THE best all-round sportsman in the Champions field is the 2009 South Shields Golf Club champion, Mick Shotton.
As a top order batsman, he played cricket for South Shields Cricket Club when they won the Durham Senior League.
And as a Northern League and Wearside League midfielder he was in the South Shields Football Club team which won the Monkwearmouth Cup and he also turned out for Hebburn Town and Seaham Red Star.
Now 49, Shotton, who is an accounts officer in his home town for McNulty Offshore Construction Ltd, has just started playing league golf for Shields in the North Durham Union, having won both his matches.
“I liked the camaraderie of team sports when I was younger,” he said, “and although I had played the occasional game of golf I really got into it when my wife Diane gave me a set of clubs for my 40th birthday.”
He shot a three-under 68 and a 75 to win the club championship. After finishing his first round with three birdies in four holes, he was worried a half-hour delay for rain during the second round might see the whole tournament replayed.
He said: “Thankfully we got it finished and in the end I won by three shots.”
On the subject of league golf, Close House champion Steve Conway, next year’s captain, says: “All the Hadrian League teams who have visited our club this season say it seems like a new course since Graham Wylie took it over.
“The biggest change they have noticed is how true the greens are and that helped me win the club championship because you always feel confident over your six-footers at our club.”
Shotton, 37 yesterday, lives in Wallsend and works in the architects’ department of Newcastle City Council. He shot 74 77, surviving a triple bogey in each round.
The 49-year-old Consett champion, Stephen Suddick, who is a collection driver for Royal Mail, sometimes takes his time between deliveries in terms of his golf.
He scored 72 72 to regain a title he last won 17 years ago.