- Grant Forrest and Jack McDonald selected for the Walker Cup
- No Scots were selected for the 17-9 defeat in the USA in 2013
- Bearsden's Ewen Ferguson named as the first reserve
Scottish duo Grant Forrest and Jack McDonald have been rewarded for a fine couple of seasons by being selected in the GB&I squad for the Walker Cup at Royal Lytham & St Annes next month – with Ewen Ferguson named as first reserve.
After the disappointment of no Scots being selected for the 17-9 defeat to the USA back in 2013 – the first time since 1949 that had happened – captain Nigel Edwards has selected the pair who both reached the last four of the Amateur Championship, with Forrest going on to be defeated in the final by Frenchman Romain Langasque.
As well as strong individual performances, Forrest and McDonald both helped Scotland to European Amateur Team Championship success in Sweden last month, each playing key roles by contributing five points out of a possible six.
Last year, Craigielaw’s Forrest, 22, a past Scottish Boys and Scottish Amateur champion, won the St Andrews Links Trophy and was also part of the victorious European Palmer Cup team, while Kilmarnock Barassie’s McDonald, also 22, has achieved top 15 finishes at the Scottish Stroke Play Championship, St Andrews Links Trophy, Irish Amateur Open Championship and the Lytham Trophy.
Ferguson, 19, can count himself a little unlucky after recording back-to-back wins earlier this season at the Scottish Champion of Champions and Craigmillar Park Open, as well as a clutch of other top five finishes and also being part of that European Amateur Team Championship-winning side.
Five of the other eight names in the squad are Irish, with Gavin Moynihan the only returning player from the defeat in 2013. He won the Irish Amateur Championship for a second time earlier this year and finished runner-up at the Brabazon Trophy.
Other Irish players included in the side are Paul Dunne, who held the 54-hole lead at the Open Championship last month, Jack Hume, Gary Hurley and Cormac Sharvin, who won this year’s Brabazon Trophy.
Wales has been afforded the unwanted tag of having no players in the squad, with an English trio making up the squad. They are Ashley Chesters, who also enjoyed a strong showing at the Open Championship, Jimmy Mullen and Sam Horsfield, who at 18 is the youngest member of the team.
"We believe we have selected the best players for the team" - Nigel Edwards
Nigel Edwards, who will be captaining the GB&I team for the third time, said: “We have selected a talented group of players who compete at the highest levels of amateur golf and, in some cases, have played in major championships and tour events. The Walker Cup offers these players a tremendous opportunity to display their abilities and gain invaluable experience of playing in international team competition.
“I know there will be players who are disappointed not to have made the team and it has been a difficult decision to make with such strength in depth in the British and Irish game at the moment but we believe we have selected the best players for the team and are very much looking forward to the match.”
The GB&I team:
• Ashley Chesters, 26, Hawkstone Park, England;
• Paul Dunne, 22, Greystones, Ireland;
• Grant Forrest, 22, Craigielaw, Scotland;
• Sam Horsfield, 18, Davenport, Florida, USA;
• Jack Hume, 21, Naas, Ireland;
• Gary Hurley, 22, West Waterford, Ireland;
• Jack McDonald, 22, Kilmarnock (Barassie), Scotland;
• Gavin Moynihan, 20, The Island, Ireland;
• Jimmy Mullen, 21, Royal North Devon, England;
• Cormac Sharvin, 22, Ardglass, Ireland.
• Ewen Ferguson, 19, Bearsden, Scotland;
• Bradley Moore, 17, Kedleston Park, England.
The Walker Cup gets underway at Royal Lytham & St Annes over the weekend of September 12-13.
The Walker Cup selection :: Your thoughts
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