Drummond aims higher in new world of rich pickings

Nick Faldo, like many of his peers at Wentworth over the weekend, had never heard of the new Volvo PGA champion, Scott Drummond. But even with his glasses - his fingers are too large to get contact lenses in and out - the four-times winner of the European Tour's flagship event knew what he was seeing. "If you have the bottle to get around this course then it shows you have talent," Faldo said.

Nick Faldo, like many of his peers at Wentworth over the weekend, had never heard of the new Volvo PGA champion, Scott Drummond. But even with his glasses - his fingers are too large to get contact lenses in and out - the four-times winner of the European Tour's flagship event knew what he was seeing. "If you have the bottle to get around this course then it shows you have talent," Faldo said.

Drummond had never played the West Course before last Monday, but on Sunday he waltzed round in 64, as Colin Montgomerie did five years ago, on what turned out to be a life-changing afternoon.

"I've certainly surprised myself," said the 30-year-old from Shropshire. "I was expecting to feel the pressure on the back nine but I was probably more nervous on the last six holes on Saturday. My game was so good, I felt in control. I just stayed relaxed. I can't put my finger on why I've been able to do it this week."

Like all rookies, Drummond's aim this season was merely to keep his Tour card. Having only made the cut three times in 11 events, merely playing on the weekend was an achievement.

But everything has now changed. He pocketed a cheque for £420,000, as well as £5,000 for the bet he had on himself at 500-1. He has a place in the Open at Royal Troon, something he missed out on last time in Ayrshire in 1997 when he had a double-bogey on the last hole of the qualifying competition.

On the Order of Merit, he jumped from 186th to eighth place. He also moved up 340 places on the world rankings, from 435th to 95th. On the European points list of the Ryder Cup table he came from nowhere to 12th place.

Suddenly, playing at Oakland Hills against the Americans in September is a realistic possibility, rather than a joke. "Some friends were trying to make me feel better about my form earlier in the season, but I just said if I won a couple of the big events I could be in the Ryder Cup," he recalled.

To secure a place on the team he will have to continue to produce the form he showed last week. If he slips back into the pre-Wentworth routine, it will not happen. Not even Drummond, perhaps, knows what is about to unfold now.

Golf has been his game ever since he tagged along to watch his father, George, play at the age of six. He had his first hole-in-one at nine. He played amateur golf for England - he was England Boys captain and played at full international level with Steve Webster - but took his family's Scottish allegiance on turning professional.

Years on the minor circuits followed, journeying through the Hippo Tour, the Futures Tour, the Mastercard Tour and then the Challenge Tour, from which he earned full playing rights last year.

"My dad is so much behind me," he said. "I don't know how he did it but he always made funds available for me to keep going. He has lived for my golf - it has always been his dream for me to get on Tour. After this, he is going to be uncontrollable."

Faldo's 66 was overshadowed, but represented an equally remarkable renaissance in form. He now heads for a pre-qualifier for the US Open at Lake Nona in Orlando next week. It is the first time he has tried to pre-qualify for a major since 1976.

Montgomerie, who dropped to 57th in the world, said he will not try and qualify for the US Open. Joakim Haeggman, third at Wentworth, moved up to 50th in the world to become exempt for Shinnecock Hills in his bid to play on the Ryder Cup team rather than act as an assistant to captain Bernhard Langer.

Suggested Topics
News
Netherlands' goalkeeper Tim Krul fails to make a save from Costa Rica's midfielder Celso Borges during a penalty shoot-out in the quarter-final between Netherlands and Costa Rica during the 2014 FIFA World Cup
newsGoalkeepers suffer from 'gambler’s fallacy' during shoot-outs
News
people
Travel
travel
Arts and Entertainment
Sydney and Melbourne are locked in a row over giant milk crates
artCultural relations between Sydney and Melbourne soured by row over milk crate art instillation
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Adèle Exarchopoulos and Léa Seydoux play teeneage lovers in the French erotic drama 'Blue Is The Warmest Colour' - The survey found four times as many women admitting to same-sex experiences than 20 years ago
arts + entsBlue Is The Warmest Colour, Bojack Horseman and Hobbit on the way
News
Two giraffes pictured on Garsfontein Road, Centurion, South Africa.
i100
Environment
View from the Llanberis Track to the mountain lake Llyn
Du’r Arddu
environmentA large chunk of Mount Snowdon, in north Wales, is up for sale
News
Kenny Ireland, pictured in 2010.
peopleBenidorm, actor was just 68
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
arts + ents
News
people
News
Morrissey pictured in 2013
people
News
A scene from the video shows students mock rioting
newsEnd-of-year leaver's YouTube film features playground gun massacre
News
i100
Life and Style
The director of Wall-E Andrew Stanton with Angus MacLane's Lego model
gadgetsDesign made in Pixar animator’s spare time could get retail release
News
peopleGuitarist, who played with Aerosmith, Lou Reed and Alice Cooper among others, was 71
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Dress the Gaza situation up all you like, but the truth hurts

Robert Fisk on Gaza conflict

Dress the situation up all you like, but the truth hurts
Save the tiger: Tiger, tiger burning less brightly as numbers plummet

Tiger, tiger burning less brightly

When William Blake wrote his famous poem there were probably more than 100,000 tigers in the wild. These days they probably number around 3,200
5 News's Andy Bell retraces his grandfather's steps on the First World War battlefields

In grandfather's footsteps

5 News's political editor Andy Bell only knows his grandfather from the compelling diary he kept during WWI. But when he returned to the killing fields where Edwin Vaughan suffered so much, his ancestor came to life
Lifestyle guru Martha Stewart reveals she has flying robot ... to take photos of her farm

Martha Stewart has flying robot

The lifestyle guru used the drone to get a bird's eye view her 153-acre farm in Bedford, New York
Former Labour minister Meg Hillier has demanded 'pootling lanes' for women cyclists

Do women cyclists need 'pootling lanes'?

Simon Usborne (who's more of a hurtler) explains why winning the space race is key to happy riding
A tale of two presidents: George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story

A tale of two presidents

George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story
Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover

The dining car makes a comeback

Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover
Gallery rage: How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?

Gallery rage

How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?
Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players

Eye on the prize

Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players
Women's rugby: Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup

Women's rugby

Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup
Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices