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Who was that masked man? on 25 July 2020.

Stef looking evil.
I’m not really a bandit!

There were a number of big questions to be answered this week. Would the requirement to wear a face covering put lots of people off playing? The answer would appear to be , No. We still managed to get a field of twenty players and we had the OK to try for at least one more group. What was the best method to stop your glasses fogging up? Coating with detergent, tissue under the top edge, tape over the top edge or not breathing. The latter option was ruled out early in the piece as was the option of running around the course and riding a bike. The application of tape seems to be about the most effective provided that it is both long enough and adequately attached both to your skin and the mask. Access to a good mirror is highly recommended to aid the application.

It has been a couple of months since Stef has been able to join us after a foiled attempt to grab a vacant spot a week or so ago. He racked up a couple of one pointers early in the round but then settled right down to finish the front with a very handy 20 points. Although the handicapper did wonder why he had circled a 7 on the 5th. In actual fact it was one of Stef’s odd looking 4s so it was a birdie that contributed to the 10 that we scored for the day. The back nine was a little less impressive, but a 17 points and a total of 37 for the round was enough to take the honours (and the dividend) for the day.

Mark is keen to get his handicap down as low as possible but he didn’t do his chances of getting there today as he was only able to play right to his handicap. However, it must be said that, when he did score he scored well and there were plenty of holes there that just begged for improvement. Brendon tried to improve his chances by nearly taking out JQ and Stef on the 8th tee with his drive from the 5th. A birdie putt on the 18th that just rimmed the hole and hung on the edge would also not have helped the cause. JQ managed to overcome his shock on the 8th to be just the one point behind his partner in crime though he did lay claim to some assistance from trees along the way. Whitey managed to drag Pepsi around and also played right to his handicap as well but with quite a few ‘could have done better’ scores.

Peter had a bit of a whinge about his recent handicap cuts and how he had lost all of these strokes on the back nine. It still didn’t stop him from going close to playing to it and, if not for a couple of no scores on the back, could very well have fronted the judge again. MattA continues to finish there or thereabouts and if he can just clear up on the ‘horror’ holes he soon won’t have to worry about mis-scoring on holes that he gets two strokes on. A chip in for a birdie on the 5th helped the scoring along no end. Rob didn’t start off either nine with any sort of form but made up for lost time around the rest of the course to score a very creditable 33 points to take the almost (actually) worthless fifth place.

It took a few groups for somebody to get a ball onto the 18th for the BallPin but, when somebody did, it was a beauty that finished a metre or so from the hole. Whitey was the man who put it there and it was pretty much unchallenged by the rest of the field. The ProPin on the 12th also took a while to get a contender on the card but Pepsi’s shot was not quite good enough and it was Brendon who was close enough to collect the pool. There was no estimate of distance so one can only assume that it was outside the 5m limit of the tape.

Bill was another one who took advantage from the surrounding forest. His drive on the 3rd went sharply right and into the trees and fell he knew not where. Despite there being every chance that it was outside the fence, the Beast continued looking and found the ball in the open just on the good side of the cut line along the fence. His drive on the 17th looked to be heading for Dight’s Falls until a convenient tree intervened and tossed it back into the fairway with a clear shot to the green.

Gordon reckons the only putt he sank for the day was for his birdie on the 15th although that did not stop him from placing third in the Seniors! Dennis managed to buy himself a draughtie on the 15th and so had to persuade Brendon to unmask to drink his cappuccino after the round. MattH never was all that comfortable wearing the mask but there was no suggestion that it had caused him to fall short of the red markers on the 3rd. Matt was blaming the presence of a witches hat marking work in progress by the ground-staff but a little birdie suggests that was not to blame and that he almost didn’t make the grade with his second shot.

Results for Saturday, 25 July 2020
1st Stefan Belevski(37) 2nd Mark Minney(36) 2nd Brendon Mitchell(36) 2nd John Quinlan(36) 2nd Rodney White(36) 3rd Peter Damou(35) 4th Matthew Aforozis(34) 5th Robert Priems(33)

Seniors Results: 1st Bill Eastoe (30) 2nd Harry Boughen (29) 3rd Dennis Ward (28) 3rd Gordon Hill (28)

Nearest the Pin Results: ProPin12th Brendon Mitchell BallPin No 1 18th Rodney White BallPin No 2 – No contest

Da moon was new and da air was cold on 18 July 2020.

Peter putter!
This is getting to be a habit!

It was light enough to play significantly earlier today, partly because the sun is getting up a little earlier but mainly because there was no cloud bank out in the north east casting a shadow over our little world at Ivanhoe. There was a hint of high cloud but not enough to hide the weakly shining, almost new moon. The clear skies meant that the ground temperature could get low enough to create some frost down on the flats and the fingers took a fair bit of persuading to have any sort of feeling other than that one of dropping off. Dennis was torn between using his rechargeable hand warmers or the one timers, of which he had a plenteous supply, that lasted a lot longer supplying warmth. Duration won the day.

