BOURNEMOUTH’S Chris Tyrrell described his extraordinary Open qualifying adventure as “like a scene out from Batman and Robin”.
Tyrrell went from singing lullabies to his baby daughter in Poole Park to emerging victorious from a play-off following a frantic dash back to Remedy Oak.
The 34-year-old thought his chances of winning a place in final qualifying had been slim after he had carded a level-par 72 at the Horton course on Monday.
But after having taken his fiancée Becky to an appointment at Poole Hospital, Tyrrell received a call from the organizers that he was needed for a six-man play-off.
“I was sitting in Poole Park singing to my daughter Charlotte and looking out over the lake when the call came,” said Tyrrell, who lives in Charminster.
“They told me to get back to the course because I was in a play-off. I knew there was an outside chance but didn’t want to hang around because I had to take Becky to the hospital.
“My brother Jamie, who had caddied for me during the day, was with me and had followed me to the hospital in his van just in case we had to go back.
“We drove back to the hospital car park, strapped my clubs to the back of his van and set off for Remedy Oak. I was changing back into my golf gear as we were driving along the A31 and it was like a scene out of Batman and Robin!
“We arrived in the nick of time and I made straight for the tee. It was a six-man play-off for five spots and one of the other lads lost on the first hole. It was a huge relief for me.”
Tyrrell, whose late grandfather Reg had been responsible for unearthing a number of Ipswich’s 1981 UEFA Cup-winning team before joining Cherries as chief scout and discovering the likes of Kevin Reeves, is the resident club professional and golf manager at New Forest Golf Club in Lyndhurst.
He was one of 12 players at Remedy Oak to book a place in final qualifying and will be bidding to win a slot in The Open at Royal Liverpool next month when he takes his chance at Hillside in Southport on Monday.
“VJ Singh is trying to qualify at the same course and I may offer to clean his clubs on the range if I see him!” joked Tyrrell, who won through the regionals at the third time of asking.
Remedy Oak qualifiers: -3 Gary Marks (World of Golf), -2 Kris Nicol (Paul Lawrie Centre), -1 Jack Stubbington (Hockley), Roderick Bastard (Marbella), Jordan McColl (Scots Craig), Joshua Walsh (St Enodoc), Thomas Shadbolt (Brocket Hall), par Farren Keenan (Sunningdale), Sam Matton (Bowood), Nicholas Redfern (AIA Group), James Ablett (Lee-on-Solent), Chris Tyrell (New Forest).