Our sport­ing he­roes are in the spot­light

Macclesfield Express - - SPECIAL FOCUS ON MACC’S SPORTING STARS - ALEX HIB­BERT

ACCLESFIELD golfer Jamie Donaldson brought the sport­ing spot­light on Mac­cles­field by play­ing a key role in Europe’s Ry­der Cup tri­umph.

The Mot­tram-based sports­man, who is also vice-pres­i­dent of Mac­cles­field Golf Club, helped the Euro­pean team win the tour­na­ment last month after be­ing se­lected to play in it for the first time.

But Jamie’s not the first ath­lete to put Mac­cles­field on the map when it comes to sport­ing prow­ess.

The town’s his­tory is lit­tered with ath­letes who have tri­umphed at the top of their cho­sen sport.

Bob Bur­rows, of Beech Bank, Mac­cles­field, wrote the book ‘Mac­cles­field Hall of Fame’, about key fig­ures who are from or lived in the town and made a con­tri­bu­tion to the his­tory and so­cial cul­ture of Great Bri­tain.

He said: “When wrote my book in 2010 wrote about Jamie as his tal­ent was clear to see then.

“But then there’s so many sport­ing su­per­stars from Mac­cles­field – Eng­land crick­eter JohnAgnew, crick­eter Fred Mil­lett, cy­clist Reg Har-

IMIris, for­mer Eng­land Rugby Union player Steve Smith, one of Bri­tain’s most fa­mous Hockey play­ers Sean Ker­ley – the list goes on.

“For a town of its size it has pro­duced so many peo­ple that have risen to the top of their fields.”

One of the town’s most fa­mous sport­ing ex­ports is Sir Ben Ainslie, who was born in the town and spent his for­ma­tive years learn­ing to sail on Redesmere Lake in Sid­ding­ton.

The four-time Olympic gold medal­list is the most suc­cess­ful sailor in the com­pe­ti­tion’s his­tory.

for­mer King’s School pupil, Eng­land cricket coach Peter Moores grew up in a house on Ch­ester Road in Mac­cles­field and would play with an old bat and ten­nis ball with his brothers in a play­ground near Christ Church.

It was in his early years play­ing in the streets, and then a t

Aschool and at Mac­cles­field Cricket Club, where he de­vel­oped the skills as a wicket-keeper and bats­man which would see him score 7,000 first class runs and take over 500 catches – and coach Sus­sex to a County Cham­pi­onship in 2003, and Lan­cashire to the ti­tle in 2011 - mak­ing him the only coach to have won with two dif­fer­ent coun­ties.

Dame Sarah Storey is another of Mac­cles­field’s most fa­mous ath­letes. She has won 22 Par­a­lympic medals – 11 of which are gold medals.

For­mer Poyn­ton High School stu­dent Sarah, who lives in Dis­ley, is also a 20-time world cham­pion in swimming and cy­cling, a 21-time Euro­pean cham­pion and has held 72 dif­fer­ent world records. Another Par­a­lympian, Libby Clegg, was born in Bolling­ton and went to St Gre­gory’s Pri­mary School. She is a Par­a­lympic sil­ver medal­list and cur­rent World Cham­pion in

the T12 100m and 200m sprints.

StokeCity’s Peter Crouch lived in Poyn­ton for the first six months of his life and now lives in Prest­bury.

Another slew of foot­ball stars have also taken up res­i­dence in af­flu­ent Prest­bury’s, in­clud­ing Wayne Rooney and for­mer-pro Rob­bie Sav­age.

Some­one who’s more used talk­ing about rather than play­ing sport is Alan Green, one of the BBC’s most con­tro­ver­sial, and re­spected, com­men­ta­tors, who lives in the town.

And up and com­ing pro­fes­sional boxer and proud ‘Macc Lad’ Liam Hanrahan is also mak­ing a name for him­self in the ring.

For­mer Eng­land Rugby Union cap­tain Fran Cot­ton - fa­mous for the ‘mud­man’ im­age snapped dur­ing a game against the Ju­nior All Blacks - also lives in Sut­ton.

Mac­cles­field MP David Rutley also praised the town’s sport­ing legacy.

He said: “What this list shows is that it’s not just tra­di­tional sports like foot­ball we have, there’s a rich vein of sport­ing tal­ent.”

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