Sir Terry Matthews & Celtic Manor put Newport on map

By , 4th October 2010 16:40

Since I found a discarded copy of the Telegraph on a train last week, I’ve been meaning to link to this article which relates the story of the first golf course to be built specifically to host the Ryder Cup and Terry Matthews’ mission to bring the tournament to Wales.

Having been brought up in Chepstow, just a few miles to the east, I can remember the maternity hospital, where Matthews was born, which made way for the Celtic Manor resort.

I am also familiar with the highly changeable nature of the local weather!  However, as the competition teed off, the Met Office warned that the wet and windy weather would affect much of the country.  Judging by the rain that fell over the last few days on my current home in St Albans – where Ryder conceived his cup – I suspect few courses in the British Isles could have staged the event uninterrupted.

From a European perspective, the issue is the Ryder Cup’s increasingly late date in the golfing calendar rather than its venue. Afterall, the last time play was interrupted by the weather was in 1999 when the rain in Spain fell mostly on Valderrama.

After Europe’s nerve-shredding victory over the US on the first Monday in Ryder Cup history, Celtic Manor has well-and-truly secured its status as a sporting landmark.

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