A joint third-place finish at the Rolex Open has further boosted Callum Shinkwin’s hopes of securing a European Tour card for 2015 and the Bushey golfer says: “My game is really coming together”.

The 21-year-old carded an impressive 15-under-par score at last weekend’s Challenge Tour event, held in Geneva, Switzerland, which sealed third alongside Lasse Jensen.

He received €11,650 in prize money and is currently 19th in the Order of Merit – those inside top 15 places are awarded a European Tour card.

“Hopefully I can stay around that position and then continue to move up,” he said. “We’ve got a few big competitions coming up at the end of the year which have big purses.

“That could see someone jump up the rankings very quickly and I know if I don’t play well then I will drop.

“So it’s all up to me really. At the moment I am doing well and have earned €43,403 in prize money, the player in 15th is close to me on €47,750.

“What I have to do is to keep playing well and enjoying my golf. It’s what I’ve been doing so far and it’s served me well.”

Shinkwin’s result in Switzerland was his second consecutive top-ten finish. After making a slow star to life on the Challenge Tour, the Moor Park Golf Club player believes he has now discovered his best form.

He said: “I felt confident going into the Rolex Open because I have been playing quite well now for the last couple of months.

“My game is really coming together. It’s taken a little bit of time but it is my first year on the Challenge Tour so I expected that to a certain extent.

“I have had to get used to the travelling aspect as well. When I was an amateur it was a case of driving around the UK to compete at events, now I am flying across Europe every week.”

Shinkwin teed off at the Northern Ireland Open Challenge yesterday (Thursday) and, at the time of going to press, was level par after only three holes of his first round.

After a gruelling recent schedule, he plans to have a small break before taking part in several lucrative tournaments towards the end of the year.

He explained: “This will be my sixth event in the last seven weeks. I’ve made every cut in those six weeks as well so I tend to have just the one day back in England before I’ve got to fly out again.

“It’s not been easy doing that so after this event in Northern Ireland I am going to have two weeks off back at home.

“I’m looking forward to that, although after a week or so I know I will start to get bored again. I’ve got a lot of things planned for those two weeks though, so hopefully it’s not too bad.

“I want to have the small break before the end of the year because then I can hopefully do well at the bigger events, like the Kazakhstan Open, which has the biggest purse on the Challenge Tour.” Croxley Green’s Sam Little is also competing at the Northern Ireland Open and was due to tee off at 1.40pm yesterday.