Six players never before included in any England training squad – Jason Barnes, Jonathan Gidney, Craig Hinton, Adam Keogh, Ben Martin and Ryan Newman – have been named in a 19-strong England ‘A’ Squad for 2009 just released.
The ‘A’ squad, which has been merged with the Under 21 Squad in a streamlining of the English Golf Union’s (EGU) coaching system, also includes five players from this year’s Under 21s and two from the Under 18 squad, Stiggy Hodgson, winner of the Boys Order of Merit and third placed Gary King.
The full A squad is: Jason Barnes (Chart Hills), Andrew Cooley (Chobham), Jonathan Gidney (Church Stretton), Billy Hemstock (Teignmouth), Jack Hiluta (Chelmsford), Craig Hinton (The Oxfordshire), Stiggy Hodgson (Sunningdale), Adam Keogh (Boston West), Gary King (Tyrrells Wood), Miles Mackman (Broome Manor), Ben Martin (Worthing), Sam Matton (Bowood G&CC), Ryan Newman (Brookmans Park), Matt Nixon (Ashton-under-Lyne), James Robinson (Southport & Ainsdale), Tom Shadbolt (Mid Herts), Jake Shepherd (The Wisley), Michael Swan (Stoke-by-Nayland) and Adam Wainwright (Gainsborough).
Barnes, 24, from Kent, reached the last 16 of the British and English Amateur Championships and performed creditably in the Lagonda Trophy and West of England Stroke Play.
Gidney, 21, from Shropshire, has been the Midland Youth Champion for the past three years and is also the Welsh Youths Champion.
Hinton, 20, has represented Oxfordshire at junior level in various sports including hockey, athletics, cricket and football. In golf, he finished eighth in the Bucks Scratch Open and 17th in the Tillman Trophy.
Keogh, 20, from Lincolnshire, reached the semi-finals of the English Amateur Championship at Woodhall Spa last summer, beating such players as Charlie Ford, Jason Barnes and Luke Goddard on the way.
Martin, 18 (pictured – photo courtesy of Tom Ward), from Sussex, spent much of his younger years in the Caribbean where his family lived and where he met with considerable success. He is the current holder of the Trinidad & Tobago Amateur Championship, having tied last year and won it in 2006, and he also won the Caribbean Junior Championship in 2007 in Antigua. Since returning to Britain, Martin this year finished third in the Sir Henry Cooper Junior Masters and the Sussex Colts Championship, is the Worthing Match Play Champion and he also won the Sussex Open.
Newman, 19, from Hertfordshire, finished runner-up in this year’s West of England Stroke Play Championship and also represented the EGU in the European Amateur in Denmark.
Hodgson, 18, has topped the Boys’ Order of Merit after winning the Carris Trophy (English Under 18 Championship), the McEvoy Trophy and the Duke of York Young Champions Trophy among others and was also capped at boys level. This week he defended the Daily Telegraph Junior Championship in Abu Dhabi.
Surrey team-mate King, 18, finished third behind Hodgson in the Carris Trophy, won the Skandia Junior Championship in Sweden and represented England Boys and GB&I this year.
Hemstock, 24, is a former Devon Champion who finished runner-up in the Duncan Putter and Irish Open Amateur and fourth in the Tillman Trophy, while Mackman, 22, is the South West Youths Champion and West of England Match Play Champion.
Matton, 20, won the Parman Championship, formerly the St Mellion International, this year while he and Mackman were top scorers for Wiltshire in the English County Finals at Hollinwell.
Nixon, 19, and Robinson, 20, were both in the winning Lancashire team in the County Finals. They were also members of this year’s Under 21 Squad while Nixon, a boy cap, was runner-up in the Lancashire Championship and reached the quarter finals of the English Amateur. Robinson, a semi-finalist in the English Amateur last year, has won several titles in the North West this year, including the Formby Hare, and finished runner-up in the Scottish Youths Open Championship.
Shadbolt, 20, a former Hertfordshire Champion and Boys Champion, has also been a member of the Under 21 Squad this year as has Suffolk-based Swan, 19.
Shepherd, 18, was a member of the victorious Surrey side in the English Boys County Championship having made his England debut in the Boys Home Internationals. He also finished runner-up in the Berkshire Trophy and reached the fourth round of the British Boys Championship.
Wainwright, 22, has enjoyed several high finishes this year including second individual spot in the Midland Qualifying plus three third places.
Two of the squad are currently at college in America. Cooley, 19, from Surrey, at San Diego State, is a former Italian Amateur Champion who won the West of England Stroke Play Championship this year and was third in the Tillman Trophy. Hiluta, 19, from Essex, attending the University of South Alabama, won five points from six on his England debut in the 2006 Boys Home Internationals. He was appointed England Boy Captain last year when he reached the quarter finals of the British Boys and finished fourth in the Carris Trophy.
The full A squad is:
Jason Barnes (Chart Hills)
Andrew Cooley (Chobham)
Jonathan Gidney (Church Stretton)
Billy Hemstock (Teignmouth)
Jack Hiluta (Chelmsford)
Craig Hinton (The Oxfordshire)
Stiggy Hodgson (Sunningdale)
Adam Keogh (Boston West)
Gary King (Tyrrells Wood)
Miles Mackman (Broome Manor)
Ben Martin (Worthing)
Sam Matton (Bowood G&CC)
Ryan Newman (Brookmans Park)
Matt Nixon (Ashton-under-Lyne)
James Robinson (Southport & Ainsdale)
Tom Shadbolt (Mid Herts)
Jake Shepherd (The Wisley)
Michael Swan (Stoke-by-Nayland)
Adam Wainwright (Gainsborough)