NORTHENDEN Golf Club were great hosts for for the Men’s Mersey Shield which has been played for over the last 75 years by Chorlton, Didsbury, Northenden, Sale and Withington Golf Clubs.
Northenden hosted the first competition in 1947 and 75 years on provided an excellent course, great organisation on and off the course, pleasant weather and fine clubhouse service.
The competition sees the top six scores from the BB Stableford aggregated to provide the winning club.
There was a full field playing from 7.30 am and finishing at 8.30 pm with plenty of hot scoring.
Northenden were given an early boost by Lee Partington and Gareth Bannister with a best of the day 47 and they were given solid support throughout the day to keep their lead.
Club legends Cammie Stewart and Chris Harrison added 44, matched by Ian Stanley and Stephen Arnold with 42-pointers coming from Andy Johnson and Jim Kerrigan, Joe Fitzgibbon and Peter Kirrane and Garry McDaid and Eamon Dolan for a winning score of 261.
A late flourish from Didsbury by Phil Houghton and Mark Helsby 45 , moved them into second place, three behind Northenden and three more than Withington.
Chorlton finished with 250, two more than Sale.
Lee Partington and Gareth Bannister won the top pair prize with 47 ahead of Mike Serrage and Martin Caddick (Didsbury) 46 and Pat McKendry and Stephen Bradbury (Withington) 45, Stan Devlin and Tim Tighe (Sale) 45 and Phil Houghton and Mark Helsby 45.
Chorlton’s top pair were Scott Meakin and Robert Bloomfield 43.
Another highlight on the day was a hole in one by Didsbury star Dave Young on the 15th hole.
He hit a true four iron into the cup on the tricky 180 yard hole to delight his partner Roger Foxley and playing partners Brian Baker and David Silvester (Withington).
It is Dave’s second ace this year and his fifth overall.
His previous ones were over 30 years ago at St Annes Old Links and on the sixth at Didsbury.
He also aced the sixth at Didsbury in April 2022 and in May 2023.
Dave said: “Two holes in one this year is not as good as City winning the treble!”
The only previous aces in the Mersey Shield came in 1973 on the fourth hole at Northenden from Peter Busby (Withington) who went on with his partner Sid Taylor to post 49 points which remained a Mersey Shield record for many years.
And in 1993 Chris Houfe (Withington) aced the 11th at Sale.
Didsbury Captain Martin Murray presented the Mersey Shield to Northenden Captain Paul Johnson and gave due thanks to all at Northenden for giving everyone a great day of golf and his thoughts were echoed by Paul.
Northdenden Lady Captain Tricia Booth presented the top Northenden players with their trophies to conclude another memorable Mersey Shield competition.
Copy & images: Geoff Garnett