Pair eye Gleneagles glory in Lombard Trophy final

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Joe Ward and his Royal Worlington and Newmarket PGA professional Richard Beadles are one step away from following in the footsteps of Europe’s Ryder Cup heroes.

Ward teed up a chance to tread the fairways of the PGA Centenary Course at Gleneagles, venue for the dramatic matchplay win over the United States last year, between September 1-2 when he won his Lombard Trophy qualifying competition.

Along with Beadles, he will now advance to the regional final at Northamptonshire County Golf Club on June 29, where the pair will compete against up to 70 other clubs for the chance to secure one of 16 prized spots available for the 36-hole grand final.

Lombard, the UK’s largest asset finance provider which invests in local and regional business, has enjoyed a long association with the event, helping make it the biggest pro-am in Europe.

The tournament attracts entries from upwards of 700 clubs across Great Britain and Ireland. Lombard originally sponsored the tournament from 1995 to 2006 before returning as headline sponsor in 2013.

The PGA National Pro-Am Championship has a total prize fund of £80,000, with the winning professional at the grand final taking home a cheque for £12,000.

Ward is a 58-year-old company director living in Little Gransden. He has been playing golf for 50 years and plays off a handicap of 12.

Beadles, 38, has been a professional at Royal Worlington and Newmarket for seven years.

Last year’s winners were PGA Professional Richard O’Hanlon and amateur partner Andy Jones from St Kew Golf Club in Cornwall.