Golf: Saffron Walden’s call for youth

17:02 18 February 2014

SWGC scratch captain Graham Goodman.

SWGC scratch captain Graham Goodman.

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Saffron Walden Golf Club scratch team start their pre-season with a home fixture against Bury St Edmonds next week.

Graham Goodman leads the team again this year following a triumphant 2013 in which the team won CAGU’s Goddard Cup for the first time and were promoted as champions back to Division 1.

Goodman said: “The triumphs of last year are now in the club’s history books as we now refocus for this year’s season.

“We have a number of pre-season games coming up including next week’s match and friendlies against Ely and Bourn to set us up to challenge for honours.

“The spine of the team is in place again and key players such as Mark Reeve, Olly Tuck, Richard Southall, Tom Duggan and Cam Brown have the potential to bring home a number of county honours this year, both individually and as a team.

“Our aim is to try and bring into the team at least one of the club juniors as this is the future of the club.”

Mark Jones, the new SWGC club captain, is also looking forward to his year in office - and his eyes set on helping the club become the best in the region.

“We’re delighted with the success achieved by the scratch team,” he said.

“It was an outstanding season and their success reflects the progress we are making as a golf club to make it one of the best courses and clubs in East Anglia.

“Most of the current scratch team came up through the junior ranks and clearly one of the aims going forward is to build the pipeline of juniors for the next generation of teams.”

Saffron Walden Golf Club is in a period of significant change, with a new professional Rob McNicholas taking over last autumn and a new general manager appointed to start his duties in March this year.

They aim to build on the sound building blocks put in by the previous team, changing with the times and taking the club forward.

“It is an exciting time for the club,” added Jones.

“We have a course to be proud of, which received accolades from far and wide last year, a catering facility which is used extensively by people and organisations in and around the area, and a membership which is thriving.

“The aim now is to build on our strengths, which includes promoting a golfing academy which can be used by members, schools and people new to the sport.

“We’ll also be reviewing the level of facilities within the clubhouse and will continue with the sensitive development of the course which has seen particular holes redesigned in recent years.”

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