Playoff success for Newport GC youngster Morris in Raven Scratch Open
Competitors from as far afield as Cheshire, Leicestershire and Carmarthenshire made the journey to The Herefordshire Golf Club for the fourth annual playing of the Raven Scratch Open.
Enjoying perfect conditions, 61 competitors from twenty clubs vied for a top spot on a course turned out in impeccable order by Head Greenkeeper, Jeremy Brown and his team.
Raven Scratch Open Champion
Only one player could prevail to call themselves the Raven Scratch Open champion and that privilege went to Newport GC member, Callam Morris.
Playing in the tournament for the first time, plus 2 handicapper Morris fired three birdies in his final five holes to record a one-over-par gross 71, tying the score of local scratch handicapper Morgan Radziejowski.
The Herefordshire Golf Club
The players made their way to the first hole for a sudden-death playoff where Morris triumphed by making a par 4, as an unlucky Radziejowski three-putted from long range for bogey. Burghill Valley GC member Matthew Harrison made up the top-3 (gross 72), finishing his round with three consecutive birdies but falling one shot short of the playoff.
Herefordshire Golf Club member, Ross Adams was one of only two players to beat par all day in the handicap section. Playing off a handicap of 10, Adams’ 68 net was enough to win on a card countback over former member Jason Griffiths (The Leicestershire Golf Club, handicap 7).
Two members tied for third place with level par net 70’s with Club Captain Tommy Hughes (11 handicap) prevailing over in-form 6-handicapper, Jonathan Curtis on a card countback.
Afterwards, a delighted Morris (pictured) revealed the secret to his success was in prioritising accuracy off the tee. Learning from his practice round earlier in the week, he only took his driver once during his round, preferring to play for the fairways with irons from the tee.
Later in the year, Morris will compete in the EuroPro Tour qualifying school before deciding on whether to turn professional.
Raven winner 2020 – Callam Morris
Organiser Jonathan Devereux commented that this year’s tournament was the most successful to date:
“We are thrilled to have a full field for the event which is still in its infancy but already gaining awareness at a national level. To have over half of the elite field made up of visiting competitors means that we are starting to put both the Club and golf in Herefordshire on the map. The scoring showed that despite measuring only 6,100 yards, the course has enough natural protection to stand up to even the most accomplished players in the region.”
In addition to the Raven.
The Herefordshire Golf Club was also due to host the prestigious Midland Golf Union Mid-Amateur Championships this year. Due to the COVID-19 restrictions, the tournament had to be postponed but it is hoped the event will return to the Club in 2021 or 2022.
“These are really exciting times for The Herefordshire Golf Club”
“with a new ownership structure soon to be in place, another chapter in the Club’s 124-year history is about to begin. We are looking forward to significant investment both on and off the course, breathing new life into the Club that is already on the up after a resurgence in members and visitors alike since an easing of lockdown restrictions.”
The Raven Scratch Open will return in 2021.