We had our full complement of 20 players on the tees today and we seem to have managed to get away promptly although the round time of about three hours forty-five was perhaps just a little below the pace we would like to see. Only nineteen finished as JQ had to dash off to a domestic emergency and we all hope that all is well in that department. Harry volunteered to play on alone and, despite everybody’s expectations, he did not suddenly start getting par on every hole though it must be said that the back nine was much more respectable than the front.

At the start of the day some opinions were expressed, particularly after finding the second tee right back on the bank and the flag at the very back of the green, that the winning score was likely to be even at best. That prognostication could very well have been true, if it hadn’t been for Peter Damou (couldn’t resist getting in that rhyme!). Pete scorched it in with a +4 and did his handicap a bit more harm but maybe we should be bringing back points and the winner’s penalty. Pepsi took a little while to get going. This might have been because he was involved in a fight to the death with the Beast in their matchplay round. And just to give you an idea on the second hole, two of our longer hitters and lower markers had to play out to sevens to finalise the hole in the match. Pepsi got an early lead and, although Bill tried valiantly to peg him back, the match went dormie 4 at the 14th and a square on the 15th gave the match to Pepsi 4 and 3. The next big battles will be between the Andrews and between the Priems. Should be fun to watch!

Adam had been playing with JQ up until the 6th and joined up with Brent on the 7th and promptly went into a slump with three consecutive gashes to round out the nine three down. After a bit of a hesitant start on the back, he got his mojo back and scored five consecutive plus scores and finished the round exactly square. Harry had a bit of strife with trees on the front nine particularly on the third and ninth and so he wasn’t necessarily the happiest of campers. Things improved on the back and a monster putt from off the green for a birdie on the 11th improved the state of mind considerably. Brendon was happy with his game except for the fact that he three putted seven of the last nine holes. Dennis started off well but had a bit of a bad run on the first half of the back nine and the best that he could do was tie it up with Harry and Brendon on -1.

MattH had nothing good to report about his round. He started off with a couple of plus in the first three holes but after that they were few and far between. SOS, on the other hand, started off a bit poorly, settled, then put in a burst at the start of the back and then faded in the run down the straight. Whitey was looking as flash as a rat with a gold tooth (literally). Unfortunately, every time he looked like putting a run of scores on the positive side of the ledger, an equal run in the opposite direction undid all the good work. And so he was one of the trio that would have scored a point if there was a point on offer.

The BallPin today was on the 18th and Dennis was hanging around anxiously watching to see if anybody would knock him off for the ball. He had to wait until the last group when Chrispy knocked him off big time. It wasn’t quite the ‘almost hole in one’ that Chris claimed but it was close enough for him to sink the birdie putt and contribute to the tally of 11 for the day. Gordon also helped the total with one on the 14th with a long curving putt from off the green. How good is golf? The ProPin was on the 12th. And, just a note, during the restricted competition, the 5m minimum has been lifted. Anywhere on the green and verge is valid but, if the distance is less than 5m then it should be measured and recorded. If you want, metre paces can be recorded for outside five. Anyway, the ultimate winner, at four paces, was Adam. Adam also went close to raiding the Eagle’s Nest when his approach shot on the first rimmed the cup. It was travelling a bit fast to drop and the 2.5m return putt proved too much and a par was the result.

Damo wasn’t particularly happy today and was heard muttering something about a walk spoiled. He invested in a new ‘fat’ grip on his putter during the week and he reckoned it made his ‘yips’ worse. He may yet set fire to it, or he might give it another chance. Time will tell. Brent was another bewailing a long series of three putt greens. Porks lost sight of his ball on the first. He reckons it was too dark and foggy. And he wasn’t even in the first group. It was quite easily found by a following group nestled behind the pencil pine beside the path up the the second tee. Definitely unplayable. Although a lot of the tees were well back, on the fourth, they were well forward and off the prepared area. And, what is more, the blue markers were placed in front of the reds (just). That is, until they were moved back marginally to be, at least, on the same line. No wonder Chrispy was heard to be grumpy about the set up of the course.

Results for Saturday, 18 July 2020
1st Peter Damou(+4) 2nd Andrew Petricola(+1) 3rd Adam King(□) 4th Harry Boughen(-1) 4th Brendon Mitchell(-1) 4th Dennis Ward(-1) 5th Matt Hunt(-3) 5th Stephen O’Sullivan(-3) 5th Rodney White(-3)

Seniors Results: 1st Dennis Ward (-1) 1st Harry Boughen (-1) 2nd Andrew Blight ( -4) 2nd Bill Eastoe ( -4) 3rd Chris Priems ( -5) 3rd Targe Mifsud ( -5)

Nearest the Pin Results: ProPin12th Adam King BallPin No 1 18th Chris Priems BallPin No 2 – No contest

Let’s do the slime walk again on 11 July 2020

Rob looking at all angles
At least you can honestly say you were Robbed!

