of Peter Raine/Paul King (Blackwell Grange Golf Club); Nick Ludwell/Dean Gatenby (Selby Golf Club); Jon Baldwin/Lewis Jeffels (Woolley Park Golf Club).
Matthews, who turned 48 on the day, admitted it was not the first time they had competed in the same event.
“We played in a junior competition at our local golf club which I won when I was 14 and he was 12 - that was the last time I’d played with him, so it was quite strange,” said the 11 handicapper.
“But it wasn’t a bad way to celebrate my birthday.
“I was just chuffed to get through to play with Adrian at Moortown, so to have actually won the event is unbelievable.
“But I was nervous about the weather beforehand, I thought it might be washout which would've been disappointing. We ended up getting the best of it.
“I’m now trying to get my mind around going to Portugal.”
Ambler and Matthews, a sales director for a plywood importer, will now head for the £41,000 National Pro-Am grand final taking place at the Vila Sol resort between September 21-22.
And both have played the Algarve venue before.
‘This is the first time I’ve been anywhere near this final, it’s the one competition I’ve always thought I’d want to play in,” said Ambler, who has been the Head Professional at Low Laithes for two years.
“So I’m delighted to get there. I know Portugal and this area well, including Vila Sol.
“We got the right side of the draw, it'd been raining all morning and just as we got the clubs out of the car, the sun came out and it stopped raining, that was a result.
“There was another deluge but we had a good front nine.
“But this has only been my third round of golf this year, I was almost a full time before player before moving to Low Laithes where I’m trying to get the club moving forwards, it’s buoyant at the moment.”
For more information or to see the full results from the Lombard Trophy PGA Regional Final at Moortown click here.