Downcast Whitworth takes break from action

Andy Whitworth is throwing his clubs in the cupboard and having a couple of weeks away from the game after a Sunday to forget at Woodsome Hall.

All eyes are on the Bradley Hall legend when the Halifax-Huddersfield Union’s matchplay competition comes around because he has won it 11 times - seven more than anyone else.

But Whitworth, having struggled in the qualifying strokeplay event at Outlane, crashed out in the first round of the head-to-head contests.

Whitworth lost 4 and 3 to Halifax’s Chris Lander and he said: “I played terrible. I’ve been playing poorly all year.

“I was four down after eight, got one back at the ninth but then lost my ball on 14 to got back to four down.”

When the pair halved the 15th it was all over, a huge disappointment for Whitworth, who had regained the trophy after a five-year gap when he beat Brad Tupman at Bradley Park last autumn.

He now plans to take a break.

“I’m going to have a bit of a rest and hopefully come back refreshed with a bit more keenness.

“I’m sure I’ll be back.”

Whitworth’s matchplay campaign was over before Aaron Schnacke’s had started in the BM Howarth-backed event.

Mytholmroyd’s Schnacke, looking to add the matchplay title to the strokeplay crown, had a bye when Outlane’s Steve Beeby withdrew.

However, the 23-year-old, then had a marathon last 16 contest against Fixby clubmate Tom Williams.

Schnacke finally saw off his 18-year-old rival on the 26th hole and he now faces another Huddersfield Golf Club member, fellow Union side player Brad Tupman, in the last eight over their home course on Saturday, September 15.

“It was a relief,” said Schnacke. “I really wanted to win because I am going for the double.”

The 2009 matchplay champion and Williams teed off at 12.45 and it was going up to 6.0 when their battle was finally resolved.

Both players parred the first seven extra holes and Schnacke did the same on the 26th, holing from eight foot and then seeing his rival miss.

“We were both getting up and down from everywhere and he nearly chipped in three times,” said Schnacke, who knows he will have to play better to beat Tupman.

The pair go round Fixby together about once a week and Schnacke said: “He’s dead steady. He never gets in any trouble.”

Matchplay round one: A.Schnacke (Hudds) walkover v S.Beeby (Outlane), T.Williams (Hudds) bt M.Major (Hudds) 6 and 5, B.Tupman (Hudds) bt B.Kaye (Bradley Park) 4 and 3, A.Shaw (Bradley Hall) bt G.Moolman (Huddersfield) 2 and 1, M.Colcombe (Longley Park) bt J.Hayes (Hudds) 5 and 3, M.Broadbent (Woodsome) bt J.Doherty (Longley Park) 5 & 4, J.Hazalden (Outlane) by M.Murray (Todmorden) 1 hole; M.Cockroft (Bradley Hall) bt D.Lyness (Saddleworth) 4 and 3, M.Birkett (Halifax) bt R.Wilby (Elland) 3 and 2, S.Martin (West End) bt L.Dean (Halifax) 6 and 4, D.Stafford (Todmorden) bt P.Walker (Outlane) 3 and 2, D.Hartley (Dewsbury) bt B.Crowther (Dewsbury) at 19th, A.Cryer (Woodsome) lost to Jamie Smith (Halifax) 5 & 4, Adam Walker (Hudds) lost to Ed Battye (Bradley Park) 3 & 2, Andy Wilford (Hudds) bt C.Judson (Bradley Hall) 4 & 2, A.Whitworth (Bradley Hall) lost to C.Lander (Halifax) 4 and 3.

Round two: Schnacke bt Williams at the 26th, Tupman bt Shaw 4 & 3, Colcombe bt Broadbent 2 & 1, Cockroft bt Hazelden 4 & 3, Martin bt Birkett 2 & 1, Hartley bt Stafford 2up, Battye bt Smith by 1 hole, Wilford bt Lander 5 and 3.

Quarter finals (at Huddersfield on September 15): 9.40, Schnacke v Tupman; 9.50, Colcombe v Cockroft; 10.0, Martin v Hartley; 10.10, Battye v Wilford.