New Scottish winter series can tee up Junior Ryder Cup push

A new Junior Winter Series in Scotland is enhancing the chances of a tartan representation in events like the Junior Ryder Cup next year.

Blairgowrie's Gregor Graham won the boys' event at Macdonald Cardrona and will now be aiming to make home advantage count on Sunday
Blairgowrie's Gregor Graham won the boys' event at Macdonald Cardrona and will now be aiming to make home advantage count on Sunday

The series teed off at Macdonald Cardrona, near Peebles, a fortnight ago and continues on Sunday at Blairgowrie.

It is being supported by the Paul Lawrie Foundation and Stephen Gallacher Foundation, as well as the Barrie Douglas Foundation and Junior Tour Scotland.

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"What we've seen since golf restarted is a real appetite from the kids wanting to play," said Spencer Henderson, the Scottish national boys' coach. "We've seen that in the Junior Tour events and the Stephen Gallacher Foundation events over the past couple of months.

"They've been over-subscribed, so kids are wanting to play after what has been a really difficult year and I think this Winter Series is a fantastic opportunity for them.

"It will give the kids the chance to hit the ground running when we get to April and we've got the Scottish Boys and a few events that will count for the Order of Merit.

"That will help them get picked for events like the European Boys and Jacques Leglise and obviously the big one next year for the boys and girls is the Junior Ryder Cup.

"We want to give them the best opportunity starting in April not feeling as if they've had a full year off without competing."

Blairgowrie's Gregor Graham and Megan Docherty from Bishopbriggs were the two winners in the opening event, with Henderson expecting a similar high standard at Blairgowrie and also at Fortrose & Rosemarkie on 15 November..

"We've got a great bunch of youngsters at the moment like Ruben Lindsay, who led the qualifying at the Amateur Championship, and Cammy Adam and Gregor Graham, who has been playing really well," he added.

"For a number of them, it's their final year in junior golf and we want them to have a really big push.

"Giving them the opportunity to compete against each other over the winter will allow them to kick on next April before they go and play in some of the major English events and international events."

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