Trude hails team
HERTFORDSHIRE county golfers can look back on a highly successful season, having won the inter-county title after a succession of close calls in recent years, and that success will hopefully be repeated this year. That is the confident forecast from the m
HERTFORDSHIRE county golfers can look back on a highly successful season, having won the inter-county title after a succession of close calls in recent years, and that success will hopefully be repeated this year.
That is the confident forecast from the man who has helped mastermind the continuing progress of the county team as team manager, Terry Trude, of Harpenden Common, who says: "We have the players who will make one of the strongest county teams we have known."
Terry became the first man to be appointed to what was a new position in the county, that of team manager. Now he is stepping down after 14 years - but far from losing touch, he will be even more involved in his continuing commitment to the Hertfordshire Golf Union.
At next month's annual meeting he will be elected President of the Union, his election taking place at his own club at Harpenden Common, where he is currently President and is a former captain. He is also President of the county Artisans.
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Terry, 62, was born in Tiverton in Devon, then moved to Cornwall, and from there to Harrow, where he went to the county school. He was a latecomer to golf, having played rugby for the school old boys.
He and his wife Janet, who have been married 45 years, left Harrow, eventually settling in St Albans and it was she who first took up golf, becoming a member at Batchwood Hall, then joining Harpenden Common, and Terry followed her there after being a member at Redbourn and Berkhamsted.
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"I had played golf before - as a buyer for a public company I spent six months in the far east in my mid-20s, and played in Japan at Kobe Country Club but had never taken it up seriously," he says.
A member of Harpenden Common for 19 years, he has been a committee member since 1991 and chairman of the social committee. He was elected captain in 1993, the year being a milestone in the club's history when new land was acquired and the course extended.
Terry joined the Herts Golf Union in 1994, in that year taking over as county secretary, from the late Wilf de Podesta, who had been elected president. And how he became team manager is, he says "a bit of a story."
"When I was club captain in 1993, Harpenden Common had a very talented young scratch team, who climbed into the first division but because of lack of discipline and organisation, they were relegated to the second division," he says,
"I was so annoyed that I got them together for a meeting, and they said if I felt so strongly why didn't I run the scratch team! So I became the first scratch team manager. And we got back into the first division.
"In 1994 we played Porters Park in the last match of the season when Richard Latham was their captain and we beat them for the first time. Richard told me he had been nominated captain of the county team but said 'The only way I'll take it is if you become county team manager with me'. So I became both club and county team manager - now, I relinquish both as I take on the demanding role of president, which I consider a great honour."
Terry himself became county captain in 2001, being followed by Simon Hankin, Campbell Boal and Alan Sallis, and now starting his fourth year James York, and he says: "From the start the partnership of captain and team manager has worked well. We won the title last year, and can count ourselves unlucky that in recent seasons we have just missed out - one season Kent needed to win the final match by 101/2 to 11/2 to pip us - and did it, against a weakened Middlesex side."
Now retired from his cash-and-carry business, he says: "For me it has been a privilege to work with many dedicated players, the backbone of county golf, among them the ones I have mentioned, and in particular John Ambridge, on whom we can always rely. I think they are heroes. We have seen develop some talented young players who have played their part in the county team and are now making their way as tour players, among the more recent, Brian Davis, David Griffiths and Sam and Jamie Little, whose progress is a tribute to their junior years in the county. We are also seeing similar progress among our juniors, notably Tom Shadbolt now recognised by the English selectors, and Nick Pateman both winners of the county title.
"It was for Hertfordshire county golf a successful and worthwhile season in 2007 and although we didn't manage to beat Sussex for the South East title, being pipped in the final match, I am sure we will do even better this year, for we have players who will make up one of the strongest teams ever.