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lowest rounds of golf

The most remarkable scorecard you’ll ever see

Ryan Brooks' ridiculous round at Whittington Heath included a hole-in-one, 10 birdies, and an eagle to finish it off
 

It’s one of the lowest rounds of golf on record. The sort you should only really shoot in a video game. “We were just laughing,” admits Ryan Brooks. “It was like PS4.”

The Clutch Tour pro has played at Whittington Heath since his junior days, but even he couldn’t believe the putts kept dropping as he shot an incredible 14-under-par 56 at the Staffordshire course earlier this month.

He made 10 birdies, an eagle at the last and even fired in a hole-in-one – at the 4th – as he put together a flawless round off the club’s back tees.

Brooks, who got up to +4 before turning pro last September, negotiated the front nine in just 27 shots before finishing birdie, birdie, eagle on the back for 29 and a total that will surely never be beaten at the Harry Colt layout.

“I shot 60 but that was off winter tees,” he said of his previous low. “It was pretty ridiculous.”

Playing in a fourball, which included his coach Liam James, Brooks added: “I birdied the first couple. We got to the 4th, I teed off first, hit 9-iron and it went straight over.

“We’ve got a little bank at the back of the hole and it rolled back in. I was 5-under through four and my putting was just ridiculous.”

What made that shot all the more special was a couple of years ago he took on a European Tour-style charity challenge at the same short hole – trying to get an ace in as few shots as possible. He took 716 to make it then.

“I just kept giving myself loads of chances and seemed to just hole them,” he added looking back at the rest of the round.

“You go into a bit of positive mode. You don’t think you could possibly hit a bad shot. Everything is where you see it, where you hit it, and get it on the green. You have days now and then where you don’t think you can miss.

“I actually missed a six-footer on the 11th for a birdie. I chipped in for birdie on the 12th and missed another six-footer on the 14th.

“(But) It was eight- to 10-foot on 16, a 20-footer on 17 and then another 20-footer on the last. We were just laughing.”

Brooks, who is on the hunt for sponsorship, has put together some good Clutch Tour performances since the restart, including a top 10 at the Shire, and is hoping to find his way onto the EuroPro Tour in the near future.

But, like most players on the mini-tours, he is in a bit of limbo as the coronavirus pandemic continues to disrupt sport.

“I’m going to play a couple of Jamega Tour events, just to play some two-dayers,” he explained. “There’s no European Tour Q-School this year, so I can’t go to that. It’s like we’ve lost a year at the moment.

“It would have been nice to play that stuff but I suppose you’ve just got to get used to playing against other pros as well, which is obviously better than amateur.

“If you can compete against those guys then I think that’s half the battle.”

Have you heard of a score that can match Ryan Brooks’ round? Let me know in the comments, or tweet me.

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Steve Carroll

Steve Carroll

A journalist for 25 years, Steve has been immersed in club golf for almost as long. A former club captain, he has passed the Level 3 Rules of Golf exam with distinction having attended the R&A's prestigious Tournament Administrators and Referees Seminar.

Steve has officiated at a host of high-profile tournaments, including Open Regional Qualifying, PGA Fourball Championship, English Men's Senior Amateur, and the North of England Amateur Championship. In 2023, he made his international debut as part of the team that refereed England vs Switzerland U16 girls.

A part of NCG's Top 100s panel, Steve has a particular love of links golf and is frantically trying to restore his single-figure handicap. He currently floats at around 11.

Steve plays at Close House, in Newcastle, and York GC, where he is a member of the club's matches and competitions committee and referees the annual 36-hole scratch York Rose Bowl.

Having studied history at Newcastle University, he became a journalist having passed his NTCJ exams at Darlington College of Technology.

What's in Steve's bag: TaylorMade Stealth 2 driver, 3-wood, and hybrids; TaylorMade Stealth 2 irons; TaylorMade Hi-Toe, Ping ChipR, Sik Putter.

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