Four young Scottish players will live the American dream this week when they tee up at the invitation of the legendary Tom Watson in an inaugural team event.
In an amazing opportunity for Aboyne’s Shannon McWilliam, Sam Locke from Stonehaven, Chloe Goadby (St Regulus) and Peebles’ Darren Howie, the Scots amateur quartet will compete in The Major Champions Invitational in Florida.
The unique tournament has been created by six-time major champion Sir Nick Faldo and runs from tomorrow (12 March) until Wednesday, with the costs for the Scottish players fully funded by the organisers. The event is an extension of the popular Faldo Series, providing major champions an opportunity to mentor and inspire the next generation of players while giving back to the game.
Scottish Golf was delighted to accept the opportunity after Watson – the eight-time Major champion and US Ryder Cup captain at Gleneagles in 2014 – made a special request for his team to come from Scotland. The 68-year-old has always held a great affinity for Scotland, having won four of his five Open Championships on the nation’s links, and all three of his Senior Open crowns.
Watson is joined by the likes of Jack Nicklaus, Dustin Johnson, Keegan Bradley, Nancy Lopez, Tony Jacklin and Jim Furyk in a stellar line-up at Bella Collina in Montverde, Florida. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Faldo Trust for Tomorrow’s Children Inc.
“The response from major champions and sponsors for this first-year event has far exceeded any expectations we had going in,” said Faldo. “Their support is key to helping make a positive impact on the juniors competing, and providing them with a one-of-a-kind, world-class experience. I couldn’t be more excited about these 19 teams.”
Locke, last year’s Scottish Men’s Amateur champion (pictured top), and reigning Boys’ Order of Merit winner Howie are now relishing the opportunity, along with Curtis Cup hopeful McWilliam and University of Stirling talent Goadby.
“We are extremely grateful to Sir Nick Faldo and Tom Watson who requested to have the opportunity for both Scottish males and females to play in the inaugural Major Champions Invitational,” said Stuart Clayton, Head of Performance at Scottish Golf.
“This event will be the start of something very special and offer a unique and inspirational chance for many golfers from across the globe.
“We wish our golfers every success at the event and are sure that they will continue to learn, develop and grow from such an amazing opportunity presented to us.”
The Major Champions Invitational is a made-for-TV event which will air on CBS in the US on 11 August, preceding coverage of the 2018 PGA Championship. For more information, visit MajorChampionsInvitational.com
Later this year, the 2018 Faldo Series Scotland Championship will be hosted in Edinburgh for the first time at Bruntsfield Links Golfing Society, the world’s fourth oldest golf club.