Disabled Golf played host at The Wiltshire GC to the second ‘home countries’ international event for disabled and impaired golfers with England defending last year’s win against Wales, playing for The Oldfield Trophy on the 24/25th August 2014.
The Oldfield Trophy is a stunning piece of artwork, named after the blacksmith’s who forged the trophy from recycled golf irons atop a block of marble, and daffodil and rose flowers created in brass to represent the two countries.
Many different disabilities were represented from amputees, one arm, arthritis, MS and stroke survivors and came from as far afield as Yorkshire, Cheshire, Hampshire, Essex and Berkshire and South/West Wales.
Sunday 24th August consisted of six fourballs played on the excellent golf course in excellent conditions, after some close matches England finished the day with a 4-2 lead.
It was all to play for on day 2 with 12 points available in the singles.
The weather on Monday was awful with persistent rain, but it didn’t dampen the enthusiasm of the players.
Especially Team England who won the Singles 8-4 thus retaining the Oldfield Trophy won previously at Pontypridd in 2013 – so the final score was ENGLAND 12 – WALES 6.
Disabled Golf Association – What they said …
Graeme Robertson, non-playing captain of the English Team “I am very proud of the team with their performance/sportsmanship and the camaraderie with the Welsh on and off the course was superb. Many players had family supporting which added to the atmosphere. It takes 2 teams to have a good match, but there can only be one winner – but the real winner was disabled golf, it was great to see guys with different disabilities playing with/against each other enjoying the game we all love.”
Haydn Barrell, Director at The Wiltshire “The Wiltshire Hotel Golf & Leisure Club was very privileged to host the recent Disabled Golf Association’s England vs Wales match. The skill, determination and good humour of all these players was wonderful to behold and it was a great pleasure to have them staying and playing at our facility. We are certainly looking forward to getting involved in any future tournaments or matches where possible. We wish them all the best for the future.”
Sue Robertson, Project Manager for international events at DGA “Many thanks for all at The Witshire for making our event so successful; the course, food, facilities and especially the welcome/service we received was excellent. Head Pro Marc McCracken and his grounds staff are to be congratulated on the quality of this excellent and challenging course. Glenbrae once again pulled out all the stops to provide polo shirts for Team England embroidered with the event logo; both teams looked very smart.”
Disabled Golf goes from strength to strength …
Next month (September 2104) sees The Shire play host to the next home countries international, a 3-day Ryder Cup styled event, with England (DGA) again defending last year’s win, and Scotland (represented by SDGP) playing for the AULD ENEMIES CUP Monday 15th-Wednesday 17th September 2014.
DGA is a pan-disability, not-for-profit organization, membership is free and organises events all over the country.
About the Disabled Golf Association …
The main aim is to promote the game of golf as a pathway to a healthier lifestyle and greater social inclusion for those who are disabled, irrespective of age, gender or disability.
This includes providing the means to make it easier for the disabled player to access the facilities both on and off the course.
They aim to provide information about equipment to permit that increased accessibility, this can be done by means of single-seater buggies specifically designed for the disabled player, bespoke club and prosthetic adaptation as well as supplying professional coaching at events from those who have been trained to teach the sport.
In addition, they are keen to attract not only those who have played in the past prior to an illness or injury, but also those who have never played the sport and are seeking the unique benefits of a sport which can be played by anyone either alone against the course, or in teams against each other.
They look to provide a playing environment where the clubs are disabled friendly and accessible and the courses are pre-vetted to ensure that they are capable of being played by those with limited mobility.
By assisting in the launching of coaching academies and training sessions throughout the UK from our base in Gloucestershire, they plan to provide information on courses, equipment and holiday resorts for the disabled golfer.
And hope to offer all of these benefits to their members and others but also employment for those in the area who are disabled and can join us.
In 2014, they have events scheduled every week of the season in England – with 6 courses selected for the BGL Race to Burhill, 11 courses including a large number of Crown courses participating in the Order of Merit (OOM).
And plenty more excellent courses providing Disabled Golf Association local events where they take golf to the places where people live; they also have a good number of charity events planned throughout the season having been chosen as many Captain and Lady Captain charities in 2014.
They are supported by brands like BGL, Titleist, Glenbrae and from MASS and added Crown Golf as supporters for DGA.
New for 2014 is a partnership with IGEM South West and with PACE Rehabilitation.
Disabled Golf Association also have an ongoing partnership with the Motor Accident Solicitors Society (MASS), who have chosen DGA as their charity of choice. This will bring much-needed funding to support the infrastructure of the organisation.
By Ian Mullins