BASINGSTOKE golfer Stuart Archibald’s quest to reach The Open ended in disappointment as he was struck down by a back injury at Final Qualifying.

The Worting man got the call to play in Final Qualifying at Hillside over the weekend and made the trip to Lancashire yesterday, but he began suffering shooting pains in his lower back during a practice round.

The problem continued into today’s event, preventing him from turning properly and making it a struggle to walk at times.

Archibald completed his first round in 74 (+2), a score that left him eight shots behind the leaders and six outside the top-three position needed to qualify at the halfway stage.

With his back injury getting worse, Archibald took the tough decision to withdraw.

“I am gutted and annoyed that my back flared up at this time, when I was away from home and unable to visit my physio,” he said. “It’s so frustrating because that golf course really suited me. I really feel that if I ever had a chance of getting to The Open, that was it.

“I am hoping that it is the same problem that I have always had and a bit of physio will clear any trapped nerves so I am okay after a couple of weeks’ rest.”