Island win sets Gregory up for Trophy call-up
Scott Gregory celebrated his maiden victory on foreign soil with his first call-up for a Great Britain & Ireland squad.
The Corhampton ace was part of a four-man team that won the Kiawah Island Invitational Pro-Am in the USA – setting a record points total for the event in the process.
He also lifted the best gross trophy in the South Carolina resort’s Friendship Cup, after rounds of 66 and 71 over the Ocean Course – where Rory McIlroy won the USPGA title in 2012 – and the Osprey respectfully.
On his return from the States, Gregory – who came runner-up at the recent Spanish Amateur Championship – was handed a further boost.
A letter from GB&I captain Craig Watson was delivered to his home in Waterlooville naming him in the 13-man squad for this summer’s St Andrew’s Trophy match against Europe.
That will be played at Prince’s, Sandwich, in July.
And the 21-year-old will be hoping to utilise some of the tips picked up playing alongside European Tour pro David Dixon at Kiawah Island for the challenge ahead.
‘Dicko (Dixon) and I practiced together on the days we weren’t playing and I was able to pick his brains. That will help massively going forward,’ said Gregory.
‘He had lots of great advice for me and was willing to answer any questions I had about the pro game and life on tour.
‘David has also won the Q-School so knows all about playing under real pressure to win a tour card.
‘Some of the insights he gave me from his own experiences I think will really help me.
‘Being able to spend 10 days in the company of a European Tour pro is something that you can’t put a price on.
‘Throughout the week I think I gained some very valuable information about the courses, the grasses and the way golf is played in that part of the world.
‘And I’ve found a new love for the Ocean Course – so I have five years to become good enough to play in the USPGA, when it returns there after Rory’s victory five years ago!’
The England A international will spend the next fortnight preparing for the opening 72-hole event of the domestic season, when the Selborne Salver is played at Blackmoor GC (Saturday, April 16) – followed by the trip up to North Hants for the Hampshire Hog 24 hours later.
Gregory said: ‘I have decided to skip this year’s Berkhamsted Trophy at the weekend as I have already played quite a bit of competitive golf and want to concentrate on my preparation for the Hog and Salver.
‘Getting called up for the St Andrew’s Trophy squad is the icing on the cake following the England team’s victory in the Costa Ballena Quadrangular Match and the Spanish Amateur.
‘Now I want to concentrate on doing well enough to be picked for Prince’s.’