A host of Hampshire golfers have moved a step closer to achieving their dream of qualifying for this year’s Open.

Seven players from the county made it past the regional stage yesterday and now advance to the final round, on July 1.

Amateurs Billy McKenzie, of Rowlands Castle, and Scott Gregory, of Corhampton, who are each competing in this week’s Brabazon Trophy, both progressed at East Sussex National, with three-under and two-under respectively.

Dorset club Remedy Oak proved the most fruitful venue, with four Hampshire professionals making it through there.

Hockley'sJack Stubbington shot a one-under-par 71 to finish in a tie for third and book his place at final qualifying.

He was joined by Lee-on-the-Solent's James Ablett, AIA Group player Nick Redfern and New Forest's Chris Tyrrell, who all carded level-par rounds of 72.

There was also success for Rowlands Castle's Darren Wright, who qualified at Mere with an even-par 71.

Final qualifying will take place at four courses - Hillside, Woburn, Gailes Links and Sunningdale New - with a handful of positions available in this year’s major championship, at Royal Liverpool, from July 17-20.