Pro takes on county captaincy

The Durham County Golf Union will break new ground next year after naming PGA professional Simon Robinson as its new county captain.

It’s believed to be the first time a golf professional has been asked to captain a county side in the UK, which might raise a few eyebrows, but it also signals a change in county golf.

Robinson, 37, has previously worked with the county side and outgoing captain Gerry Johnson.

“I’ve spoken to Gerry about how I can help over the last couple of years,” said Simon. “Then he asked if I was interested in taking over. Initially I said I didn’t have the time but people kept asking why I wouldn’t do it and in the end I thought ‘why not?’

“I don’t talk about amateurs or professionals, I just talk about golfers. It’s not a radical idea – golfers are golfers so why not have a pro as county captain?

“I really care about Durham. The county gave me a lot in my early career and I think it’s time for me to give something back. Gerry has put a good system in place and the county squad is a good blend of youth and experience, and we’ll be trying to continue that.”

Simon grew up playing at Seaton Carew Golf Club and was a Durham regular before joining the paid ranks. Now based at Sharpley, he is a past winner on the EuroPro and Challenge tours.