One hole of a return after injury lay-off
Richard Silman made a spectacular return to tournament golf by firing a hole-in-one in his first event back after a lengthy injury lay-off.
The Tenterden Golf Club professional has been severely hampered by persistent back and hip problems, and hadn’t played competitively for nine months before lining up at the Golfbreaks.com PGA Fourball Championship East qualifier at Bush Hill Park.
He and his partner Simon Sheppard (Bishop’s Stortford) finished in a tie for third place on 64 (-6), with the Kent man shooting five birdies and an eagle, which came courtesy of his ace, at the 136-yard 16th.
He admitted his main satisfaction came from just being able to play pain-free again, but said he couldn’t deny that his hole-in-one made the occasion even sweeter. It was his third competitive ace, and remarkably his 12th in total.
Silman, who turned 44 just three days before the event, added: “I’ve spent the last two or three years thinking I’m not going to finish a round of golf, thinking I’d play four or five holes and then make a swing and it would finish my day.
“I hadn’t really been expecting too much (at Bush Hill) but I’ve now really brightened my week and I feel as if I can kick on from here.”
Silman’s professional career spans 24 years, having previously played at Bishop’s Stortford, Royal Cinque Ports and Hartsbourne (Hertfordshire), but he admits he began to wonder if he would ever cure his injury problems.
He added: “I’ve been struggling for maybe two to three years with back and hip problems and could not quite get to the bottom of it.