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matthew jordan open tee shot

Matthew Jordan: ‘I’ve qualified – but I don’t want this experience to go to waste’

 

Matthew Jordan had his eyes fixed on The 151st Open Championship the moment he holed his final putt at Final Open Qualifying.

The 27-year-old will be in the unique position of playing a major at Royal Liverpool Golf Club, a place he has been a member of since the age of seven.

After carding rounds of 65 and 69, Jordan came tied for second at West Lancashire which was more than enough to book one of the five spots up for grabs at Hoylake.

After harnessing the pressure and the prospect of qualifying for an Open in his backyard, the man from the Wirral is now determined to not just make up the numbers.

“I’ve qualified, but I don’t want this experience to go to waste now,” he said. “I will just probably play it how I know to play it.

“I know every pin position. I’ve seen it soft, I’ve seen it firm, I’ve seen it with rough up and down, so I will just play it exactly how I know to get the best score out of each hole.

“It’s brilliant – My dad is a member, and my grandad’s been a member. I know everyone there and all my friends that I play with.

“It did matter more than the previous times I’ve tried to qualify for this. It is brilliant, I don’t want to take away anything from it, it just has that sentimental value.

matthew jordan

“I realised it was getting close when all the members started asking me – ‘When is it?’ I knew it was coming a month or two in advance, and I prepared for it and for this stretch.

“I wanted to give myself the best chance to do it because that was certainly one of the goals, and thankfully it was now.”

Jordan was drawn into the marquee group with Sergio Garcia and Jamie Donaldson in Final Qualifying. Throughout a scorching day on Merseyside, a large crowd followed the trio for 36 holes, but just Jordan from this group prevailed.

Despite shooting 5-under in the morning, Garcia couldn’t find enough birdies in the afternoon. The Spaniard will miss The Open – something that hasn’t been said since 1997.

Jordan resisted the urge to chat with people he recognised on the day as he waded through a free-roaming crowd at West Lancs that was tough for the marshals to contain.

Focus was key while playing with a former Masters champion and a Ryder Cup hero in Donaldson too, and Jordan wanted to do whatever it took to qualify for his second Open.

“I don’t care how I qualify, I qualified,” he added. “That was the main thing, it was great playing in such a good group because they play good golf, and it spurs you on.

“As long as you know what you have to beat – I had it last year when I played with Sam Bairstow who also qualified (for St Andrews in 2022).

“It was brilliant to play with him (Garcia). You focus on, especially towards the end, what you’re doing really. You can’t think about what he’s doing.

“But off the tee, he was brilliant and a lot better than I was, which I know he’s renowned for and it was great to bring even more people out which I’m sure he did.”

A Matthew Jordan golf dream probably looks something like lifting the Claret Jug at Hoylake next week, and he is ready to battle with the likes of Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm, and Scottie Scheffler to win the Open Championship.

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matthew jordan

Steve Carroll

Steve Carroll

A journalist for 25 years, Steve has been immersed in club golf for almost as long. A former club captain, he has passed the Level 3 Rules of Golf exam with distinction having attended the R&A's prestigious Tournament Administrators and Referees Seminar.

Steve has officiated at a host of high-profile tournaments, including Open Regional Qualifying, PGA Fourball Championship, English Men's Senior Amateur, and the North of England Amateur Championship. In 2023, he made his international debut as part of the team that refereed England vs Switzerland U16 girls.

A part of NCG's Top 100s panel, Steve has a particular love of links golf and is frantically trying to restore his single-figure handicap. He currently floats at around 11.

Steve plays at Close House, in Newcastle, and York GC, where he is a member of the club's matches and competitions committee and referees the annual 36-hole scratch York Rose Bowl.

Having studied history at Newcastle University, he became a journalist having passed his NTCJ exams at Darlington College of Technology.

What's in Steve's bag: TaylorMade Stealth 2 driver, 3-wood, and hybrids; TaylorMade Stealth 2 irons; TaylorMade Hi-Toe, Ping ChipR, Sik Putter.

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