Former England cricketer Andrew “Freddie” Flintoff and Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp joined Ryder Cup-winning Captains Sam Torrance and Ian Woosnam in a par three shootout ahead of the De Vere Club PGA Seniors Championship on the European Senior Tour.
The contest, played in a foursomes format, saw De Vere Club ambassador Flintoff paired with former Masters Tournament champion Woosnam, and Redknapp partnering 11-time Senior Tour champion Torrance at De Vere Slaley Hall in Hexham, England, the host venue for this week’s £250,000 event.
With the first hole having been halved in three thanks chiefly to a deft chip from Redknapp, the Spurs boss and Torrance prevailed at the second hole after Flintoff had missed a par putt from four feet.
Flintoff said: “I wasn’t that nervous when I played for England in the Ashes – it was terrifying! But I really enjoyed it, and it was a pleasure to play with Ian and Sam. Woosie gave me a few tips, so hopefully I can take them on board and get my handicap down. Harry thought I was a bandit playing off 24, but now that he’s seen me in action he knows better!”
The all-rounder, who inspired England to Ashes glory in 2005 and 2009 before injury forced him to retire from the game last year, will get the chance to gain revenge in the Freddie vs Harry Bat & Ball Challenge this afternoon.
The Pro-Am format pits his team of cricketing legends – comprising his fellow former England Test stars Paul Collingwood, Darren Gough, Steve Harmison, Graeme Hick and Graham Onions – against Redknapp’s team of former footballers, featuring his son Jamie, Clive Allen, Peter Beardsley, Kevin Bond and Billy Rafferty.
Torrance and Woosnam will again be paired with Redknapp and Flintoff, and the duo were relishing the chance to resume their friendly rivalries before the serious action gets underway on Thursday.
Torrance said: “It’s been great fun, and the perfect way to start the week. This is our flagship event so it’s a big week, and I’m looking forward to getting out there. The course looks in perfect condition – I had expected it to be firmer and bouncier because we haven’t had much rain, but it’s beautifully green and lush so the greenkeeping staff have obviously done a great job.”
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