Keighley Golf Club PGA Professional Andy Rhodes and member Liam Blacka followed in the footsteps of golfing greats as they cleared up the individual and team awards at the TaylorMade-adidas Amateur Championship final staged at Trump Turnberry Resort.
Rhodes and Blacka saw off the challenge of 19 other amateur and TGI Golf Partner pairings from across the UK and Ireland over the world-famous Aisla Course.
In order to qualify for the grand final, TGI Golf Partners staged qualifiers at their respective clubs, with TMaG supplying prizes for those finishing in first, second and third. The winner of each qualifier across the UK and Ireland was automatically placed on a national leaderboard, where the top 20 players, along with their TGI Golf Professional travelled to Scotland’s west coast.
The event, now in its sixth year, was summed up perfectly by Carrickfergus Golf Club member Tommy Black, who described the day as “the best 50p I ever spent’.
He said: “For the price of entering a monthly medal, I have received the initial medal prize, played the Ailsa Course at Turnberry, been put up in the hotel, wined and dined and received a new golf shirt…all for 50p.
“It’s been a superb day, the whole event has been run excellently, it’s been a truly exceptional experience.”
From the PGA Professional’s point of view, winning Pro Andy Rhodes added: “Events like these are a great way for us as PGA Pros to give added value to our club members. It’s nice to give the members opportunities like this to come and play some of the world’s most famous courses. From the moment we arrived last night it has been perfect and winning the event has topped it off.”
Amateur champion Blacka, a 28-year-old gas engineer from Oxhenhope, who plays off 15, took the final qualifying berth on the national leaderboard, but turned the tables to finish top of the pile.
“I entered the medal at Keighley as I normally would, it was only afterwards that I realised a trip to Turnberry for the grand final was on the cards,” said Blacka. “It was quite a nerve-wracking experience waiting for the cut-off date and seeing if I would make it. Luckily I just crept in.
“It’s been an amazing experience, Turnberry is quite easily the best course I’ve ever played, the history and prestige around the place has made it truly memorable.”
As well as lifting the trophy Blacka will travel to the prestigious Wentworth Golf Club to visit TaylorMade’s Performance Lab where he’ll receive a custom fitted set of TaylorMade irons, as well as a round of golf at the club’s famous West Course.
Simon Gilbert, TaylorMade-adidas Golf Regional Marketing Manager, who organised the event, said: “TaylorMade-adidas Golf are very proud to host this event in conjunction with the TGI Golf Partnership. It is integral that we support the green grass professional and in turn we are connecting with end consumers. I would like to thank the 100 clubs that participated in the qualifying events and congratulate the 20 amateurs and their professionals on qualifying for the final. TMaG are thrilled to offer amateurs and their professionals the opportunity to play the final on such an iconic golf course.”
TGI Golf www.tgigolf.com