The Niggle: What’s your best golfing memory?

The Scoop

The NCG team relive some of their fondest memories on the golf course...

JM: Have to admit my favourite golfing memory is nothing about ability but more stupidity.

Whilst playing Stableford at Royal Liverpool (a good enough memory by itself), I proceeded to fall into the left green side bunker on the 9th green.

I had just holed for a 10 foot bogey to go one behind and was making a surge on the pack. Whilst walking off the elevated green I was eyeing down my competitor (Robert DeNiro Style in ‘Meet the Fockers’) and not watching where I was walking. This inevitably led to me falling straight down in to a 7 foot deep bunker.

To top it all off, with my hair all over the place and still a bit dazed about what had just happened, I felt it necessary to rake the bunker to try and clear a little of my embarrassment up – whilst everyone else was rolling around the green with laughter.

DM: My favourite golfing memories, apart from the time I made a par on the 2nd at the Ailsa, aged 10 or 11, after hitting three successive 5 woods to reach the green, are all about the build-up to the first trip of the season.

I love those weeks in March when: the days are getting longer; evenings are spent in increasingly hopeful range sessions; you book in a few lessons; you have a new hybrid in the bag; you have held back a new StaSof glove; you are thinking about unveiling a new top with a stripe of colour on it; you are marking up your balls; you are studying course guides of obscure quasi-links in Wales; you put things in your diary like ‘June Medal’; you watch the WGC at Doral; you put another Masters bet on (usually Stewart Cink) most days.

The reality never quite lives up to it but the hope never dies.

MT: My favourite golfing memory is turning up at the Old Course at St Andrews at 6am on the sleeper train and seeing the 1st and 18th for the first time as a 16-year-old. The same year two of us went to Heathrow on a Monday night to welcome back the Ryder Cup team who had just won for the first time in the States. Woosnam, Faldo, Langer, Darcy and Lyle came through first and then Seve and Jacklin emerged with the trophy and 200 people, in a very small arrivals lounge, went bananas.

JS: Mine would have to be what is now widely referred to (among four people) as the Miracle of Fiddler’s Ferry. My playing partner and I were giving away far too many shots and found ourselves three down with four to play.

On the par-3 15th my partner thinned his 100 yards over the back while us three were all on the green. I knew if my birdie putt didn’t go in it was game over. But when that 12 footer rolled in it swung the momentum our way. My partner came in on 16 and I made another birdie at the driveable par-4 17th. All square at the last, there was only ever going to be one winner.

Clubhouse pints have never tasted so sweet.

TL: Reaching the final of the foursomes at Headingley with Mark Townsend, I massively let him down in the final and he hasn’t liked me since.

Me and a fellow Birmingham native panning Dan Murphy & James Savage 3 – 0 in Florida last year.

A round of 72 at Turnberry.

But Jamie falling into the bunker is the funniest thing I’ve seen on a golf course. Or Ben Ursell soiling himself at Staverton Park on the 7th green.

JB: Almost overturning a golf buggy on a family holiday in the Algarve when I was 16. I was playing a round with my dad and I was behind the wheel of the buggy when I decided to tackle a steep path at full pelt. I hit the curb at the top of the path and the buggy was on two wheels. My swearing dad managed to save the buggy from toppling over by grabbing the steering wheel and I was subsequently shoved out of the driving seat. Hilarious in hindsight but not so much when I was being scolded.

CM: My best memory would probably have to be winning on our annual golf pilgrimage last year at Hollins Hall in Bradford. After a few top 3’s over the past few years, draining a 15-foot par putt at the last hole to win by one point made the drive home extremely enjoyable.


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