Diss golfer Stammers targets professional career

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Charlie Stammers’ rise in the world of golf continued earlier this month when he clinched the Lee Westwood Golf Tour National Finals title on the Filly Course at Close House, near Newcastle.

The 16-year-old was brought his first set of clubs aged nine, but did not take up the game too seriously until two years ago.

Since then the Diss teenager’s progression has been continual, with victories recorded in The John Bell Classic and The Laurie Cup, while performances in two Tour regional competitions at Stoke-by-Nayland booked his place on Tyneside.

A nett score of 71 on the opening day left Stammers eighth in the Under-17 category, before he carded an impressive nett 65 on day two to emerge victorious in both the under-17 and under-21 age groups.

Having got his hands on the silver salver — as well as a host of other prizes — Stammers is hoping the experience will hold him in good stead as he bids to fulfil his ultimate dream.

“I did not expect to win, it was more a case of getting a bit of experience under my belt,” said the Diss High School sixth form pupil.

“I was one or two over after the first day, so I decided not to use my driver after that and just use a three wood. From then I kept things straighter.

“I want to be a professional, either as a teacher or as a player.

“It is going to be tough, but victories like this one help with the confidence levels. I just have to make sure I keep working hard.”

While it is Stammers who heads out on the course to drive down the fairways and sink the putts, he is aware plenty of help has been provided along the way.

Diss Golf Club professional Nigel Taylor and former junior organiser Paul Hunt have both offered guidance, while step- father Philip has lent advice and took on the role of caddy at Close Hall.

“Diss Golf Club has been a major help to me, especially people like Nigel, who gives me so much good advice,” added Stammers.

“Paul Hunt is the same — always on hand to help me.

“Philip is one of the big reasons I got into golf and why I want to keep doing well.

“If it was not for these people I would not be where I am today.”

Stammers will now practice throughout the winter, before returning to competitive action next year.