Friday, August 29, 2014


Stuart Tatters and his elder daughter, Kylie, 12, with the David Blair Trophy beside Elgin's 18th green.

Stuart Tatters' play-off victory over Moray clubmate Kyle Godsman in the North of
Scotland Open Amateur stroke-play championship at Elgin Golf Club on Sunday was no surprise to golfing pundits in the Elgin-Lossiemouth area.
But for many golf fans further south, even in Aberdeen, it was a case of "Stuart who?"
Tatters' golfing CV is an interesting one, including a spell as a tour  professional in America and then five years out of the game, but he hopes that 2015 will be his biggest year by challenging for the Scottish amateur stroke-play championship on home turf – Moray Old - and gaining a first Scotland cap at the age of 39.
Stuart was one of the first Scottish youngsters to go to a US college. He enrolled at Pfeiffer University (North Carolina) in 1995 more or less off his own bat.
"That was in the pre-internet days and before there were US talent-scouting agencies
in Scotland," says Elgin-born Tatters.

Like Russell Knox, who made the transatlantic crossing a decade later, Stuart won five times on the US college circuit and he was named to the All-American Team by the coaches more than once.
Like Knox, Tatters met his wife-to-be over there and he too turned pro in the States.
From about 2000 Stuart played the mini-tours in America. But unlike Knox, Tatters was unable to progress to the US PGA Tour.
When his elder daughter Kylie reached school age, he and his wife decided it was time to return to Scotland so that she would gain a better education.
So Stuart applied for reinstatement as an amateur and put away his clubs for five years to enjoy family life and be an at-home father rather than one that was away at tournaments much of the golf season.
"By 2010, I had regained an appetite to play competitively again, this time as an amateur and I won the Moray club championship in 2011. In fairness to the family, I have never followed the SGU Order of Merit circuit of 72-hole open events, but Sunday's win in the North of Scotland Open might change that mindset for next year at least," says Stuart who works as an account manager for DHL International, covering the North and North-east of Scotland.
"One of my ambitions has long been to play for Scotland in the home internationals. That dream might not seem so far fetched, if I could follow up Sunday's win with a good week at next year's Scottish amateur stroke-play championship - which will be played at Lossiemouth, obviously a links I  know well - and I also enter and do well in a selection of the SGU Order of Merit tournaments, then there would be a fair chance that I could finish up the season in the Scotland team."
Tatters does most of his practice at night after the kids are in bed at Lossiemouth's  CoveSea  driving range, run by Gordon Clark who is very supportive to Stuart’s international ambition and he will be working even harder on honing his game for the challenges  ahead in 2015.



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