Walker Cup not on Hill’s mind as he strives for links consistency

Ronan MacNamara

Joshua Hill (Photo by Oliver Hardt/R&A via Getty Images)

Galgorm Castle’s Joshua Hill hopes he can improve on last year’s top-20 finish at the Flogas Irish Men’s Amateur Open Championship as he searches for some consistency in links golf.

Hill who won the Mullingar Scratch Cup last year, has blown hot and cold on championship links courses over the last twelve months but feels like he is getting used to it as he transitions from a childhood on parkland.

The teenager missed the cut at last month’s West of Ireland Championship but impressed on his tournament debut at the Lytham Trophy where he co-lead after round one before securing a 13th place finish.


“I’ve struggled with links in the past coming from a parkland but over the years it’s improved because you play so much links golf you get used to it and know what you have to do,” explained Hill who’s best links finish in 2022 was 14th at the North of Ireland in Royal Portrush.

“When it gets windy you have to hit the ball pretty well because the wind can do anything to it, thankfully my ball striking is pretty good leading into this. We play links golf so much so it’s about hitting the ball that bit lower.”

Hill started the year strong with a runner-up finish at the South African Strokeplay while finishes of 17th in the South African Amateur and 13th in Lytham sandwich results of 40 and 31 in Sligo and Sotogrande.

The Northern Irishman hopes this week’s Island test can be the start of a consistent season.

“I did well in South Africa, had a good finish there came back didn’t do so well in the West, thirteenth in Lytham was a bit up and down that week, hopefully I can find a bit more consistency this week.

“The course is very difficult and we’ve a few English and Scottish lads coming over so it should be a very good competition with a great field this week.”

Hill wasn’t one of the six Irish names on the provisional Great Britain and Ireland Walker Cup panel for September and while he is tipped for big things in the amateur game at least, he hasn’t given much thought towards a debut at the Home of Golf later this year.

“It’s a Walker Cup year but I haven’t really been thinking of it, I’ll worry about it if the time comes, just play as best I can if it happens it happens, if not, it’s not the end of the world.”

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