A WIRRAL golfer has been selected for Team England for the upcoming Europe Nations Cup for Disabled Golfers.

David Reaney, 62, plays his golf out of Eastham Lodge and will now proudly fly the flag for England at the upcoming championships. The biennial event takes place from July 18-20 at Golf Course Hosel in Dusseldorf, Germany.

David suffered a stroke which left him registered blind at the age of 48 but despite being visually impaired he plays off a nine handicap and now also volunteers for the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) to support other people.

Originally from Wolverhampton and a talented footballer in his youth, David's stroke in 2010 would prove devastating. 

“I had no idea of what a brain attack was, what a stroke was," he said. "I couldn’t remember my telephone number. I couldn’t remember my address. I couldn’t remember anything. And what you’ve got to remember is, in my job before my stroke I could meet somebody and remember everything about them without having to write it down. So, at this time, I was in a distressed state. ‘How am I going to survive? How do I do this?’

“I just didn’t know what to do with myself. I slept for nearly 19 hours a day for 18 months. I was in a really bad way.”

A chance meeting with an old friend led to David rediscovering a love of golf.

“I’m pleased to say that when I got back to nine handicap just before Covid started, I was absolutely elated," he said.  "I really didn’t think I’d play again after my stroke. Getting back to nine handicap was an amazing experience, in fact, a very emotional experience for me.

"I can see the ball on the tee by turning my head dramatically to the right, and I can strike the ball. But after that, I’ve no idea, only by the feel, whether it’s gone left, right or centre, and they spot the ball for me.

"All I can say is there are so many opportunities for people with disabilities in sport in general, but certainly in golf. It’s been an absolutely amazing experience for me.

“Your life becomes more fulfilled. That’s how I feel now, giving back. I’m now volunteering with the RNIB. I want to give something back."

England finished 3rd in the scratch championship and 2nd in the nett event in 2022 and will be looking to go even better this time around.

England Golf Disability Team Manager, Robert Kedzlie, added: “As with any England team, our aim is to compete at the highest level and bring back more silverware from Dusseldorf. The level of competition is extremely high, and with three days of greensomes, foursomes and better-ball rounds, players will be pushed to the limit. But we will embrace the challenge in a fun environment, surrounded by some outstanding golfers.”