Mount Juliet golf professional Matt Sandercock
With the country in lockdown people are struggling to get their sporting fix, not least the many golfers across Kilkenny
With that in mind we’re trying a little something new here in the Kilkenny People - a Know Your Pro feature.
Designed as a little bit of fun, it gives people the chance to get to know the club professionals based in Kilkenny.
First to the tee is Matt Sandercock, the advanced PGA professional and the Director of Golf at Mount Juliet Estate. Sandercock joined the Kilkenny club in 2017, bringing with him a history of coaching at all levels, including success with European Tour players.
Name: Matt Sandercock.
Club: Mount Juliet Estate
Previous clubs (if any): Bovey Castle & Sunningdale Golf Club (England).
Years Pro: Fifteen years.
How did you become a professional?: Coming from a family of golfers, my grandad was the main inspiration for me to play and pursue a career in the game.
I had a very supportive PGA Club Professional Graham Webb who assisted and continues to assist in my career. Bovey Castle then employed me out of college and put me through the PGA training.
What made you decide to follow this route?: I enjoyed coaching and was fortunate to play with some good amateurs whilst growing up so that natural progression for me was to become a PGA Professional.
Golf was my main focus from the age of 13 for a career path so I began working at the local professional shop at weekends.
When did you first start playing golf?: I first started playing around seven years old with my Dad and Grandad at Holsworthy a small members club in Devon, England.
Favourite club in your bag: 54 degree Callaway MD4 wedge - it’s saved me many a time!
What’s the best course you’ve played on: Sunningdale Old Course or Bay Hill would take some beating for me!
Most memorable round played: Playing my first round at Sunningdale with three other members and being the only player in the group not to have played in the Ryder Cup!
Toughest hole played: So many for this category but the 15th Wentworth West Course stands out for me – nowhere to go !
Golf professionals are there to teach, but what’s the best advice you’ve ever received?: On the first tee swing it as long and loose as you can. Everybody tightens up and shortens the backswing and it all becomes a blur!
How do you relax - away from the golf course?: Time with my two sons Ernie and Stanley, generally building Lego at this stage!
Choose one - Tiger, Seve, Shane or Rory: Tiger without doubt for me. He’s been a huge influence on my uptake in the game.
What course is on your bucket-list to play?: Royal Melbourne, but there are so many fantastic venues in Australia to visit!
Who would be in your dream fourball?: Tiger Woods, Michael Jordan and Noel Gallagher.
Tell us a little-known fact about your home course: The Par four 15th is voted in the Bears Best as designed by Jack Nicklaus.
What golfing event are you most looking forward to in 2021?: Hosting the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open here at Mount Juliet. This will be a special year for all of us here at Mount Juliet and the South-East, as we will be marking our 30th year anniversary also.
Lastly, any quick tip for budding golfers out there?: Hit it as far as you can and work on accuracy after. Ensure the foundations of the game are laid out by a PGA Professional.