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Budding Branston golfers in 99 hole charity challenge

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: August 27, 2014

By Rob Smyth

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TWO junior golfers played 99 holes non-stop in a special dawn to dusk event that raised more than £1,000 for charity.

Thirteen-year-old Tom Alford, a pupil at Branston's Paget High School, teamed up with 16-year-old James Wilkinson to take part in the mammoth challenge to boost the coffers of the Branston Golf and Country Club's golf captain's charity, Canine Partners.

Together with a team of caddies the intrepid pair teed off at the course, based off Fairway, as dawn broke at 5.30am and, with only very brief refreshment stops at the end of each round, played continuously until 8.30pm when the light began to fade and the end of the their challenge grew ever closer.

"Altogether we played 99 holes in five-and-a-half rounds and must have walked around 25 miles on a very long, enjoyable but exhausting day," said Tom, who has recently won at Beau Desert GC Junior Open and is now preparing for a Staffordshire under-14s match at Onneley.

James, who will be next year's junior captain at Branston Golf and Country Club following his triumph at the Branston Junior Open, is now leading the Staffordshire Boys Golf Order of Merit.

He said: "We debated going on to make it 100 holes but by then our caddies were wilting. However, we couldn't face leaving the big crowd that greeted us at the 18th green while we went off to start again."

Together, the talented young golfers attracted sponsorship of more than £1,000 for their 'dawn to dusk day'.

"It's a tremendous achievement for the two lads, of whom we are very proud," said Robert Hardie, Branston's golf captain.

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