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Official breaks off from tournament to buy Champions League final ticket

WHAT is a chap to do when he is playing in a county golf tournament at a time when he needs to use his mobile phone to apply online for a ticket to watch his beloved Manchester City play in the Champions League final?

That was the situation Andrew Henshall found himself in when he reached the 15th green at Astbury in a Cheshire Union Life Members Meeting.

To make this Blues fan even more red faced, Andrew is the county chairman. But, hey, even the top brass have to bend the rules sometimes.

“I needed to get on the phone at precisely 5pm to apply for my ticket,” he said.

“So I asked my playing partners if I could putt out first then get on my phone and join them on the next tee.

“They said yes so I got the job done and now I am off to Portugal next Saturday to watch City play in their first ever final of the Champions League, or the European Cup as it used to be called.


“If the county executive chastises me for using my phone on the golf course, I shall just have to hope it was worth it.”

Meanwhile Astbury’s head greenkeeper Andy Brougham will be delighted to hear the county chairman’s verdict on his greens.

“They were fantastic,” said Andrew, a good judge of such matters given his name appears on several of the honours boards at his club, Wilmslow.

“It was lovely to putt on them because they were quick and true like all great courses should be.

“I have been playing in events at Astbury for around a quarter of a century and I have never seen the course in such a good condition.

“You can see the bunkers have had a lot of work done on them. I was particularly impressed by the work around the first tee and the way the new sandstone dry wall blended in so well with the surroundings and the stream at the third looked even more attractive than I remember it.


“The Cheshire Union are looking forward to playing the Cheshire Matchplay Championships at Astbury next year in the club’s centenary, and I am sure the elite players in the county will enjoy playing such a fine course.”

After the tournament, the county presented the club with a copy of the Cheshire Union centenary book.

The week before the county life members meeting, Astbury was the venue for a tournament organised by the Cheshire County Ladies Association.

“Hosting two county events in successive weeks, was a privilege and an enormous honour for our club,” said Astbury chairman Phil Richards.

The ladies’ event was a team stableford won by the home club and among the field was the county captain Frances Gell, another golfer who has been competing happily in events at Astbury for 25 years.


“The Astbury ladies could not do too much for us,” said Frances, a member at Bramhall.

“They laid on flowers in the Cheshire colours of yellow and blue and put a bowl of sweets in the locker room.

“I always enjoy playing Astbury. It is a challenging course but a fair course and so scenic with all those lovely views, which seem to have been opened up quite a bit by work on the course in recent years.”

Jill Sanders, secretary of the county ladies’ association, added: “The course was in excellent condition, especially the greens, and everyone we came across on the day was most welcoming.

“In particular it was appreciated Astbury provided a starter.”