Hat-trick hero

Rhys Thompson scored a sensational hat-trick of victories in the space of just 15 days to top the Durham County Order of Merit.

The highlight for the 21-year-old was victory in the inaugural Boldon Scratch Open on his home track and he capped off the weekend with a win in the resurrected Consett Open.

That double came hot on the heels of winning the Keith Shivers Bowl at Heworth and a fourth place finish in the Pannal Rose Bowl.

“It’s been going well,” said Thompson, who enjoyed a stellar couple of years with his Durham County Matchplay Championship win, top individual score in the Northern Counties Championship and the Durham County Order of Merit two years in succession – a third triumph looks on the cards.

Thompson, currently playing off a handicap of plus three, fancies a crack at the pro ranks but won’t be rushed into any decision. He currently works at Slaley Hall and has a degree in golf management.

“I’d like to give pro golf a go but I’m still looking to see how the rest of the year goes and then I’ll weigh up my options,” he added.

Boldon’s inaugural 36-hole scratch open proved a fantastic day with praise from the players for both the course and the organisation of the event, which was sponsored by Kymel Trading.

Thompson’s eight under-par total of 136 saw him win by three from Castle Eden’s Ryan Dixon followed by Boldon’s Gav Nesbit on 140.

At Consett, Thompson won on countback from Richard Aisbitt and Jordan Bettis, all finishing on 69 in the event, which was last played in 2003.