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GB and Ireland Walker Cup team selected
06 Aug 2007
see also: The Walker Cup, Los Angeles Country Club - North Course

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Rhys Davies, Nigel Edwards and Lloyd Saltman, all members of the 2005 Walker Cup team that played the United States at Chicago Golf Club, have been selected for this year's match at Royal County Down on September 8-9. For a look at the partial U.S. team, click here.

Also included in the team of 10 top amateurs and certain to attract a large home support is 18-year-old Rory McIlroy, winner of the Silver Medal in The Open at Carnoustie, and the only amateur to complete 72-holes in the Championship.

Tony Disley, Chairman of The R&A Selection Committee said: “We have picked a strong team that is more than capable of defeating the Americans at Royal County Down. The team not only includes players with experience at the highest level but has a number of exciting younger players who we believe will excel on the occasion.

“While a number of players will naturally feel disappointed at being left out of the team, we have no doubt that the 10 players selected can regain the Walker Cup for Great Britain and Ireland.”

Jonathan Caldwell, 23, was a member of the Irish side that won the European Team Championship at Western Gailes where he gained four points out of a possible six. He has represented Ireland at various levels since being capped as a boy in 2002 and this year made the semi-final stage of the Irish Close Amateur.

Welsh player Rhys Davies, 22, played in the 2005 Walker Cup match and graduated this year from East Tennessee State University with a degree in Business Administration. Prior to starting his four-year university course he won the 2003 Boys Amateur Championship and represented Welsh Boys from 2000-2003. While at Tennessee, Davies recorded 10 USA Collegiate Tournament wins and was an NCAA first team All American from 2005-2007.

He played in the U.S. Open at Oakmont after qualifying and was a 2007 Ben Hogan Award finalist.

Here are resumes from the rest of the squad:

Nigel Edwards, 38, will be playing in his fourth Walker Cup after being in the winning teams of 2001 (Ocean Forest) and 2003 (Ganton) and in the squad that lost at Chicago in 2005. He holds down the position of Director of Player Development and Coaching for the Golf Union of Wales while competing successfully at the highest level. Already this year he has won the Duncan Putter and finished second in the Lytham Trophy, third in the Welsh Stroke Play and fifth in the St Andrews Links Trophy. He has represented Wales from 1995 to the present day.

David Horsey, 22, this year successfully defended his West of England title at Saunton and followed that win with a fourth place in the Brabazon Trophy at Forest of Arden and a sixth place in the St Andrews Links Trophy. In the Amateur Championship at Lytham, he shot a course record 64 to lead the qualifiers on 132. Since 2006 he has been an England international.

Llewellyn Matthews, 23, is the winner of the 2007 Welsh Order of Merit, a title that has come through consistency over the season. That includes his wire-to-wire win in the St Andrews Links Trophy where he shot a 15-under-par score of 273 to win by three after a final round over the Old Course of 67. On Friday, he successfully defended his Welsh Amateur title with a 2 and 1 win in the final at Royal St. David’s. Matthews qualified at Monifieth for The Open at Carnoustie.

Rory McIlroy, 18, has been pencilled in as a potential Walker Cup player for some time and his performance in The Open underlined his selection. He was exempt into the Championship through his win in the 2006 European Amateur and in 2007 won the Sherry Cup, was second in the Lytham Trophy and fourth in the Irish Stroke Play. He has a full hand of Irish Boy, Youth and Senior titles and successfully defended the latter at the European Club in 2006 following his win a year earlier at Westport.

Jamie Moul, 22, was number one in the World Amateur Golf Ranking for 16 weeks based on his performances over the 12-month period that started with his win in the 2006 Lytham Trophy followed by a third place in the Brabazon Trophy. That same year, he reached the semi-finals of both the British and English Amateur Championships. He has won the Brabazon Trophy this year, finished fourth in the St Andrews Links Trophy and reached the last 16 of the Amateur Championship. He has played for GB&I in both the Jacques Leglise Trophy and the St Andrews Trophy and has represented England in the Eisenhower Trophy.

John Parry, 20, came into Walker Cup reckoning with wins this year in the Spanish Amateur and the Welsh Stroke Play at Machynys. He is a former winner of the McEvoy Trophy and the Danish Amateur and was the Faldo Series Under-21 Champion in 2005.

Lloyd Saltman, 24, is currently the top GB&I player at number three in the WAGR and in 2007 has found the same form that justified his position in the 2005 Walker Cup match in Chicago. This year he dominated the early tournaments with wins in the Champion of Champions, the Craigmillar Park Open, the Lytham Trophy and the Irish Open Stroke Play.

Daniel Willett, 19, is currently a player in form, having won the English Amateur Championship at the weekend and seven days earlier had a 10-shot win in the South of England Championship at Walton Heath. He attends Jacksonville State University in Alabama.

 


ABOUT THE The Walker Cup

The Walker Cup Match is a biennial 10-man amateur team competition between the USA and a team composed of players from Great Britain and Ireland and selected by The R&A. It is played over two days with 18 singles matches and eight foursomes (alternate-shot) matches.

The first United States Walker Cup Team, which in 1922 defeated the GB&I side, 8-4, at the National Golf Links of America, is considered among the best teams ever and included Francis Ouimet, Bob Jones, Charles “Chick” Evans and Jess Sweetser. Many of the game’s greatest players have taken part in Walker Cup competition, including U.S. Open champions Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods and Jordan Spieth for the USA and Graeme McDowell, Rory McIlroy and Justin Rose for Great Britain and Ireland.

The USA leads the overall series 35-8-1.

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