This week sees The Welsh National PGA Championship Sponsored by Asbri played at Tenby Golf Club on Tuesday and Wednesday 5th and 6th July
Host PGA Professional Rhys Harry is relishing the opportunity to showcase a refreshed Tenby as the Pembrokeshire course welcomes the return of the Welsh National PGA Championship.
The course last hosted the prestigious championship, the oldest on The PGA’s national tournament schedule, in 2006 and has recently undergone major renovations including work to the clubhouse and practice areas.
That will be appreciated by a strong field including several former European Tour professionals such as defending champion Garry Houston, ex-Ryder Cup player Phillip Price and current Ladies European Tour ace Lydia Hall when they head to the South Wales coast for the Asbri Golf-supported event, which carries a prize fund of £9,500, on 5-6 July.
For Harry the championship itself represents a rare opportunity to test himself in competitive action.
The 37 year old struggles to find the time to compete while also fulfilling his two positions as club professional at Tenby and performance coach for the Wales junior squads.
“I’m hoping I get bitten by the bug again competing in this,” he admitted. “It’s easy to lose yourself when you’re so busy with work and not make the time to play.
“I get myself very busy with my two roles, although I’m lucky that as the season is winding down at the club, that is when I am busiest with the juniors – so they complement each other.
“We get some really good players coming out of the area, for example I recently coached Becky Harries who played in the Curtis Cup.”
Harry admitted the club is excited at the prospect of a prestigious event returning to the James Braid-designed layout.
“It’s been a few years since we last hosted the event purely due to the fact that we’ve been doing so much work around the place,” Harry confessed.
“We held the Ladies British Open Amateur Championship in 2012 and regularly hosted events in the years up to that, but made a conscious decision that we wanted to give ourselves a break and make improvements to ensure we could continue to do so.
“I think the players will find a tougher course than the one they experienced the last time we hosted the Welsh National in 2006.
“We’ve added a couple of par fours and I believe the PGA are going to stretch the course, making it really important to keep the ball on the fairway.
“We’re all really looking forward to it.”
Other players competing in the Welsh National PGA Championship include: Graham Farr (Worcester), Toby Hunt (St Mellons), Brian Lee (Parc Golf Club), Ceri Menai-Davis (The Shire), John Peters (Southerndown), Lee Rooke (Royal St David’s) and Matthew Tottey (North Wales Golf Club).