This Golfer has Spent Decades Trying to qualify for the Open

Claret Jug won't be lifted in St. Andrews, Scotland, until Sunday, English golfer Matt Ford has already achieved a life-changing triumph.

The 44-year-old has played in over 280 events and hit tens of thousands of strokes, yet on Thursday, when he drives off the first tee at the Old Course.

Ford became a professional in 2003, but he first tried to qualify for The Open as an amateur.

They included Trevor Immelman's qualifying playoff loss to the eventual Masters champion.

According to Ford, who told CNN, "I tried to work out the other day actually, how many times I've tried," the number of unsuccessful attempts totals 24.

Ford, a professional footballer's son, was raised in Swindon, England, and aspired to be like his father.

He just picked up a club for the first time at age 10, he didn't fully commit to golf until he was 18, had graduated from high school.

Ford stated, "I liked football, but it was also so lonely, whereas golf is just you and the ball."

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