BU Athlete: Matthew Hibbs Athlete’s Story
Written by: Matthew Hibbs
From the 1st-4th July myself and fellow 1st team player Joe Swaine were lucky enough to head to St Andrews, Scotland for the Boyd Quaich Memorial Trophy. As always, it’s a special week when you head to the ‘Home of Golf’, St Andrews. Being able to compete in an event round there is something every golfer wishes they could do. Luckily enough for myself, it is my second tournament in a few months there and another week I was very excited for.
The tournament was a four-round event, with the field being cut to the top 30 after 2 rounds. My first round was played on the World’s most famous course, The Old Course. There’s never a time when it’s not a special feeling playing that course, so it was an afternoon I couldn’t wait for. My first round was one of two halves, and one of frustration. Having played very solid for my 11 holes, an unlucky break on my 12th stopped my momentum. I dropped from -1 to +3 in my last 8 holes which was very frustrating as I feel like the way I performed should have reflected a better score. However, I tried to remain positive ahead of the second round as I knew I was playing good golf.
The second round started early and in much calmer conditions, so I was fully aware that I was going to need a round no worse than +1 if I wanted to make it to the final couple of rounds. I played very poorly for the first half of the round so I knew I had to get my act together for the last 9 holes in order to get into the top 30. Thankfully I managed to perform strongly being 2 under par for my last 9 holes to then place in 29th after 2 rounds. I was very pleased that I was able to keep calm and battle away to keep my chances of victory alive.
I was always trying to stay positive as I knew a good score was only around the corner. Shooting a good score to make the cut gave me a big boost and I was ready to get going again in round 3. I had my good friend from the 1st team this year, Joe Swaine caddying for me for the final 2 rounds and he was a massive help. Having another set of eyes looking at each shot helped me commit to the shot I was hitting and lead to great results. I played some excellent golf which lead to a very comfortable 3 under par. This set me in a good position at 1 over par for the tournament and a 29 place move up the leaderboard to 10th.
The final round was played on the famous Old course again. This really was a round of two halves. I was 6 under par for my first 10 holes after some great play from the fairway and a great putting performance. This saw me tied for the lead with 8 holes left to play. Unfortunately, just on the very next hole, another bad break saw me drop another 2 shots which destroyed all my momentum. After a very long mentally and physically tough week, to get unlucky again was very tricky to bounce back from. Having said that, I gave it 100% until the end, but it wasn’t meant to be. However, a 7th place finish is very positive and one I can be please with after being 32nd after the first round.