Academy prospects go for golfing gold in Australia

Academy prospects go for golfing gold in Australia

January 14 2013

Three talented students from St Andrews Links Golf Academy are preparing to tee-off at the Australian Youth Olympics this week.

Bradley Neil, Ewan Scott and Lauren Whyte, who all receive instruction from the St Andrews Links Golf Academy instruction staff, have been selected for Team GB at the Australian Youth Olympic Festival.

Ewan and Bradley will both be representing Team GB in the men’s team event as well as in the individual stroke play format. Both enjoyed trophy-laden seasons in 2012 with Ewan lifting the Faldo Series Europe Grand Final and Bradley finishing top points scorer in the Home Internationals.

16-year-old Lauren, who is the reigning Scottish Girls’ Champion, will take part in the GB women’s team for the four- round tournament, which has no cut.

The golf event will take place over the Twin Creeks course on the outskirts of Sydney with Academy student Ewan Scott, one of Scotland’s brightest amateur prospects, warming up for the Winter Olympics in some style Down Under.

Ewan finished fifth in the prestigious 2013 Australian Master of the Amateurs – the No 1 Amateur event in Australia. Now in its 16th successful year, the Australian Master of the Amateurs is considered by many of the world’s leading professional and amateur golfers to be the finest Amateur championship in the world.

The 17-year-old has been in Australia with his family ahead of representing Team GB alongside fellow Academy students Bradley and Lauren, who are both coached by Kevin Hale.

Ewan is taking a year away from his education to test his golf globally in 2013, before starting his studies at the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga (UTC) in America in August.

The former Madras College pupil, who works with Director of Instruction Steve North at the Links, has started 2013 on a positive note with his high place finish at The Royal Melbourne Golf Club.

Scott fired a three-under-par total for the 72-hole event, six shots behind Queensland winner Viraat Badhwar.

Scott posted rounds of 68, 71, 73 and 73 to finish as the leading overseas player in the 54-man field, with a leap up the World Amateur Golf Ranking almost guaranteed this week.

Director of Instruction Steve North said: “Ewan’s result in the Australian Master of the Amateurs was fantastic and shows he is continuing his great form from 2012 into 2013.

“He was competing against a top-class field with some of the world’s leading amateurs but it’s no surprise after he won the Golf Data Lab Scottish Youths Championship and the Faldo Series Europe Grand Final (Under-18s) as well as coming out on top of the Scottish Hydro Boys’ Order of Merit last year.

“Ewan’s a great guy, dedicated to his golf and I hope he continues his good form and really enjoys the opportunity to represent Team GB at the Australian Youth Olympics.

“Everyone at the Academy was thrilled when we heard Bradley and Lauren had been selected too. It’s a tremendous achievement to have all three selected to represent their country against some of the most talented young golfers from across the globe.

“All three enjoyed fantastic seasons in 2012 and deserve the recognition they have received. Everyone at the Academy will be paying close attention to the Youth Olympics to see how they all fare and look forward to welcoming them back to St Andrews."

As well as the men’s and women’s individual events Team GB will take part in a team event against other nations including Argentina, Australia, Japan, Korea, China, New Zealand and Chinese Taipei. The golf event will take place from January 17-20.

The golfers are among 120 Team GB athletes who will compete in 11 Olympic sports at the AYOF: badminton, basketball, diving, golf, gymnastics, hockey, rowing, shooting, triathlon, weightlifting and wrestling.

Altogether, the event will attract approximately 1700 athletes aged 13-19 from 30 nations competing across 17 Olympic sports in many of the venues used to host the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games.