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Meet the Walker Cup teams

The Walker Cup takes place from September 2-3 at St Andrews. Check out who will feature for the USA and for GB&I right here.

 

Great Britain & Ireland and the United States have announced their teams for the 49th Walker Cup.

The 49th edition of the amateur team event will be held at the Old Course at St Andrews. The ‘Home of Golf’ will play host to the competition for the first time since 1975.

Team USA are the defending champions, having won at Seminole Golf Club in 2021. This year’s visitors have won the last three editions of the Walker Cup.

Both teams comprise of ten players, ranging from teenagers to those in their 30s. The two teams will face on at St Andrews on September 2 and 3 to kick off an incredible month of team golf, which included the Solheim Cup and Ryder Cup.

Who will be playing at St Andrews?

Team GB&I

Stuart Wilson – Captain
James Ashfield
Jack Bigham
Barclay Brown
John Gough
Connor Graham
Alex Maguire
Matthew McClean
Liam Nolan
Mark Power
Calum Scott

Stuart Wilson is the GB&I captain for the second successive Walker Cup. A former winning member of the team back in 2003, Wilson also won the Amateur Championship a year later. He won the Silver Medal as the low amateur at The Open at Royal Troon in 2004, and appeared at Augusta National for the Masters the following year.

Wilson skippered GB&I at Seminole Golf Club in 2021, and also led the GB&I team in the St Andrews Trophy last year, when they defeated Continental Europe. The Scot also led the European teams in the Junior Ryder Cup in both 2012 and 2014.

Barclay Brown featured for the GB&I team in Seminole two years ago. The Englishman earned All-American honours in his senior year at Stanford University and finished T4 in the NCAA Division One Individual Championship. He played in the US Open at Los Angeles Country Club, having also made the cut at the Open Championship at St Andrews last year.

Mark Power also played at Seminole and was one of GB&I’s bright sparks, finishing the week with a 3-1-0 record, including winning both of his foursomes matches alongside John Murphy. He also featured for the team against Continental Europe in the St Andrews Trophy in 2022, along with playing for home nation Ireland in the Eisenhower Trophy.

James Ashfield will represent GB&I in the Walker Cup for the first time. He finished runner-up at the Lytham Trophy and the European Amateur Championship earlier this year. Ashfield won the Welsh Amateur Championship in 2022 and he made the semis of the Amateur Championship at Nairn Golf Club two years ago.

Jack Bigham will also make his Walker Cup debut. In 2021, he won the R&A Boys’ Amateur Championship at Royal Cinque Ports, and has gone on to play his collegiate golf with Florida State University.

Another to make his Walker Cup debut will be John Gough. The Englishman has won both the Irish Amateur Open and the Australian Masters of the Amateurs this year. He was also victorious at the Spanish Amateur and the Lytham Trophy in 2022. He will follow in the footsteps of younger brother Conor, who represented GB&I in 2019.

Also following in a sibling’s footsteps will be Calum Scott. Elder brother Sandy played for GB&I at Royal Liverpool four years ago, and now Calum gets his chance. The Nairn member played for GB&I in last year’s St Andrews Trophy win over Continental Europe and finished T3 in this year’s St Andrews Links Trophy.

Alex Maguire won the first ever Open Amateur Series to qualify for The 151st Open at Royal Liverpool. He also won the St Andrews Links Trophy and the East of Ireland Amateur Open this year, retaining the title at the latter after also winning it in 2022. He will be another debutant in the Walker Cup for GB&I.

Liam Nolan adds to the Irish contingent in the competition. He has won the South American Amateur and the Brabazon Trophy this year and finished in the top four in the North of Ireland, South of Ireland and West of Ireland Amateur Championships last year.

Another Irishman to make his debut in the Walker Cup this year will be Matthew McClean. He featured at both the Masters Tournament and the US Open this year, and was the victor at the US Mid-Amateur Championship at Erin Hills in 2022. He played for GB&I in the St Andrews Trophy against Continental Europe last year, part of the winning team.

Scotland’s Connor Graham is the big story in the team, as he becomes one of the youngest players to ever feature in the Walker Cup. He will make his debut for GB&I at the age of just 17 at St Andrews. He won the R&A Junior Open in Monifieth and finished runner-up in the Lytham Trophy in 2022.

Team USA

Mike McCoy – Captain
Nick Dunlap
David Ford
Nick Gabrelcik
Austin Greaser
Stewart Hagestad
Ben James
Dylan Menante
Gordon Sargent
Preston Summerhays
Caleb Surratt

Like Wilson, Team USA captain Mike McCoy is also a former Walker Cup player. He featured in the 2015 edition of the event, played at Royal Lytham & St Anne’s. McCoy has had a successful amateur career, including winning the US Mid-Amateur Championship two years prior to his Walker Cup debut. He then featured in the Masters Tournament as an amateur in 2014.

