Dougherty was one of my pupils – Oak Royal captain

BRIAN Woodhead, who has been installed as captain at Oak Royal Golf and Country Club in Withnell, has fond memories of Shaw Hill’s burgeoning star Nick Dougherty who was one of his pupils at Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School.

Exif_JPEG_PICTURE“He was a good guy who was not strong on maths but we didn’t treat him any differently from the other boys,” recalled the retired teacher.

Woodhead (pictured right) also taught geography and was master in charge of cricket during his 33 years at the Blackburn school where he was instrumental in helping three players to reach county level, including Yorkshire-born batsman Kevin Hayes who went on to represent Lancashire.

“We had no golf dealings in those days,” he said, Dougherty declining the chance to excel at the bat and ball game as well!

Instead, he chose a career in golf but after eight years competing on the European Tour, which earned him three victories, the former Walker Cup player’s form dipped in 2009 and at 33 the Sky Living for Sport ambassador is still battling to get it back.

Meanwhile, Woodhead, 69, was also coaching administrator for the Lancashire Cricket Board and the first man to run overseas courses, West Indians Malcolm Marshall, Roger Harper and Gus Logie all qualifying under his leadership.

He was recognised nationally by Sky Sport who sponsored the English County Board coaching scheme and received a gold medal, one of 50 allocated to the United Kingdom, to mark the International Cricket Council’s 100th anniversary in 2009.

Woodhead, a former teacher at Blackthorn Secondary School in Bacup, took up golf during his time at City of Birmingham College in the early 1960s.

“It was half-a-crown a round at Edgbaston Golf Club,” recalled the six handicapper, who was a member of Accrington and Wilpshire before joining Oak Royal five years ago.  

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