RETURN OF THE ANTI HERO...
Our Golf Correspondent reports..
It is some years now since Snopper graced the fairways, bunkers, woods and assorted rough of Poult Wood Golf Complex at nearby Tonbridge. His absence has been due to factors such as dodgy knees, erratic hips, burgeoning bunions and a marked disenchantment with the Royal and Ancient game which seemed over the years to show itself in what can only be described as a battle of wills between his limited abilities and the Rules of the game.
So it was with some surprise that we found him yesterday on Poult Wood`s nine-hole course, cutting an uninspiring figure as he dragged his trolley up and down the hilly course. Now you would have imagined that his `comeback` - if such a term can be used in this context - might have encouraged him to invest in some new equipment. We discovered that this was, in fact, the second visit he has made recently and he explained that he had experienced problems in his earlier round by leaving his trolley at home and staggering around with his bag over his shoulder which became rather tiresome given his age and physical limitations.
"Trouble is," he explained, "I`ve had this trolley for years but as it`s been in the shed for so long, the wheels start coming off when I drag it around. So I`ve restricted my equipment to just a few clubs and only 12 balls so as to make it lighter for the trolley to cope with." Decisions he came to regret, however, as a number of his supply of balls were ceremoniously consigned to the aforementioned bunkers, woods and assorted rough never to be seen again; but he put this down to his limited range of clubs - a 4-wood, a 7-iron (which actually belongs to his neighbour, Mr. Slightly,) a pitching wedge and putter - perhaps not the best assortment to tackle this daunting challenge.
There was one bright spot, however, when he allegedly parred the par-3 seventh but neither this nor the rest of his round can be verified as he forgot to pick up a scorecard from the clubhouse. He seemed quite satisfied with his afternoon efforts, however, and comforted himself with Glenn Gould`s well-worn homily which says all you need to know about Snopper and the Royal and Ancient game:-