His team looks incredibly strong on paper. Despite the withdrawal of Michael Thorbjornsen, the US team still has amazing strength. All 10 players featuring for the Americans in 2023 are inside the top 20 on the World Amateur Golf Rankings. Compare that to just a single member of the GB&I squad.

Returning for his fourth appearance in the Walker Cup will be Stewart Hagestad. He has been a part of the last three editions of the tournament, on the winning side in each of those appearances. Hagestad has won four matches across those three appearances. He won the US Mid-Amateur Championship in 2021, which led to him playing in the Masters Tournament a year later. Hagestad is the only member of the team who is not a Walker Cup rookie.

Nick Dunlap comes into the Walker Cup in the best form possible having won the US Amateur Championship. In winning the competition, he became just the second man in history to win both the US Junior Amateur Championship and the US Amateur Championship. The other, a certain Tiger Woods. Dunlap will make his Walker Cup debut this year at St Andrews.

Gordon Sargent sit atop the World Amateur Golf Rankings as the leading amateur in the game. He won the NCAA D1 Stroke Play Championship in 2022, and played in both the Masters Tournament and the US Open this year, finishing inside the top 40 at the latter. Sargent played alongside his compatriots at the Eisenhower Trophy in 2022 as well.

David Ford will also be a first-time Walker Cup participant. He won the Southern Amateur Championship in 2022, and has two more wins since then. Ford made an appearance at the Barbasol Championship on the PGA Tour earlier this year, and also played at the Arnold Palmer Cup.

Another debutant in the Walker Cup is Nick Gabrelcik. The American won the Southern Amateur Championship earlier this season along with three runners-up finishes in collegiate action. He made it to the last 32 of the US Amateur Championship recently and was also a member of the team who played at the Arnold Palmer Cup.

2022 Western Amateur Championship winner Austin Greaser is another of the Americans who will be making their bow in the Walker Cup this year. He comes to St Andrews inside the top ten on the WAGR, and having played for the USA in the Eisenhower Trophy last year. Greaser also featured at the Wells Fargo Championship on the PGA Tour earlier in 2023.

A three-time winner in collegiate golf already in 2023, Ben James comes into his debut Walker Cup in great form. He has won the General Hackler Championship, the Lewis Chitenga Memorial and the NCAA Las Vegas Regional. James also made it to the quarter finals of the US Amateur Championship and featured at the Travelers Championship on the PGA Tour.

Dylan Menante has six top-tens in his last nine outings, including finishing runner-up at the Southern Amateur Championship. He won three times in collegiate golf in 2022 and has been in consistent form throughout the last couple of years to warrant his place in the US team for the Walker Cup at St Andrews.

Preston Summerhays continues the debutant trend in the Team USA camp for this year’s Ryder Cup. Summerhays was victorious at the Thunderbird Collegiate earlier this year and finished inside the top ten at the Western Amateur Championship. He also featured in the Arnold Palmer Cup earlier this season.

Caleb Surratt has five wins over the last two years leading into his Walker Cup debut. He lifted the SEC Championship at collegiate level earlier this year and finished runner-up at the US Junior Amateur Championship last year.

Having seen the teams, who do you think will take home the Walker Cup from St Andrews? Let us know with a Tweet!

Matt Coles

Matt Coles

Mention a European country, and Matt will tell you which resorts make the National Club Golfer Top 100s: European Resorts list. He might even throw in who designed the golf course and how many rooms the hotel has got at each one…

Matt got into the game of golf from a young age, following his old man to the local golf club. He fell for the sport, and now can’t seem to go a day without thinking about how to improve his game (Thanks Dad!). Matt has been a member of Howley Hall GC in Leeds since 2020, and is just about managing to maintain a single-figure handicap. He likes to remind people that he once broke 75, but won’t tell people that it was on a shortened course during the winter.

He moved to Leeds after graduating from the University of Central Lancashire with a First Class Honours degree in Sports Journalism. Matt joined NCG after almost five years travelling the world with the Professional Squash Association, working on events in all four corners of the globe.

Matt currently plays a Cobra King LTDx driver and RadSpeed 3-wood. TaylorMade monopolise the rest of his bag, with a SIM UDI, M5 irons and both Milled Grind and HI-TOE wedges, along with a Monza Redline putter. He uses a Vice Pro Plus golf ball, because he’s a bit different…

Away from golf, Matt is a Manchester United fan, and a keen runner, having ran the Rob Burrow Leeds Marathon (his first and possibly last), in May 2023.

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