A TEAM of East Lothian junior golfers have returned home from an incredible 10-day trip to the ‘cradle of American golf’.

The 10 young golfers were selected due to their performances in the county’s junior league and visited the world-famous Pinehurst Golf Resort, North Carolina to take part in a number of events.

Firstly, the youngsters took on Pinehurst No. 2 – host course for the 2014 US Open – in a friendly match against the local Pinecrest High School, which the hosts won 5-0 despite the best efforts of the East Lothian contingent.

The visiting team, led by Dave Warren, league secretary, and coach Ric Foulner, presented a quaich to their hosts named after Duncan McLean, who died suddenly from a brain tumour at the age of 22 in 2016.

Duncan was a former Gullane Golf Club member and ex-East Lothian junior.

Both sets of players then travelled to Pinehurst Pizzas, where they had a meal and gifts were exchanged between the two sides.

A few days later, the East Lothian players competed in an open tournament held over both Pinehurst No. 1 and No. 2. Pinehurst boasts some of the most historic courses in the States.

The travelling players fared much better, with an outstanding performance from William Ladbrooke of Gullane Golf Club, who scored 77 and 73, missing out for the main prize by only two strokes.

Jack McDonald (Haddington) was a further three shots behind in joint third, with scores of 81 and 72.

James Morgan of Musselburgh GC was a further stroke behind in joint fifth place. Sadly, Lewis Irvine had a shoulder injury so he withdrew from the second round.

Warren told Courier Sport: “The hospitality of the residents of Pinehurst was superb and the team received several invites out to dinner at their homes.

“The planning for the next such event will soon start.”

The full squad is pictured in front of the 18th green of Pinehurst No. 2. From left: Ric Foulner (coach, Tantallon), Liam Currid (Gullane), Jack McDonald (Haddington), Lewis Hannah (Musselburgh), James Morgan (Longniddry), Josh Grahame (Craigielaw), Jack Noon (Musselburgh), Harry Rogan (Haddington), William Ladbrooke (Gullane), Lewis Irvine (Craigielaw), Ross Lunn (Glen) and Dave Warren (league secretary).