HAVING one of your pupils vying for a tournament victory would be enough of a pleasure for any golf coach, but Wiltshire swing guru Simon Shanks found himself living the excitement twice over at the British Masters at Walton Heath on Sunday.

While Shanks’ long-time charge Jordan Smith, from Derry Hill, continued his improvement in the 2018 European Tour season by finishing tied third, Shanks was able to enjoy the triumphant fruits of his labours as Eddie Pepperell lifted the title.

Pepperell linked up with Warminster mentor Shanks prior to Qatar Masters in February - an event the Oxfordshire player went on to win before adding a runners-up finish in the Scottish Open this summer and a tie for sixth in the Open.

His latest win takes Pepperell into the world’s top 35 and almost certainly secures a Masters debut at Augusta in 2019 and Shanks, who works out of the Bowood Golf Resort near Derry Hill, admits the 27 year old’s progress has been stellar.

“I’ve been working with Jordan (Smith) for 12 years now and only with Eddie this year but it’s great having two in top three and obviously Eddie winning was amazing,’’ he told the Gazette & Herald.

“I’d met Eddie last year at one of the tournaments with Jordan. We went out to dinner together and the chat moved on to the golf swing. I didn’t think anything more of it then I got the message would I mind having a look at Eddie’s swing on the Monday morning of Qatar.

“That week ended well, he got it together and won and he’s gone on to have numerous top 10s and sixth at the Open and has now picked up a second win.

“He’s someone who is a super-talented guy and has had his ups and downs in this game. He lost his (European Tour) card in 2016 and now he’s 33rd in the world and seventh in the Race to Dubai and he’s turned it around.

“He’s got a strong head on him and hopefully I’ve gone some way to helping him with his game to get him back where he belongs.’’

Shanks was particularly pleased to see an aspect of the game the two had been working on pay off down the closing stretch at Walton Heath.

“He (Pepperell) has not been the best driver of the ball but he’s always been really good with his irons and a solid putter,’’ he added. “He’s now hitting driver off the tee a lot more than he’s ever done and particularly up the last at Walton Heath, it’s something he wouldn’t have trusted a driver off the last tee to win a tournament but he needed to hit the shot and he did.

“As a coach it’s nice to see something you’ve worked on come off under pressure, with a big tournament on the line.

“It’s fantastic. I’m chuffed to be able to work with such talented guys and two such strong young English players.

“They have got good careers in front of them and it’s a dream to be able to work with guys like that.’’