Age no barrier for champion grandad Alan Squires at Saddleworth

GOLDEN oldie Alan Squires proved age is no obstacle as he retained the club championship at Saddleworth Golf Club.

Alan Squires, left, receives his club championship trophy from captain Dean Jagger

The 68-year-old grandfather from Lees, who recently came down from a plus one handicap to scratch, can still give the club’s young guns a run for their money.

“I may be 30 yard shorter than them from the tee, but I can make up the distance with my chipping and putting,” he explained.

And that proved the case when, on the 36th and final hole, he sank a 25ft putt that forced a play off with his pal Nick Marner who was already in the clubhouse.

Marner went to congratulate Squires believing he had won, not realising Squires had bogeyed the 17th hole. Both finished on 145 gross.

In the play off, Squires had a let off at the first hole when Marner missed a six-foot putt to win.

But Squires sealed victory at the second hole after both players missed the green on the par three.

Squires’ chip was stone dead, but Marner was short and he missed the putt and it was all over.

He admitted it was not easy going head to head with his friend for victory in the major.

Squires attributed his success to club members pushing him to improve his game.

He explained: “It is not that easy to win competitions as there are a lot of good players at Saddleworth.

“They push you and you have got to play well to win so that gives you more satisfaction.”

Squires has only been a member at Saddleworth four years but has won the club championship the last two.

And while a member at nearby Oldham, he won their club championship a remarkable 23 times.

“It would have been more as I missed it for 12 years because I was playing for Lancashire or for England seniors,” he explained.

The 36 hole club championship was due to be completed on one day, but the second round was abandoned when heavy rain flooded the course.

They returned the next weekend when another deluge flooded the course and play was called off again so the players had to return a third time to complete the major.

Squires added one further objective is to shoot his age – 68 – this year.

Both players returned 145 with Squires (73 and 72) and Marner (72 and 73) as they finished four shots clear of third-placed Marcus Wray (74 and 75 for 149).

An 18-hole subsidiary nett medal was held as part of the club championship.

That was won by Joe Ridley (66) from second-placed Gary Banks (68) while Darren Smith (70) was third.

 

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