EDWARD ODDY has been elected captain of the Oxford University golf team – and on his long summer vacation he will be available for the already strong Fixby squad.
One-handicapper Oddy, 20, the former Halifax, Huddersfield Union junior matchplay champion who is in his second year of a history degree, will be home next month until September and will be competing regularly at Fixby.
“If I’m required by the club I’ll be available, but I know they have a strong squad now. My game has been good playing No1 in the Oxford team,” he said.
“It’s largely matchplay that we play and I have a 755 win ratio,” said Oddy, who this week delighted in his pal Steve Uzzell, from Hornsea, joining Fixby’s Peter Fenton as a winner of the English Strokeplay (Brabazon Trophy).
Oddy gained his Blue in the Varsity match with Cambridge last year and was prominent as the Dark Blues scored a narrow win over the Light Blues in this year’s three-day match at Royal Liverpool.
Oxford’s season takes in matches against top clubs like Wentworth, Sunningdale and Royal St Georges, and they also met visiting American university Harvard at The Oxfordshire.
Oddy reached the semi-finals of the President’s Putter, the tournament contested by past and present Oxbridge men, at Rye.
Dave Hayes, a Warwickshire county player and last year’s champion, was among those he beat before going out to Charlie Rothery, foursomes partner of Ryder Cup player Luke Donald in their Berks, Bucks and Oxon county days, who went on to win for the third time.
Meanwhile, Sam Haywood, leader of the Eagle Golf-Yorkshire Order of Merit, will challenge for the Earl of Dartmouth Trophy at Woodsome Hall on Monday, though most of the top 10 in the merit list miss the 36-hole event.
Haywood, from Rotherham, won the York Rose Bowl at Strensall earlier this month where he was always the man to beat after opening with a brilliant 64.
He went on to prevail by four shots from James Maw, of Hallowes, and Rotherham clubmate Matthew Evans and that enabled him to move to No1 in the Order of Merit by overtaking Moortown’s Nick McCarthy, winner of back to back events in the Hawksworth Trophy and Cleveland Salver.
Along with Haywood, a plus-two handicapper, fellow Yorkshire county squad players Steve Brennan, a past Order of Merit champion from Wheatley, and Bradford’s Sam Jewell bid for an event in which home club man Chris Dyson’s local knowledge could again be a telling factor.
The Woodsome Hall man goes for a hat-trick of victories after firing rounds of 69 69 last year, which bettered his winning total of 2006 by two shots.
Leading the big challenge from rival local clubs are Andy Shaw, from Bradley Hall, and Hebden Bridge’s Ian Powell, both plus one players.
Halifax, Huddersfield Union champion Richard Broadley is in the field of 66, as is his club’s manager at Fixby, Tim Seaton, a one-handicap former Cambridgeshire county player who recently took over at Huddersfield.