Cue star Davis is just a talented mug
PUBLISHED: 13:24 10 July 2001 | UPDATED: 10:20 03 March 2010
GOLF: WHEN it comes to golf, Steve Davis, six times world snooker champion, describes himself as "a talented mug." Playing off a 21 handicap, there is nobody keener than Steve on the game, and he told me that he was desperately trying to get better.
WHEN it comes to golf, Steve Davis, six times world snooker champion, describes himself as "a talented mug."
Playing off a 21 handicap, there is nobody keener than Steve on the game, and he told me that he was desperately trying to get better.
We were talking at Ipswich Golf Club last Friday where Steve was representing his home club Warley Park in the Daily Star Team of Four Championship.
Steve said: "I've been playing celebrity golf since 1980, but now I've started to take it seriously, it's almost dangerous!
"Chris Goddard, the professional at Romford, has been giving me lessons, but golf is a totally different game from playing snooker. The only link between the two games is the putting tempo. The delivery of the snooker cue is not so challenging as the golf swing.
"It's only in the past 18 months have I tried to understand what the golf swing is really all about."
Steve does not use woods, and said candidly: "I'm better off when I carry about three clubs in my bag."
Steve was not the only celebrity playing in the match at Purdis Heath. Barry Hearn, the man who really put snooker on the map, was part of the Matchroom (Warley Park) team that played the Purdis Boys (Ipswich GC) that is captained by David Mann.
Barry, like Steve, is working hard on his golf, a game in which he has a big business interest.
"I'm manager of 14 players on the European and Challenge Tours, but I have only been playing the game seriously myself for the last three years.
"Recently I was cut from 21 to 20 which I thought was a bit hard, but I took it like a man!"
Barry and Steve play a great deal of golf together and Barry said: "It's normally me owing him."
One of Barry's other hat is chairman of Third Division Leyton Orient who reached last season's play-off final before losing to Blackpool in Cardiff.
"We had a good season," said Barry " and even made money. Not many clubs can say that. David Sheepshanks has been an inspiration to me for what he's done at Ipswich."
It is many years since Steve Davis was a regular visitor to Ipswich for the Tolly Cobbold Snooker Championship that used to be held at the Corn Exchange.
I remember sitting one afternoon in the late 1970's with Steve watching an afternoon match, and he had an instant recall of the tournament.
"I used to enjoy the Tolly event and it's a pity it wasn't able to continue," he said.
As far as the golf is concerned, the Matchroom team that also included Barry's son Edward and Luke Riches, press officer for Matchroom snooker, were beaten by the Ipswich quartet.
Steve and Luke went down by three holes to Mark Lewis and Peter Shepherd while Ewan Dodds and David Mann finished six up against the Hearns.
David said: "It was a fun day's golf. Barry Hearn's a real character and we had a very enjoyable game. The Matchroom boys loved the course and they said they would come back in the winter to have another game."
The format is five teams in regional sections with the winners going through to four semi-finals. The winners of those then go to Spain in the first week of December for the finals.
Ipswich with wins under their belts against Royal Norwich and Warley Park, are hopeful of topping their group after they have played the other two teams, Gorleston and Chigwell.