Excited captain is ready for club's UK Finals showdown
CAPTAIN Mike Carlile has hailed a "fighting spirit" that he believes has steered Immingham Golf Club to the UK finals of a major national competition.
A squad of six golfers from the club will compete in the quarter-finals of the Mail on Sunday Classic, in Manchester on September 23-24.
They are just one win away from qualifying for the final-four showdown, in Huelva, Spain, two months' later.
After a bye in round one, the team saw off Waltham Windmill, Withernsea, Louth, Wheatley, Tinsley Park, and Leeds-based Rawdon Golf & Tennis Club.
To reach the final eight, Immingham pulled off an impressive 4-1 victory against Nottingham club Mapperley, the winners in 2002.
Club captain Mike Carlile said: "We cannot remember getting past the second round before, so it's been quite a success story this year.
"Since we got through the third and fourth rounds I've barely slept properly.
"The UK Finals will be a really big occasion for us. The whole club is really excited and proud of the players.
"This is a shock to the system. It will be the biggest achievement the club has ever made.
"Both myself and my vice-captain, Tony Hallam, will be there giving our support on every tee and green we can be at, along with other members who are joining us.
"There'll be some nerves on the first tee I'm sure, but we'll be powered by adrenalin."
Immingham's team includes three past Club Champion winners and the newly-crowned 2012 champion, Mick Cardy, as well as three players who joined as juniors.
The four Club Champion winners – Zane Pexman, Paul Turrell, Rob Bemment and Mick Cardy – are joined by Mick's son Lee, and Matt Norton.
The Mail on Sunday Classic sees five individual matches contested in a matchplay format with full handicap difference.
Carlile, who was made captain last year, says the club's achievement in the competition is just rewards for those who backed Immingham in leaner times two years ago.
The 56-year-old said: "Two years ago the club was in a bit of financial trouble. A lot of members put money into the club and helped keep it going.
"Everyone worked really hard, and people have stayed with us. I think that has given us our fighting spirit as a club and a team."
Michael Cardy won a two-day competition held at Immingham.
Cardy (six) posted rounds of gross 68 and 74 (net 62 and 68) to win. Net runner-up Norman Cochrane impressed – the 78-year-old, who plays off 18, carded scores of 64 and 70.