Sport

Denis better than his age

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January 11, 2017

Age no bariier: 76 year-old Denis Kelleher beat his age in a rare feat at Shepparton Golf Club.

Denis Kelleher has achieved a feat that only one other player at the Shepparton Golf Club is known to have done before him.

Kelleher, 76, beat his age when playing in the Tuesday competition before Christmas.

The 11-handicapper fired a round of 75, one below his age to secure the impressive feat.

Taking up golf in his 30s, Kelleher said he was thrilled to complete a challenge he had set for himself, having come close in the past.

‘‘Beating my age was very nerve-wracking, but it was a great relief,’’ he said.

‘‘It’s something I’ve had opportunities to do and always fallen over at the last hurdle, but getting 70 when I was 70 was also a great thrill. That’s the best round I’ve ever had.’’

Kelleher was in superb form leading into Christmas, coming close to beating his age just before the competition.

But needing to make par on the final four holes of his round, he fell just short.

On the day of his accomplishment Kelleher said Bob Dixon urged him to beat his age, and in doing so win the day’s competition.

‘‘My playing partner who was marking my card, Bob Dixon, was a great support. I could feel it because he has done so much in golf,’’ Kelleher said.

‘‘He’s an absolute legend of the club, as are the Dixon family, so that was terrific to have Bob as my playing partner and he wrote out the card again for me so I had a souvenir.’’

A new board commemorating those who have beaten their age was introduced at the club just a fortnight before Kelleher’s achievement.

He is the youngest person inscribed on the plaque, with Ken Harris the only other name there.

Harris beat his age for the first time in 2010 aged 77, going on to do it again five years later.

While Kelleher said there were certainly players who had beaten their age in the past, club members could not recall anyone doing it before Harris.

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