Alison and Callum play Royal Troon just after The Open
Two young golfers from South Ayrshire enjoyed the opportunity of a lifetime as they played the famous Royal Troon Golf Club course just a day after the prestigious 145th Open finished, courtesy of the R&A and South Ayrshire Council.
24 hours earlier, cheers had been ringing around the grandstands as Henrik Stenson and Phil Mickleson battled it out for the coveted Claret Jug and now the teenagers had their chance to play.
Alison Malcolm (15) and Callum Irving (17) played the course with PGA Professional Richard Gordon from Golf South Ayrshire's Belleisle Park and Councillor Brian Connolly who is also an accomplished golfer.
The young pair were so caught up in the unique atmosphere, they did not keep score but both played really well! Guided round the course by Richard and Councillor Connolly, they received plenty of tips and advice and so confident were they in Alison's and Callum's abilities that they played off the same tees as the professionals on many of the holes.
Alison – who attends Prestwick Academy – has only been playing golf for 12 months and has seen her handicap plummet as her game improves. She plays for Prestwick St Cuthbert's and was thrilled to play the course just hours after her heroes. She said: "It was an unforgettable experience, getting to play the course and seeing the holes from the players' perspective, after watching them playing during The Open. Councillor Connolly, Callum and Richard were great company and Richard helped with a few tips on the way round the course. I would like to thank South Ayrshire Council and the R&A for giving me the chance to play Royal Troon."
Callum Irving is well on his way to becoming an excellent golfer with a handicap of 3. The ex-Belmont Academy pupil plays for Belleisle Golf Club and felt that playing the world famous course just after the tournament was inspirational.
South Ayrshire Council is currently investing £3.5 million in golf, which will hopefully encourage more people to take up the sport. If The Open has inspired you, we have some of the best municipal courses in the country, visit www.golfsouthayrshire.com for more information. You can also get more info on golfing events on Facebook at Golf South Ayrshire and SAC Events and Festivals.