02 Aug 17
Brokenhurst Manor Golf Club captain Richard Walker admitted it will be ‘unbelievable’ to play in a Morocco final after winning the SkyCaddie PGA Pro-Captain Challenge regional final.
Walker teamed up with the Hampshire’s club's PGA professional Kevin Saunders to win the event at Hayling Golf Club.
The event used stableford fourball betterball scoring and the Brokenhurst Manor duo pipped Ross Whitelock and Richard Thompson, of St Mellion Golf Resort, by one point after carding a 10 under par round of 71.
Ten-handicapper Walker and Saunders will now play in the £22,000 Morocco final which will be held between November 21-22 at Mazagan Beach Resort, Casablanca.
“It’s an unbelievable prize, we’re really looking forward to getting there and playing in the final,” said 69-year-old captain Walker (pictured left (below) with Kevin Saunders)
“We knew beforehand what the prize was and that was a real incentive. It was close at the end but it was brilliant for us, fantastic.”
Walker, a retired oil industry worker, has been a member at Brokenhurst Manor for 13 years.
“You’re always hopeful going into the competition, and it’s a great opportunity for the captain to play with the pro, you’d hope you have a chance but Kevin played extremely well,” he added.
Former European Tour pro Saunders admitted that this is the first time he has reached a PGA national final.
“I’ve never really come close in this event, but this year I was in the PGA National Pro-Am qualifier and at one point thought I might be in with a chance of winning, but it didn’t happen. So to finally make a final is great, you see other pros doing it and it’s something I’ve wanted to achieve,” he said.
“I’ve told Richard that we’re not going there to finish ninth! So once it’s sunk in we’ll be looking to what we can do in Morocco.
“I made eight birdies and it was really solid with Richard picking up two at the 10th and the 15th. I was disappointed only to make a par at the second hole where most of the pros had been making fours. But then we were out in five under.
“We’d made so many birdies I wasn't really keeping score, you don’t get that feeling often but it’s nice when you get it. I knew we were close, but I didn’t want to tempt fate by adding it all up.”