On April the 15th-17th the first EuroPro event of the 2014 season, The Matchroom Championship was held at The Belfry (Brabazon).
The course itself was in fantastic condition taking into consideration that it is still early in the golfing calender year. The greens were fast and the rough was lush making The Brabazon, a tough test of golf especially when the wind strengthened.
The field was undoubtedly one of the strongest Tom had ever played. The 156 players included a handful of seasoned European Tour professionals and even more Challenge Tour card holders. This made the week a good challenge as well as a great experience for benchmarking himself.
Unfortunately Tom was battling with his swing leading up to the tournament and was certainly not 100% comfortable when setup over the ball. After 15 holes on the 1st round Tom found himself -1 and in T2nd, but after a quick single and double bogey he was knocked down to +2 and T54th after play had finished for the day. The 2nd round presented a different set of challenges with a much stronger wind in a different direction to previous days. Tom battled through the front 9 in +3 only to find himself standing on the 16th tee knowing he had to make at least 2 birdies to have a chance of making the cut. He did so, keeping his nerve and birdieing 16 and 17 as well as 2 putting from roughly 80ft on the iconic 18th to finish on +3 for the day and +5 for the tournament.
In the end Tom finished T52nd and was agonisingly close to making the cut, with 50 and ties making it through to the final day. Upon reflection there are a lot of positives to draw upon with Tom still finishing inside the top 1/3rd of such a strong field even when struggling with his swing as well as finishing strong when needing to.
Tom now has 2 weeks of hard practice under the watchful eye of Rob Watts and Jake Bailey in order to get him confident and ready for the first Alps Tour event of the 2014 season. He will be in action again in France on the 1st – 3rd May for the Open International de Rebetz.