Norfolk Open champion Jack Yule unable to defend his title

Norfolk Open champion Jack Yule pictured with father and fellow competitor Iain at Thetford last yea

Norfolk Open champion Jack Yule pictured with father and fellow competitor Iain at Thetford last year Picture: THETFORD GC - Credit: Archant

Defending champion Jack Yule will be otherwise engaged when the Norfolk Open tees off at Hunstanton Golf Club next Thursday.

The 23-year-old King's Lynn professional is currently competing on the Europro Tour and is playing in the Prem Group Irish Masters next week.

Yule is currently 48th on the Order of Merit, thanks largely to a superb tied second finish in the Eagle Orchid Scottish Masters back in June, and will be looking for a good performance to cement his place in the end-of-season championship in Spain.

Yule was still an amateur when he won the Norfolk Open at Thetford last year, with rounds of 70 and 67 leaving him two clear of Bawburgh's Ben Rawsthorne, who took the professional title after rounds of 69 and 70.

Nic Cains of Swaffham finished third after two rounds of 71 and he will be one the favourites to lift the silverware this time around, with Rawsthorne also missing from the 62-strong line-up.

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Despite the absence of the top two in 2017 the field is still brimming with quality, with former European Tour player Andrew Marshall, who recently finished second in the British Par Three Championship at Nailcote Hall, challenging for his local title.

The field also includes regular East PGA competitior Chase Davies (Sprowston Manor) while the other pros taking part are Mark Allen (Eaton), Matthew Bacon (Costessey Park), Will Cross (Dereham), Charlie Bright (Sheringham), Tom Clements (Eaton), Alex Beckett (Bawburgh), Mark Spooner (Bawburgh), Tom Maxwell (Wensum Valley), Sam Cubitt (Dunston Hall), Neil Lythgoe (Royal Norwich), Ryan Pudney (Mundesley), Nick Lucas (Dunston Hall), Jason Groat (Denver), Mike Jubb (Sheringham), Lee Patterson (Royal Cromer), Sean Brady (Sprowston Manor), Gary Potter (Dunston Hall), Alex Holmes (Great Yarmouth & Caister), Craig Butler (Sprowston Manor) and Joe Lambert (Dunston Hall).

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There are also plenty of good amateurs in the field for what should be an intriguing competition.

Meanwhile, at Fakenham, Renee Dennis' annual presidents' day competition was won by Louise Hannant, Cheryl Lincoln, Merissa Hullmer, Vicky Cunningham and Brenda Townsend.

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