Calum Hill is hoping to secure a spot in next month’s Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open at Gullane after feeling at home despite facing one of the toughest tests in major history in the US Open.
Hill, who’d come through two qualifiers to secure his spot in the season’s second major, finished 61st behind back-to-back winner Brooks Koepka at Shinnecock Hills, where Russell Knox was 12th.
“Brilliant,” said the 23-year-old from Kinross of his week. “I haven’t experienced anything quite like it with regards to both the course and the atmosphere. My highlight had to be going birdie-eagle on holes four and five in the first round to tie the lead (very early) in the US Open. While it was for an extremely short amount of time. It was very cool to see.” Hill was still going well at four-over for the tournament before dropping 11 shots in his closing 10 holes in the third round. “It is hard to put into words how much I struggled on the back nine on Saturday,” he added. “I was hitting the ball well, but, no matter how close I got to the putting surface, my short game was not ready for the conditions and I was unable to adapt.
“However, I think this week has just been solid verification that I am capable of competing at a high level in golf. Where that may be is still to be determined, however, I feel like I’m on the right track.”
His next event is a title defence in the San Juan Open in New Mexico before turning his attention to the Scottish Open. “I have signed up for Scottish Open qualifying and it would be incredible to play in such an important event back home,” he said.