THE Bradford golf season is really getting underway now, with the club alliances out of the way and the first big tournament of the year in the Inter Club Fourball Championship taking place last weekend.

It was hosted by The Manor Golf Club and won by a pair of their players, on a great day for the BD11 outfit.

Delighted Bradford Union president Mark Buckley said: “The alliances are all finished and were very well attended, as you can imagine, given people were desperate to play competitive golf.

“Last Friday we had the first scratch matches of the season, which went off reasonably well in good weather, then on Sunday we had that fantastic event at The Manor.

“They need a big pat on the back, as the previous owner’s sons have taken over, spent money and really changed things around.

“It will be really something in two years’ time.”

Sam Hardaker and Chris Sugden scooped both the gross and nett prizes on the day, with Buckley adding: “Chris has been captain at Manor for two years and he’s been a driving force behind the changes too.

“He and Sam won both the gross and nett trophies, but they couldn’t win both prize monies, so the top three in gross got it, then second, third and fourth in nett did.”

It was a good day too for Shipley’s young duo Max Berrisford and Matthew Morrison, who were second in the gross standings.

Buckley said: “They both did fantastically Max and Matthew, and it’s good because there are a lot of clubs using younger members and playing them in things like scratch matches, like Bingley St Ives.

“Ben Davey and Will Thornber came second for them in the nett standings on Sunday behind Sam and Chris, and they’re both talented young golfers too.

“It all bodes well for Bradford Union golf in the future.”

South Bradford had pairs finishing fourth and fifth in the gross standings at the Fourball Championship, and Buckley said: “South Bradford are a fantastic club.

“If you look at all the competitions we have, there are 27 clubs in the union, but a lot of them don’t participate.

“There are some clubs that always do, and it is those clubs like Manor, Shipley, Northcliffe and South Bradford that you can rely on to play all the time.”

Quickly explaining the difference between the gross and nett standings, Buckley said: “Realistically, the winning score goes to gross and that’s the one all the golfers competing want to get.

“If you play at the Bradford Open for example, you all play off scratch, so it all really comes down to who the gross winner is, as it’s not to do with handicaps.”

That kingpin tournament, the Bradford Open, is not getting underway until the start of July, but in the meantime there is plenty to keep the district’s golfers occupied.

Buckley said: “We’ve got scratch matches again this Friday and then there’s the Second Division Team Championship this Sunday, which is being played at Skipton.

“That’s always well supported and should be good.”