Blow to GB&I Walker Cup hopes as Frank Kennedy turns pro

Ronan MacNamara

Frank Kennedy (Photo by Octavio Passos/R&A via Getty Images)

Great Britain and Ireland captain Stuart Wilson has been handed another selection headache after England’s Frank Kennedy announced he intends to turn professional.

Kennedy was included on the provisional Walker Cup panel in December but he will not be lining out for GB&I against the USA this September.

The 17-year-old won the Lytham Trophy earlier this year and reached the semi-finals of the 128th Amateur Championship at Hillside on Saturday – losing out to eventual winner Christo Lamprecht.


Kennedy’s absence certainly leaves a place up for grabs for someone not originally named in the provisional panel to play their way onto the ten-man squad with Laytown & Bettystown’s Alex Maguire best placed to do so.

The Florida based Englishman has also left the door open for current squad members Liam Nolan, Peter O’Keeffe, Matthew McClean, Hugh Foley, Robert Moran and Mark Power to cement their places.

Kennedy took to Instagram to announce his decision: Happy to announce that the @therandagolfAmateur Championship was my last event as an Amateur Golfer. I was disappointed to not get the W but I competed hard. However it’s been a good Amateur and Junior career. I’m proud to have won the Doral Publix Junior Worlds, the Junior Honda Classic, The Irish U14/U15 Championship, The Wee Wonders Grand Final, the @u.s.kidsgolf British Championship twice in a junior golf career.

I stopped playing Junior golf as a 15 year old and concentrated solely on Men’s Amateur Golf for the last 2 years winning both the @fpgolfe_oficial Portuguese Amateur, The Lytham Trophy and last week Semi Finalist in The Amateur Championship, all before my 18th Birthday. Upon turning PRO I will be Top 50 on WAGR and Number 3 Junior in the World (no1 in Europe and USA) – very happy with this achievement for a non College Golfer that massively, and in my opinion wrongly, favours @ncaa college Golf in the WAGR ranking system. I’d like to thank some key people past and present that have helped me with my journey to date.

Thanks to my first coach and friend @danhaughian , then the great Junior Golf Coach Graham Moore who is no longer with us. Following this @nickbradleygolf homed my swing and built the foundations for what it is today. Up to date I’d like to thank my support team; @robwattsperformance my friend and swing Coach, @deetsfitness my conditioning coach; @mcleangolffriend and great mentor, @fannysunessongolf performance advisor and caddy supreme, @bzgolf outstanding caddy and all round great guy and finally @bfaxon who is unbelievable for me both as the best putting coach on the planet but most importantly a source of great counsel and constant encouragement. Now onto the PRO game where I’m looking forward to the competition ahead.

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