Dream start for new professional Daley
HAINSWORTH Park star Matt Daley celebrated receiving his professional licence by blowing away a quality field to record his maiden victory as a pro.
Playing on his home course, Daley posted 66 and 63 for a 13-under-par 129 to win the East Riding Union Open Championship by 11 shots.
After round one, Daley had a one-shot lead over defending champion, Allerthorpe Park pro' James Drinkall.
Current East Riding Union Amateur champion Jon Samuel (Hull) was two shots further back.
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Hainsworth's greens can be difficult, but nobody knows them better than Daley.
This showed in the second round when his nemesis this season, a cold putter, turned into one that was red-hot.
With birdies on the opening three holes, Daley was out of sight, and with pin-splitting irons and the hot putter he finished with an eight-under-par 63.
The score would have been a new course record but for preferred lies that had been brought into operation to counteract the possibility of 'mud balls' following recent heavy rain storms.
Drinkall had to be satisfied with a share of second, posting a 73, 10 shots worse than Daley's round, for 140.
Finishing alongside Drinkall was Hessle's Paul Lockwood, who posted two 70 rounds, and took the George Ash Salver for the leading amateur.
After receiving the Championship Needler Trophy and the winner's cheque of £300, Daley said: "I played some of my best golf ever.
"My putting has been up and down all season but it certainly came good. What a great way to start my pro career."
Ganton's Gary Brown, who has seen Daley's game develop, said: "Matt played awesome golf, of a quality seen only on tour.
"Matt has a good swing, an excellent temperament, he is conscientious and works hard at his game. It really is down to him how far he goes."
Having progressed to a plus-two handicap, Yorkshire regular Daley, 22, is now looking forward to a career in the paid ranks, initially as an assistant to Hainsworth Park's club pro Peter Myers.
As an amateur Daley had been a regular feature in the ER Union team for a number of years and this year established himself as Yorkshire team member.
He won an array of titles, including the East Riding Alliance Championship, the East Riding Union Amateur Championship, two Cyprus Mens Amateur Championships, three Yorkshire Order of Merit events and the nationally-rated South West of England Amateur Championship.
Most recently he lost in the final of the Yorkshire Amateur Championship.
Had he remained an amateur it was only a matter of time before he got a call from the England selectors.
Daley said: "I've thought long and hard about when to turn professional.
"I have had a reasonably good 2012 that could have been a whole lot better if I had putted anything like.
"I believe the time is now right to turn pro and I am going to have another go in January to try and qualify for the Asian Tour.
"I am remaining as one of the assistants at Hainsworth and the new golf studio is already providing me with a fantastic facility to practice my golf throughout the winter."
Last Saturday saw Hainsworth Park members give their support to Daley's ambitions, along with those of the club's other assistant Paul Gibson, when they held a fund raising Am-Am.
The 61 teams raised £1,500 each for Daley and Gibson to assist them in paying their PGA course expenses.
Leading two-round scores: 129 (66/63) Matt Daley* (Hainsworth Park), 140 (70/70) Paul Lockwood (Hessle), 140 (67/73) James Drinkall* (Allerthorpe Park), 141 (69/72) Jon Samuel (Hull), 144 (75/69) Alan Wright (Hessle), 144 (72/72) Gary Brown* (Ganton), 144 (72/72) Steve Robins (Hull), 145 (74/71) Andy Lockwood (Hessle), 145 (72/73) Carlo Ciullo* (K.P. Club), 145 (73/72) Mark Lamb (Sutton Park). * denotes professional.