Loughrey brothers in St Andrews bid
WRAG Barn duo Ben and Josh Loughrey take part in the prestigious St Andrews Links Trophy today.
The pair will both tackle the old and new course at St Andrews as they bid for victory in a tournament previously competed in by the likes of Ernie Els, Lee Westwood, Trevor Immelman, Geoff Ogilvy, Padraig Harrington and 1997 winner Justin Rose.
Ben, who last week finished tied eighth in the Scottish Amateur Open, says it would be the pinnacle of his career so far to win the event.
“If there was a ‘major’ in amateur golf then this would be it,” said Ben, who played both courses with his brother Josh on Wednesday and Thursday. “It would be the highlight of my career if I was to win it. It is a very strong international field so the competition will be stiff.”
The weather is set to play a major part with rain predicted all weekend but Ben won’t be fazed by the wet, adding: “It’s all about the mindset really. We have all the equipment these days so it’s all in the mind. I’ll just get on with it and play my game.
“I am playing a bit better now than I have been. I worked on some things during the practice rounds and I would say my short game is as good as it has been for some while now.”
Meanwhile, younger brother Josh has just returned from Australia where he played in the Pennants Series and enjoyed a seventh and an 11th place finish in the Riversdale Cup and Tasmanian Open respectively.
“I got back from Australia two weeks ago and I loved every minute of it,” said Josh. “The standard of golf was amazing, it was a great experience.
“I was very happy with how I played. I finish seventh at Riversdale and 11th in Tasmania so I was pleased with that.”
On his return from Australia he was due to play in the Scottish Amateur Open but due to an administration error was not entered into the tournament. Josh ended up caddying in the event for brother Josh but is now eager to get back to playing at St Andrews having qualified via the reserve list.
He added: “I expected to play in the Scottish Open but something went wrong with my entry so in the end I caddied for my brother Ben and he finished eighth. It was good but obviously I would rather have played.
“I was fourth on the reserve list for this event and luckily I have got in. I play off +2.8 and was on the reserve list so it just shows how high the standard is here.
“I am really looking forward to it and am really hoping to make the cut. If I can do that and be in a good position then who knows.”
Both play the new course today followed by the old course on Friday. If they make the cut then they face two further rounds on Sunday.