Amateur club champions from all over the UK head for Ireland this week to take part in the International Pairs.
If your local golf club staged a qualifying round of the tournament - and hundreds did – two of your members will be representing you at the Nuremore, St Helen’s Bay or Mount Wolsey semi-final qualifiers.
It’s one of the few events in amateur golf, where everyone’s a winner, the club champions earning the right to a free two-day trip to Ireland for a chance at the major prize – to own the £25,000 Waterford Crystal trophy for a year.
The top 40 pairs who make the qualifying cut on Wednesday stay on for two more days (Thursday and Friday) and the 36-hole final over the Mount Wolsey course, designed by Irish golfing legend Christy O’Connor Jr.
Among those competing will be defending champions Martyn Ashcroft and Deen Graves from Torquay.
Martyn said: "We had a tremendous time in Ireland last year - the competition was superb, the golf courses were superb."
Ross Honey, International Pairs founder, added: "The Ryder Cup was a fantastic boost for golf across Europe and a tremendous advert for the game. Now through the International Pairs club golfers from the UK and Europe will be coming together to compete with the same passion and commitment as the professionals did at The Belfry.
"All those who are travelling to Ireland are already winners. It may not be the Ryder Cup, but for many this will be the pinnacle of their golfing achievement."
Among those also taking part are 37-year-olds David Peel from Llangibby, and Craig Spencer, from Caerphilly, who have already qualified for the final having won the The Celtic Manor club event and an earlier semi-final heat at St Helen’s Bay.
They received the added bonus of getting their prize from Ryder Cup hero Phillip Price, who represents The Celtic Manor on the European Tour.
They are pictured (Craig, left and David, right) with Phillip Price and Stuart Curtis of Worldwide Sport Marketing with the International Pairs Trophy for which all the golfers will compete this week.
Club entries are already being taken for the International Pairs in 2003. To register contact the event helpdesk on 02392 827000.