His victory in the 2013 Najeti Hotels et Golfs Open completed a remarkable rise through the professional ranks. Born in Yorkshire but now an Irish passport holder after moving to Newcastle, in County Down, he was playing off a handicap of seven just a decade or so ago. “When I first went over to work as an assistant in the pro shop at Royal County Down, I could barely hit it out of my own shadow,” he admitted. But his hard work and perseverance paid off as he progressed firstly through the Irish PGA regional circuit, before moving onto the EuroPro Tour and then graduating to the Challenge Tour in 2011. Posted two top ten finishes en route to 51st place in the Rankings, but later earned a European Tour card for the first time after successfully negotiating his way through the Second and Final Stages of the Qualifying School. Showed his determination and grit in a turbulent week at the 2011 Apulia San Domenico Grand Final, during which he learned of the birth of his second child back in Ireland and also battled illness and intense pressure of possibly missing out on a European Tour card before posting the best round of the final day, a 64, to clinch his spot. Lost his card in 2012 and was playing on the Challenge Tour again at the start of 2013, before victory in Saint-Omer gave him exemption for The Race to Dubai until the end of 2014.