A GOLF-mad Droitwich student is following in the footsteps of Nick Faldo after being offered a place at two of the country's top golf academies.

Sixteen-year-old Ben Hodgetts, a pupil at Droitwich Spa High School, won a competition at Bristol's Filton College - where golf stars Justin Rose and Ian Poulter trained.

As a result, the judges were so impressed with his ability they offered him a place at the academy training with the England captain from the last year of the under 19s.

But Ben, who has a 2.5 handicap and plays at the Vale, Evesham, is in a pleasant dilemma after being offered a place at the prestigious Hartpury Golf Academy as well.

"I haven't decided which offer to take up yet, but it's great to have the choice," said Ben, who lives in Hanbury Park.

Hartpury scouts told him they wanted to take on his training and development for the next two years, when Ben will eat, sleep and breathe golf.

After the two years he would then be sent to the Belfry to complete three years in order to achieve the PGA (Professional Golf Association) coaching license.

This would turn Ben into a professional. During the three years Ben will be given the chance to make yet a further leap - the European tour.

"I just want to play golf and nothing else," said Ben, who began playing golf seriously four years ago following a football injury.

"I would love to follow in the footsteps of Nick Faldo.

"At Hartpury, I would be studying golf 24-7, learning about the body and ways of handling the mind, whereas at Filton I could also study for a sports degree as well."

Ben will be taking his GCSEs this summer and will have to notify the academies of his decision by September.