Captain’s year caught up in Covid-19 crisis

TONY Brown declared that everybody will remember his year as captain at Stamford Golf Club because it coincided with coronavirus.

The 71-year-old from Copley was disappointed when golf courses were shut as part of the Government’s lockdown.

He said: “We couldn’t understand why the decision was taken. If two people play together it is quite easy to apply social distancing.

“You see people out jogging and riding bikes and they are closer than anybody playing golf.

“It is what it is and the club is managing to get by. We have two ground staff maintaining the course for when the restrictions are lifted.”

Tony, a retired manager for a kitchen furniture manufacturer, is in his 35th year at Stamford.

He turned to golf at the age of 36 when his football playing days ended – he was a left back for Brushes Rangers, Stalybridge Labour Club and Middleton Labour Club often playing on Saturday and Sunday.

He began playing the occasional game of golf with his brother Kevin while another relative was a member at Stamford.

He initially played on a pay and play basis for several months before deciding to become a member.

Tony plays off 20, though his handicap has been as low as 12.

He has never won a major but finished runner-up in the Lowe Trophy and Wood Bowl.

Tony recalled being in a triple tie for top spot in the Lowe Trophy.

“In those days there wasn’t a card play-off or play-off. It was decided which of the three of us had the best score in the next medal competition and I was third,” he said.

Tony also captained the rabbits team for a number of years but finished last year “to give the younger players a chance”.

He has had two holes in one, one at Stamford when he won a watch from the database site HowDidIDo and the other while on a trip to Whitchurch in Shropshire.

Tony, who has served on Stamford’s council and handicaps committee, has chosen Willow Wood Hospice as his charity for the year.

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