Calum joins innovative mixed golf tournament in Jordan

Kinross golfer Calum Hill is helping to break new ground at the Jordan Mixed Open.

Northern Ireland Open Golf Championship at Galgorm Resort & Spa.

Winner of the Northern Ireland Open Calum Hill of Scotland. Picture by Peter Morrison/Presseye
Northern Ireland Open Golf Championship at Galgorm Resort & Spa. Winner of the Northern Ireland Open Calum Hill of Scotland. Picture by Peter Morrison/Presseye

For the first time, players from the Ladies European Tour, Staysure Tour and Challenge Tour will come together in the same event at Ayla Golf Club and compete for a £300,000 prize fund.

Forty players from each tour, and three amateurs, teed off on Thursday to tackle the Greg Norman design from different tees with the Challenge Tour boys facing a 7100 yard course in the 54-hole strokeplay event, while the over 50s will play a course measuring 6,601 yards, with the ladies taking on 6139 yards.

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Former Kinross High School pupil Calum is one of the Challenge Tour representatives having won on the circuit in Northern Ireland last year in just his fifth start.

He also qualified for, and made the cut in, the US Open Championship at Shinnecock Hills and finished 35th on the Challenge Tour rankings despite only playing the second half of the season.

Since then he’s signed up to the Bounce management company and looks set for a real shot this season at winning his main European Tour card.

Ahead of the tournament starting, Calum said he was excited to be part of the innovative new format.

He said: “I played with Barry Lane and Charlotte Leatham yesterday and today I played with the Italian amateur Emilie Paltrinieri.

“It’s been really nice to meet people from different parts of the professional game that you wouldn’t meet otherwise.

“It’s great to watch and pick up a thing here or there just because they’ve either been around a long time or approach the game differently.”

Calum was brought up in Dalgety Bay before moving to Kinross. He played his junior golf at Aberdour and Muckhart before taking his game to a new level during a stint at Western New Mexico University.

The 54-hole Jordan Mixed Open runs from April 4-6 at Ayla Golf Club in Aqaba.