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The Open Regional Qualifying: Simon Head, Michael Lawrence, Daniel Byrne and Mark Collins qualify for Final Qualifying on July 1

By Kevin Redsull
Henry Saunders, of Rochester & Cobham Park. Picture: Simon Hildrew

Chatham-based professional Simon Head made his local knowledge count in Monday’s Open Championship Regional Qualifying at The London Club.

The 26-year-old, who works as an assistant in the professional’s shop at the Ash club, fired a two-under-par 70 to finish joint second in the field of 126 players who were looking to make next Tuesday’s Final Qualifying for the Open Championship at Royal Liverpool on July 17-20.

Head and Essex-based Brett Taylor (Brett Taylor Golf) finished one shot behind amateur Freddie Price from Royal Blackheath who led the 12 qualifiers. They also included two more Kent amateurs, Michael Lawrence (Sundridge Park) and Daniel Byrne (Dartford), who shot level par 72.

Two other Kent players made the Reserve list, Greg Hazelby (Prince’s) and Jack Colegate (Deangate Ridge), after shooting one-over-par 73s.

Prince's Nick Drane. Picture: Simon Hildrew

Among the Kent players who missed out were Richard Wallis (North Foreland) with 74, Michael Saunders (Dartford) with 75, and Nick Drane (Prince’s) on 76.

Meanwhile at East Sussex National GC, Langley Park club professional Paul Sherman, who previously held the same position at Ashford GC, was among the 12 qualfiers.

Sherman finished joint fourth on two-under-par 70, three shots behind the winner, Clemens Dvorak of Austria. Sherman will be joined in Final Qualifying by Chart Hills amateur Mark Collins who finished fifth on one-under-par 71.

Max Brackley (Manston Golf Centre) made the Reserve list on one-over-par 73, but among the local players who missed out were Steve Mitchell (Pentland Golf) and Rudi l’Anson (Eltham Warren) on 74, Jamie Harris (Nevill) on 75 and Elliott Owens (Hever Castle) on 76.

Richard Wallis of North Foreland. Picture: Simon Hildrew

Tuesday’s Final Qualifying, where three players will qualify for the Open from each course, will take place at Sunningdale New, Woburn, Gailes Links and Hillside.

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