A world away from the perfect fairways of the pro golf tour, Colin Montgomerie gave a master class in one of the world’s unlikeliest driving ranges.
For over an hour he gave personal coaching to forces golf fans spread out across the windswept dust of Camp Bastion, Britain’s massive supply base in Afghanistan.
As he expertly drove ball-after-ball onto targets borrowed from the rifle ranges, he joked how helicopter gunships low overhead might cramp his drive.
The Ryder Cup-winning captain spent four days in Afghanistan between international tournaments, boosting morale and equipping buy cialis online Bastion’s very first Golf course, with thousands of pounds worth of donated equipment.
He told troops he did not realise how few stars had risked a trip to Helmand.
“I thought there were so-called celebrities and sportsmen out here on a weekly basis.”
“But it doesn’t happen. This is irregular and it’s fantastic to come out here and showcase golf to you guys.”
Until now military golf addicts have been starved. It’s a year since Captain Jason Griffiths of REME picked up a club. He said that despite his grumpy image Monty could not have been more supportive.
“There’s been rumours that he’s not a nice man,” Griffiths told BFBS Forces’ News.
“But he’s absolutely fantastic. We managed to have lunch with him and then just hit five or six balls with him watching and he was quite complementary.”
The military returned the favour by giving him a front seat ride in their Jackal all-terrain 4×4 and then coaching him in their speciality. His skill with issue pistol and rifle impressed the experts.
“He’s certainly naturally talented as a rifleman as you can see by the grouping of shots on the target,” said instructor Staff Sergeant Chris Palmer.
“He’s always been a massive idol of mine. I’m a big golf fan myself so actually, finally to meet Colin Montgomerie is a big thrill.”
Like previous celebrities he left humbled by meeting those at the sharp end.
“When you see the casualties and you see what everyone does here at Camp Bastion to keep the guys on the front line alive, it givers you a different perspective on things,” he said.
“Suddenly, does the four-foot put that you missed, does it matter? And the answer is a very big no.”