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.