Sixty years as a golfer

Keith Murr re­flects on his life as a mem­ber of the Monto Golf Club

Central and North Burnett Times - - SPORT - Jack Lawrie jack.lawrie@cnbtimes.com.au

KEITH Murr has been a mem­ber of the Monto Golf Club for just over 60 years, mak­ing him one of the long­est-serv­ing mem­bers.

He joined the club at the age of 25 (he’s 85 now, turn­ing 86 in March), af­ter his brother showed him the ropes of the game.

“My brother came up from Coffs Har­bour af­ter the war, and he said ‘come on I’ll show you golf clubs’,” Keith said.

“So we came out here, he gets the golf club out and I had about three shots to start and I loved it ever since.”

Keith re­mem­bers a very dif­fer­ent Monto Golf Club to the one we have now, one he de­scribed as be­ing more “up-mar­ket”.

“The old play­ers used to play, they were well-dressed, it’s more ca­sual to­day,” Keith said.

“We had nine sand greens when I started, now we have none, it’s all grass.”

A baker by trade, though re­tired since 2000, Keith also worked part-time as a green­keeper at the golf club dur­ing the 70s, when the club was tran­si­tion­ing from sand to grass.

“I was green­keeper here for 14 years, I used to bake at night time then come out in the af­ter­noon and do main­te­nance on the course,” he said.

“I built two of the grass greens, two and six I think.”

He briefly came back to work on the greens in 2006.

Keith was also a com­pet­i­tive golfer in his day and even made it into a few club cham­pi­onships.

“I think I won maybe half a dozen club cham­pi­onships, two or three match­play cham­pi­onships, three or four mixed cham­pi­onships and a few men’s cham­pi­onships,” he said.

He even man­aged to fea­ture in the dis­trict zone cham­pi­onships back in the 60s, dur­ing a three way com­pe­ti­tion be­tween Gayn­dah, Mundubbera and Monto.

How­ever, he got beaten by one point in the play­off.

“There was two of us tied, the fol­low­ing week we had the play­off and he beat me by one,” Keith said.

“It was at this club, by the last hole, got a two penalty.”

Still an ac­tive player, Keith nor­mally plays nine holes on Thurs­day and 18 on Sun­day.

Though his com­pe­ti­tion days are largely be­hind him, he still likes to try and chal­lenge his per­sonal best.

His peers at the club say he’s scored three hole-in-ones through­out his ca­reer, although Keith doesn’t fully re­mem­ber them.

“I had one down the Sun­shine Coast, and one here, but you for­get these things, you know.”

Look­ing back over his his­tory as a golfer, Keith said he had done all right con­sid­er­ing how dif­fer­ent the club was when he joined.

“We had no coach­ing on those days, we learned ev­ery­thing from the book,” he said.

“My younger brother Bill and I started play­ing at the same time with three clubs we brought and we taught our­selves how to play.”

Play­ing golf for 60 years has kept him ac­tive and in good fit­ness.

“I’ve got good health, never had any com­plaints, I’m not on any pre­scrip­tion medicine,” he said.

Keith hopes he’ll be able to keep on play­ing for as long as he can.

PHOTO: JACK LAWRIE

VET­ERAN GOLFER: One of the long­est serv­ing mem­bers of the Monto Golf Club, Keith Murr has played since he was 25.

PHOTO: JACK LAWRIE

In ad­di­tion to play­ing, Keith was the club’s green­keeper for roughly 12 years.

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