WILLIE THORNE IN SO MUCH PAIN

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Close friend of Wille, Former pro golfer and SKY TV commentator, Mark Roe
Close friend of Wille, Former pro golfer and SKY TV commentator, Mark Roe

  • Quote: ‘I am absolutely gutted to see Willie in so much pain and alone. He’s got my full weight behind him – no stone will be left unturned’ – British golfer Mark Roe

By Andrew Atkinson LEADER EXCLUSIVE

I am absolutely gutted to see Willie in so much pain and alone. He’s got my full weight behind him – and no stone will be left unturned.

Those are the words of British golfer and close friend of Willie Thorne, Mark Roe.

Roe, who made The Masters Tournament cut in 1996, featured in the PGA Championship, USA Open, The Open Championship and represented England in the Alfred Dunhill Cup in 1994, is helping to raise €30,000.

“I have been friends with Willie through all my golfing career,” Roe told me from Mijas, Spain.

Roe, who turned pro in 1981, said: “I have been in touch with my colleagues to raise financial help. It will be a difficult task right now.”

A GoFundMe has been set up, organised by Roe and Julie O’Neill.

Roe, who has donated €350, said: “The donation was to kick-start the fund.”

As Thorne receives intravenous antibiotics at home in Villamartin, following chemotherapy treatment for leukaemia at Torrevieja hospital, Roe said: “I have never seen Willie in so much pain – and alone.

“It is hoped to take the financial pressure off him and to help him get through leukaemia.

“Willie is stuck in bed. Stress is a killer in itself. It’s desperate times – I will do whatever I can.

“To try and raise €30,000 is a lot of money. But to donate any amount will help. €5 donations will help.”

Roe, 57, a former European Tour player, added: “Willie – whom I call ‘Big Willie’ – is a lovely man.

“I’ve had some great times with Willie. I always loved my snooker – and Willie loved his golf.”

Roe, who represented England in the World Cup in 1989, 1994 and 1995, said: “At the World snooker championship at The Crucible, Sheffield, I met all the great players – and we played golf.

See Also: Appeal launched for Willie Thorne

“Stephen Hendry, Dennis Taylor, myself, and Willie, amongst others. The WPBSA are looking to do something to help. I have spoken to John Virgo and he will contact snooker’s governing body.”

Roe said: “Willie goes deep with me. We have seen a lot of each other and there’s a Bond.

“I am absolutely gutted to see Willie in so much pain and alone. He’s got my full weight behind him – and no stone will be left unturned.”

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