The weight of expectation, the hefty burden of a nation’s hopes on the shoulders, the fevered clamour of anticipation, the mouth-frothing frenzy of excitement, the inevitable, crushing anti-climax? And that’s just the brow-mopping fervour of emotion that’s generated as this scribe winkles out the Tuesday column. The build up to Scotland’s opening Euro2020 game, meanwhile, was marginally more delirious with the kind of impassioned outpourings that just about whipped up a tidal surge in the River Clyde.

With children across this enraptured land allowed to watch yesterday’s hoopla at Hampden during class time, I've heard pupils often get to skip lessons to absorb these weekly wafflings, presumably as a salutary reminder to stick in at school or face the sombre prospect of a lifetime condemned to typing incoherent ramblings, gobbledygook and mumbo jumbo.

On the subject of school-related thingamabobs, the news that the European Tour’s qualifying school will not be going ahead again this season has caused considerable consternation among those on the lower rungs of the professional ladder.

The update seemed to be dropped in rather quietly, like a clandestine exchange of instructions being passed between two passing Secret Service agents in a dimly lit side street. Go on the tour’s website, for instance, and there’s a brief summary that says, “the qualifying school did not take place in 2020 and will not take place in 2021 either.”

With the coronavirus spanner still well and truly lodged in all manner of works, the tour has decided to create a “safety net” for its membership meaning nobody will lose their status from the top table at the end of the season. Promotion will still be on offer from the Challenge Tour but to create that aforementioned safety net, the qualifying school has been sacrificed again.

Given the logistical guddles that Covid-19 has created in competitive sport, and the expense of bio-bubbles, testing and the general rigmarole that needs to be put in place to keep things going, you can understand the decision. The world, after all, is still trying to muddle through an unprecedented, constantly changing and endlessly complex period of tumult and tragedy. There’s no simple, one-size-fits-all remedy and you’ll never please everybody.

For those trying to make headway in their chosen profession, though, the news that there will be another year without the chance of progression is about as welcome as an afternoon spent doing lateral flow tests.

The qualifying school has always been one of the great, come all ye democratic processes which offers hope and opportunity to varied walks of golfing life no matter how fanciful some of those ambitions may be. Take that away, and you take away much of what keeps driving players on.

Conor O’Neil, whose dad and uncle both took their own lives last year during a period of unimaginable anguish for the Glasgow man and his family, is well aware that there are far, far more important things than golf but he still conceded that the scrapping of the qualifying school was “demoralising” for those chipping away at the coalface of the third-tier of the professional scene.

O’Neil won his first PGA EuroPro Tour title last Friday on a circuit that was wiped out in 2020. He is now on course for a move up to the second-tier Challenge Tour through the EuroPro order of merit but the qualifying school always offered an alternative route and an enticing possibility of fast-tracking yourself to the top. In this game, you can’t afford to hang about. And simply being able to afford hanging about financially, when schedules in the lower reaches have been decimated, is no mean feat.

Those who don’t earn promotion from a third-tier tour could always try the q-school route to at least gain a step up. By making the cut in the six round final, for example, you are guaranteed a Challenge Tour ranking. Even getting to that point – there is a four round first stage and a four round second stage to negotiate - can be the kind of arduous task that would’ve had Hannibal turning to his legions and saying ‘sod this boys, we’ll just head back’. But where there’s a will there’s a way. For many at the moment, though, there’s now not a way, unfortunately.

The latest South African star, Garrick Higgo, won on the PGA Tour on Sunday night as he continued a rocketing rise that would send the gadgets and gizmos at Cape Canaveral haywire. A couple of years ago, he finished down in 64th in the qualifying school final but still gained a Challenge Tour exemption. The following year he won a dual-ranking event on that circuit to propel himself onto the main European Tour and, this year, he won twice in the space of a fortnight.

Now, the 22-year-old has conquered on the PGA Tour in just his second start and he’s 39th on the world rankings. Not everybody who goes through the qualifying school process is as supremely talented as Higgo, of course, but making the grade so spectacularly with the opportunities it initially gave him is another inspiring tale.

Getting on to the tour is hard enough at the best of times. For countless hopefuls and dreamers, it’s even harder now.