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Neil Relishing Return to European Team Stage

2nd July 2014

Newly-crowned Amateur champion Bradley Neil believes Scotland can achieve more team success in 2014, as a confident six-man side prepare for the forthcoming European Amateur Team Championship.

Neil, the 18-year-old from Blairgowrie who achieved the biggest win of his career at the Amateur Championship at Royal Portrush just over a week ago, is looking forward to returning to team play at Linna Golf in Finland from 8 – 12 July.

A year ago, Neil, then the Scottish Boys champion, was a late call-up for the team at Silkeborg in Denmark, going on to win all three of his matches as the Scots impressed to finish runners-up to England after a closely-fought final.

Earlier this year, Neil was also part of Ian Rae's side who claimed European Nations Cup glory at Sotogrande, sparking a fine season for Scottish amateur golf which has so far seen Jamie Savage claim the Irish Open Stroke Play and Grant Forrest the St Andrews Links Trophy, before Neil's Amateur triumph.

The Perthshire player – who practiced at Hoylake over the weekend as he looks forward to playing in The Open Championship after the Europeans – is joined by Savage and Forrest in the team bound for Finland, as well as former Great Britain & Ireland cap and another Nations Cup winner, Graeme Robertson.

Jack McDonald and James Ross, who along with Forrest were key members of Europe's victorious Palmer Cup team over the USA on Saturday, make up the Scots line-up.

Scotland last won the event in 2009, when they memorably added the European crown to the world team title they won in 2008.

“We fancy our chances in Finland,” said Scottish Golf Academy member Neil, who has risen to seventh on the World Amateur Golf Rankings. “With the confidence we have, I think we have the strongest team probably since Scotland last won the event in 2009.

“It would be nice to go one better than last year and hopefully I can do my bit. We're all leaders and we've all done well this year. All six of us are capable of performing in Finland.

“Every player has earned their place and with National Coach Ian Rae leading the team again, I believe we can do very well.

“I was invited to play in the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open, which would have been a nice thing to do, but I'm obviously committed to helping my team-mates go one better at the Europeans and look forward to the challenge. Playing in our European team was one of my goals this season.”

Meanwhile, the SGU Boys' team has also been named for their European Team event at Oslo Golf Club in Norway, played over the same days 8 – 12 July.

Robert MacIntrye, fresh from winning the prestigious Sir Henry Cooper Junior Masters, and reigning British and Scottish Boys champion Ewen Ferguson are part of a strong group of six.

Stephen Gallacher Foundation Trophy winner George Burns and Scottish Boys runner-up Ben Kinsley will also hope to shine, along with two other up-and-coming talents, Calum Fyfe and Murray Naysmith.

The Scotland teams are supported by Aberdeen Asset Management and TaylorMade-adidasGolf.

SGU Team for European Amateur Team Championship

(clubs and ages denoted in brackets)

Grant Forrest (Craigielaw, 21)

Jack McDonald (Kilmarnock (Barassie), 21)

Bradley Neil (Blairgowrie, 18)

Graeme Robertson (Glenbervie, 26)

James Ross (Royal Burgess, 24)

Jamie Savage (Cawder, 19)

SGU Team for European Boys Team Championship

George Burns (Williamwood, 17)

Ewen Ferguson (Bearsden, 17)

Calum Fyfe (Cawder, 17)

Ben Kinsley (St Andrews, 18)

Robert MacIntyre (Glencruitten, 17)

Murray Naysmith (Marriott Dalmahoy, 17)

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