A host of stars from sport and showbiz thrilled bumper
crowds in the sunshine as the Celebrity Cup teed off at Celtic Manor on
The tightest ever race to reach Sunday afternoon's final sees only half a point separating the top three of the four teams after the first day's play.
Wales, captained by TV funny man Rob Brydon, took a surprise
morning lead but were then pegged back by tournament favourites Scotland in the
second round. The Scots take a very narrow lead into their final round robin match against bottom side Ireland while Wales take on old rivals England.
The biggest crowds of the morning cheered on football superstar Gareth Bale
and rugby legend Sir Gareth Edwards.
Bale is used to running out in front of 80,000 fans at Real
Madrid’s imposing Bernabeu Stadium but admitted to being more nervous in front
of a few thousand golf fans.
onto the golf course today was a lot more nerve-racking, said Bale. “I’m completely
out of my comfort zone but it’s really good fun. I was a little bit nervous
stood there on the first tee but I actually hit a really great shot and then
couldn’t find my ball!
been playing with Sir Gareth Edwards, which has been great. To play with such a
legend was an honour. The tournament has been great but I don’t think you’ll
see me on the PGA tour anytime soon.”
Glenister, best known for his portrayal of tough cop Gene Hunt in Life on Mars,
was more forthright about the pressure of playing in front of a gallery.
bum-clenchingly nervous,” he admitted before teeing off. “I prefer to go down
the Bubba Watson route and have plenty of noise on the first tee. I hate that
moment when it all goes silent, it’s terrifying.”
fellow actor Andrew Howard were Wales’ best performers and showbiz duo Rob
Brydon and Gethin Jones were also winner against Ronan Keating and Keith Duffy,
who almost missed his tee time after a heavy night.
Scotland were narrow victors by a single hole over England
in the morning’s other match. With two of the three games tied at the finish,
legendary Liverpool footballers Kenny Dalglish and Celebrity Cup skipper Alan
Hansen pipped Rugby World Cup winner Mike Tindall and Zoe Hardman to make the
Other stars representing their nations in this weekend’s
Celebrity Cup include TV presenters Vernon Kay and Ben Shephard, Irish singers
Ronan Keating and Brian McFadden and rugby player turned Strictly star, Thom
Autographs, selfies and banter were the order of the day as
the celebrity players entertained the galleries on a glorious day of sunshine.
All four teams can still reach the final as the round robin
matches conclude when Scotland meet Ireland and Wales play England on Sunday morning.
The final and third place play-off follow in the afternoon.
Tickets are available on the gate.