AARON SCHNACKE, the first Halifax, Huddersfield Union champion not to have made the Union team, is one of a ‘trial’ 12 called up by team manager Chris Mear for a warm-up match before the start of the Yorkshire Inter-Union League campaign.
Mear’s side takes on a Union junior team at Bradley Park tomorrow (2.00) when the format will be fourball matches.
Mear, whose side open in the League against Leeds at Woodsome Hall on May 16, takes tomorrow as an opportunity to look at a number of fringe players, as a fair number of up-and-coming youngsters, some of whom will be in the junior line-up, will be knocking on the door this season.
As Union champion, Schnacke is guaranteed a team place, most likely at No1. He broke through last season with his championship win at Meltham where he beat Jamie Bower 2&1.
A long-hitting player, he has shown some impressive work in the winter as a member of Fixby pro Paul Carman’s quartet in West Yorkshire Alliance events, including when he holed in one at a par four of 277 yards at Northcliffe, Shipley.
Schnacke, 20, who used a rescue club that equates to a two-iron to make that remarkable shot, said: “It was one of those things that come around just once in maybe a lifetime. It certainly was a memorable hole for us, for Paul made an eagle two there as well.”
One of four Fixby players in tomorrow’s line-up, one being Andy Wilford who has moved to Fixby from Outlane during the winter, Schnacke has a two handicap which he says he is determined to lower to scratch this summer.
Mear, who would love a start to the League season to match the end of last year’s otherwise disappointing campaign – Halifax, Huddersfield finished second last – when a young side rounded off in style with a great away win over mighty Sheffield.
Proven players like Andy Shaw, Jim Fairhurst, Ian Powell, Graham McLean and Richard Broadley will not be on duty at Bradley Park as Mear wants to look at other squad players. He said: “We have some lads who are knocking on the door and this get-together is a nice chance to get some squad spirit going.”
A group of juniors have recently had a coaching session at Fixby with professionals Alex Keighley (Huddersfield), Tom Wild (Bradley Park) and Richard Lambert (Crosland Heath).
Mear’s line-up tomorrow is: Schnacke, Brad Tupman, Andy Wilford, Jarrod Ellison (all Fixby), Ben Crowther, Mark Hepworth (both Dewsbury), Matthew Colcombe, Adam Walker (both Longley Park), Chris Ingham, David Stafford (both West End), Mark Birkett (Halifax), Ben Adamson (Crow Nest Park).
The Junior line-up is: Tom Calvert (Willow Valley), Ethan Shaw (Marsden), Jamie Smith (Halifax), George Bamford (Hebden Bridge), Ryan Joyce (Huddersfield), Bradley Hardcastle (West End), Lewis Collins, Luke Pilkington (both Crosland Heath), Michael Major (Huddersfield), Joshua Bailes (Bradley Hall), Ben Kaye (Bradley Park), and one to be announced.