The Hacker: Now even the celebrities are ganging up on us lesser mortals

Celebrity golfers are not like ordinary golfers. They may play ordinarily for much of the time, but their fame makes them invaluable to charity golf events.

"Celebrity" is an elasticated word that seems to stretch wider in meaning every year and has even included me on the odd occasion when the organisers of a fundraiser have been so desperate they'd recruit anyone to fill the gaps in their money-making fourballs.

Unfortunately, claims to celebrity status do not include the spending of most evenings celebrating, so I have notproved worthy.

But in Tenerife the other weekend I played with a few entitled to the description. As I wrote last week, we were a dozen blokes from different professions and backgrounds on a highly enjoyable golf trip.

Luxuriously billeted at the new Abama Hotel Resort on the west coast, we played three courses on three sunny days, and recognised everywhere we went, even by Tenerifians, was the actor Ross Kemp.

Formerly of 'EastEnders', Ross pursues his calling in a variety of roles. Recently returned from Afghanistan, where he filmed a documentary series for ITV, he opened this weekend in 'Snow White' at the Wimbledon Theatre.

He spent much of his spare time on the trip learning his part as the wicked henchman. It is very difficult to play golf when you can sense someone behind you all the time, but he did win the last day with 33 points.

Ross took up golf after finishing playing rugby and is a member at a club in south London so, unlike many charity golf celebrities, he has an official handicap which is 18.

Someone who I am sure will be making more appearances on the celebrity circuit is the comedian Dom Joly, who also writes for this paper.

I was assured before the trip that Dom was an even worse player than me, so when I lined up against him on the first day I felt fairly confident. Then I hooked my first drive out of bounds and he sent his a mile straight down the fairway.

I said: "I thought you couldn't play."

"So did I," he replied.

It turned out that he'd spent the previous week having lessons from his local pro, and the result staggered even him. He came in with something like 30 points and was a revelation for the rest of the trip.

I asked him what exactly he'd learned. He said he'd been told to remember three things: soft hands and a slow swing were the first two, and I can't for the life of me remember what the third one was.

The upshot was that his golfing life has been suddenly transformed, and personally I hope that watching someone suddenly discovering that playing golf is a pleasure instead of an embarrassment will bean inspiration.

All I can say about my golf is that I improved each day, and my final round of 25 points was more than a few of the others scored. But I still finished last, and for that I was presented with a signed copy of Ross's book on 'Gangs', based on his award-winning series on Sky TV.

I don't think that was very fair on him. It was the first time that I'd ever heard of a celebrity booby prize.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before