Paul Cutler starts his quest for glory this morning in the English Open Stroke Play championship for the Brabazon Trophy at Burnham and Berrow on the Somerset coast.
The 22-year-old Irish Close champion and Walker Cup hopeful from Portstewart, who was bitterly disappointed not to get beyond the last 16 in the British Amateur Championship last week, will attempt to take a huge stride towards the trans-Atlantic battle in Aberdeen in September.
He lines up in the opening round alongside English pair David Clarkson and Craig Hinton hoping to reproduce the sort of form that won him the Lytham Trophy last year.
Rathmore's Alan Dunbar surprisingly failed to qualify in the Amateur and he will be aiming to kick-start his season.
Carlow's John Greene, Reeve Whitson of Mourne and Barry Anderson of County Sligo are among the other Irishmen bidding for glory in one of the toughest stroke-play events in the amateur calendar.
Scotsman Michael Stewart, runner-up in the Amateur Championship last Saturday, will start as one of the favourites for the Brabazon while Darren Wright defends the title he won at Royal Liverpool last year.