Stirling golf scholar qualifies for The Open

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Graeme Robertson pictured after qualifying for The Open 2023.
Stirling scholar Graeme Robertson has qualified for The Open 2023 (image by Dundonald Links).

Former University of Stirling golf scholar Graeme Robertson will compete in The Open Championship later this month after securing his spot in Final Qualifying.

Robertson, 35, from Falkirk, graduated from the University’s high-performance golf programme in 2013 and, following a break from the sport, turned professional two years ago.

He is now set for the biggest week of his life after qualifying for the 151st Open, which will take place at the Royal Liverpool Golf Course at Hoylake, on the Wirral, between 20 and 23 July.

Robertson secured one of the last four spots after an impressive performance in Final Qualifying at Dundonald Links, Ayrshire, on Tuesday (4 July). He holed from almost 40ft to edge out Craig Ross on the fifth play-off hole – cementing his place at the major.


“It’s a dream come true,” Robertson said.

“I did it the hard way and I’m waiting for it to sink in. Unbelievable. I was thinking about Hoylake all the way round. Non-stop. I still can’t believe it is going to happen. I’m getting old. It’s a dream.”

Robertson studied BA (Hons) Sports Studies at the University between 2008 and 2013. He was one of the country’s top amateur golfers, however, put his career on hold following the birth of his daughter and took up a job as a salesperson in the building trade. Following the break, he decided to turn professional in 2021, then aged 33 – and his efforts on the course are now paying off.

“I played golf as an amateur to a good level and then stopped it for six or seven years and worked full-time and didn't play a lot of golf,” he said. “I'm just coming back to it so if you had said to me when I was sitting behind a computer desk 7:30 to 5, Monday to Friday, that I would be playing in The Open there's no way I would have believed it.

“It hasn't quite sunk in yet but it feels good. I can't wait for it to happen.”


Today, Robertson supports the University’s high-performance golf programme, led by his namesake Dean Robertson.

Dean Robertson said: “I am absolutely delighted for Graeme – he is being deservedly rewarded for his outstanding talent and dedication to his sport.

“We wish him all the best at The Open later this month and will be watching eagerly to see how he gets on as he competes at the top of the game. I believe Hoylake is a course that is well suited to Graeme's game and one he can do well at.”

David Bond, Head of Performance Sport at the University of Stirling, said: “Congratulations to Graeme on qualifying for The Open. On behalf of everyone at the University of Stirling, we wish Graeme the very best of luck as he pits himself against the world’s top golfers.

“We are incredibly proud of Graeme’s achievements, and his qualification for a golfing major demonstrates the opportunities that are unlocked through the pursuit of a sports scholarship at the University of Stirling, Scotland’s University for Sporting Excellence.”

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