Sports

Meet the Scottish ex-pro making Saudi Arabia’s rebel golf dream a reality

Seeking someplace inside the M25 with “the right kind of chimney pots” for a excessive finish membership to succeed, he discovered 190 acres nestled between leafy St Albans and Leverstock Green in Hertfordshire in 2007 and managed to purchase the website in 2010. He now has an possibility on an additional 90 acres so as to add a nine-hole course.

The undulating fairways, which Evans helped to design himself (some with Scotch pine borders, naturally) are largely all the way down to the truth the website was as soon as a dumping floor for native builders. 

“A lot of inert material came in here before we bought it. But you know, I’m a golf man so we bought it with the intention of building a golf course. The good thing about all that material is it gave you the chance to create all the drama of the course.”

“It’s quite sad really, I was dreaming at night about bunkers,” he jokes. Evans even did a few of the digging himself.

After “a lot of blood, sweat and tears”, the course opened in 2013, with the clubhouse opening three years later. Centurion now boasts greater than 750 members, with the annual full subscription a hefty £3,300. 

‘What we’re attempting to do is assist the sport evolve’

Although he resists descriptions like “luxury” and “exclusive”, Evans concedes that you can not succeed with a membership like Centurion too removed from the M25. 

He additionally accepts that the reasonably steep ticket costs for the LIV occasion, with floor passes beginning at £67.55, had been “the one element they got wrong”.

He explains: “They probably announced the ticket prices and got the cart before the horse, before the players were announced. But it’s going to be a great day out. It’s not just golf – there are going to be concerts in the evening so it could end up being good value.”

Performers together with James Morrison and Craig David have been lined up whereas under-15s are going to be admitted at no cost. A couple of complimentary tickets are additionally going to be handed out domestically. “I think you’ll find that everyone that wants to come here is going to be able to get here,” insists Evans.

He additionally hopes it can reinvigorate the youth sport. “In an ideal world, you’d get it back on the school curriculum,” he says. “You know, golf in Scotland and Northern Ireland is a totally different sport than down right here. We wrestle to get it on the again pages in England however there may be an abundance of golf on the market that may cater for everybody. 

“With Covid there was a renaissance of golf – we’ve got to keep up that momentum. A lot of golfers live in the past. What we’re really trying to do here is help the sport to evolve.”

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