The Hacker: Glory of Wales drowned out by wails of mobile misery - Golf - Sport - The Independent

The Hacker: Glory of Wales drowned out by wails of mobile misery

There will not be a great deal of sympathy available for anyone daft enough to play golf in last week's storms, but that won't prevent me from holding out the begging bowl for a few condolences. It was our annual pilgrimage to St Andrews, and you don't go all the way up there not to play rounds you've paid for in advance.

As it happens, that part of Scotland was not hit as hard as places down south but it was windy enough, especially on our first day, when we played the Jubilee course in lashing rain.

It wasn't too bad when the wind was behind us for the first seven holes, and I was quite happy with my 14 points as we turned slightly back into the gale for the eighth, which is a tricky little dogleg on the calmest of days.

Then, from the depths of my bag, came the sound of my mobile phone ringing. Mobiles are quite rightly forbidden on golf courses, but I carry one for emergencies and thought I'd turned it off.

Curiosity made me answer it, and the young lady at the other end asked if I could go somewhere quieter because she couldn't hear me properly. I shouted that I was in the middle of a storm-tossed golf course and I would ring her later.

But she said she was speaking from the news desk of 'The Independent' and needed to speak to me urgently about writing a 1,600-word feature on the joys of being a Welshman, due to all the sporting success we are having at the moment.

I asked when they wanted it and she said: "Today."

Explaining that I wasn't experiencing joy of any sort at this particular moment and that by the time I'd dried out and warmed up it would be too late to meet the deadline, I declined their kind invitation.

There then followed two unfortunate happenings. First, I pulled my drive into the thick rough bordering the Eden estuary and suffered my first blob of the round. Secondly, in trying to put my mobile back into my bag, I must have dropped it.

The ninth and 10th were straight into the gale and you could hardly swing a club. Two of our party abandoned the game and fled to the clubhouse but the rest of us plodded manfully on. I didn't score for five holes but then urged my soaked frame in a despairing effort that brought me a final total of 21 points, which was the fifth best of our group of 12.

Meanwhile, my mobile had been found by a kindly golfer playing several holes behind us. He put it in his bag, whereupon it started ringing again.

Young ladies on news desks are nothing if not persistent and she was back to have another go. I don't know if the phone-finder fancied writing about the joys of being a Welshman, but it would probably have been easier than trying to explain that he wasn't the person she thought he was.

My limbs were still aching when I faced the Old Course the following morning. The sun was shining brightly but the wind, which had switched to the North-west, was unmerciful to someone who has swing problems at the best of times. My humiliating collapse is a story for another day.

p.corrigan@independent.co.uk

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones
Theme parks continue to draw in thrill-seekers despite the risks - so why are we so addicted?

Why are we addicted to theme parks?

Now that Banksy has unveiled his own dystopian version, Christopher Beanland considers the ups and downs of our endless quest for amusement
Tourism in Iran: The country will soon be opening up again after years of isolation

Iran is opening up again to tourists

After years of isolation, Iran is reopening its embassies abroad. Soon, there'll be the chance for the adventurous to holiday there
10 best PS4 games

10 best PS4 games

Can’t wait for the new round of blockbusters due out this autumn? We played through last year’s offering
Transfer window: Ten things we learnt

Ten things we learnt from the transfer window

Record-breaking spending shows FFP restraint no longer applies
Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

‘Can we really just turn away?’

Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

... and not just because of Isis vandalism
Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

Girl on a Plane

An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent