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Raymond targeting Walker Cup place
1:10pm Wednesday 10th October 2012 in Sport
Neil Raymond capped a fine season with a top ten finish in the World Amateur Championship.
The Corhampton player was England’s star performer in the prestigious event, held in Turkey.
In a tournament shortened to 54 holes because of the weather, Raymond finished in a tie for tenth, on six-under-par.
His score also helped England finish eighth in the team standings.
“It was really pleasing to perform nicely,” said Raymond. “It was a bit of a shame it wasn’t four rounds, because I feel I could have improved my position and England could have improved theirs as well.
“But it’s nice to finish in the top ten as a team and the top ten as an individual as well.”
Raymond enjoyed some great successes during the year, notably being crowned the English Stroke Play champion once again, as he won the Brabazon Trophy for a second consecutive year.
That added to his victory in the New South Wales Medal at the start of the season.
Raymond will again return to the amateur circuit next year, after missing out in the first stage of European Tour qualifying school last month.
That means the 26-year-old has the opportunity to realise his dream of competing in the Walker Cup, with Great Britain & Ireland scheduled to defend their trophy against the United States in New York next September.
“It has made my decision for next year crystal clear,” said Raymond of falling short at qualifying school.
“The Walker Cup is where I want to be, and to play that would be a dream come true.
“I’m just going to work so hard to try and make that team for next year.”
The Hampshire player believes he ends the season with his game in good shape, but with the promise of more to come.
“I don’t actually feel I’m at the top end of my game yet. That’s the best thing about it,” said Raymond.
“I’m playing nicely, but I’m still not firing on everything I’ve got.
“I still feel I have got a lot in there. I’m receiving great coaching at the moment through (Corhampton’s) Ian Roper and the England staff.”