It was barely first light when the first pair set out for what promised to be something of a Rocky (I mean Mushy) Horror Show. Despite the best efforts at discerning the flight of the ball it took Adam and Brendon a few minutes to locate the spot for their second shot and so our efforts to get the groups off in record time to make a case for closer spacings got off to a rocky start. Still, despite the lack of light and the delay we did, all eight groups, get away within the allocated time frame, which augurs well for squeezing in some more pairs as the sun rises earlier down the track. The really big question was, would the rain hold off until we finished.

Now, you could be forgiven for thinking that, with the wet condition of the course that the scoring potential could be just a little on the low side. But, just as with race horses, there are mud runners and there are others that prefer a firm track. Who would have guessed that the best mud runner of all would be President Rob. Now there’s a name that the racing syndicate could consider for their latest nag! Perhaps it was that he was worrying so much about how much and how the money for the day should be split that he didn’t have a chance to think about his golf. There had been some discussion as to whether it was reasonable to be handicapping on what are effectively social rounds. It must be said that the tune changed a little when Rob laid his cards on the table showing a very impressive tally of 44 points.

There was a feeling that, when Mark’s handicap was calculated after his third card recently, it might have been a little on the generous side. That situation has gone some way to being corrected after he came home with a ‘not quite good enough’ 41 points. Breathing right down Mark’s neck was another of the young blades who can whack a ball a lot better than his handicap indicates. MattA managed to gather a total of 40 points with a storming back nine after an average front that only managed to bring in 17.

Daniel had an even more average front nine with just 14 points to show at the turn. He then scored 15 points on the next four holes by variously chipping in or putting in from off the green. The pace slowed a little after the blitzkreig but 24 points in a nine is good going in anybody’s terms. Dennis used his Thursday round to iron out some wrinkles and use up all of his ‘bad’ shots. JQ was just gob-smacked that he could put together 38 points and be in danger, if there were championship points on offer, of missing out on a podium spot. Ryan, on the other hand, took great delight in playing exactly to his handicap and, in the process, beating Noodles (again) in their little ‘matchplay’ competition.

The Nearest the Pin competition today was not really a competition. After struggling to find their tee shots on the first, Adam and Brendon certainly found their range later in the round. On the 12th, Adam got his name on the card with a shot to 3.56m that nobody was able to better and so he easily collected the ProPin pool. On the 18th, Brendon finished, maybe a metre and a half, past the hole to score the closest shot for the BallPin. Unfortunately, he took three putts to get it in the hole and so he did not contribute, on that hole, to the total of ten birdies that we managed for the day.

The pace of play was fairly brisk with 3 hours fifteen to twenty being the sort of time taken. JQ complained that it didn’t really leave any time to chat. It was suggested that Adam had worked hard to keep Brendon moving out in front. Targe got himself to trouble on the 11th and reportedly took rather more shots than appeared on the card. His claim that he was in grass up to his knees suggests that it was on a well mowed part of the course.

Porks managed to drive the 11th and left himself a 3m putt for an eagle. According to reports between him and Noodles there were three putts for eagles, none of which came off and so the dear old Eagle can rest easy for at least another week as she guards her nest. Rob played one of his ‘gorilla’ shots on the 13th and went very close to taking out Peter and Matt who he said he thought were well out of range. Gordo and Harry also had a close call on the 13th when a ball from the 10th whistled between them and landed about a metre from where Gordo’s ball lay.

Harry wasn’t one hundred percent happy that his approach to the 14th had finished a bit short on the face of the grass bunker. The chip, however ran true and never looked like missing to roll in for a birdie. H even cracked a smile. The pin at the 17th was well back towards the chain wire fence and Dennis had left his ball barely on the front edge. After a bit of a struggle to get even to that spot, he calmly rapped it and judged the pace and direction perfectly to sink the putt for his bogie and two points.

With the current restrictions, it is not appropriate that we gather in any way after the round as a group. We certainly raised the ire of the management today as they are just as liable for any breach of the rules on their premises as are those who breach the rules. So, while it is probably OK to have a drink with your playing companion (suitable separated), it is not OK for multiple pairs to stand around in close proximity. So, there will be no announcement of results except via the web-site, Facebook page and email. Provision will be made for collecting the score cards. People should disperse and vacate the premises as soon as practicable after the round and after you have passed on your juicy bits of gossip to the web-master.

Results for Saturday, 11 July 2020
1st Robert Priems(44) 2nd Mark Minney(41) 3rd Matthew Aforozis(40) 4th Daniel O’Rourke(38) 4th John Quinlan(38) 4th Dennis Ward(38) 5th Ryan Porker(36)

Seniors Results: 1st Dennis Ward (38) 2nd Harry Boughen (35) 3rd Gordon Hill (30)

Nearest the Pin Results: ProPin12th Adam King BallPin No 1 18th Brendon Mitchell BallPin No 2 – No contest

When the rain tumbles down in July – Monthly Medal.

Peter putter!
Who said a new putter wouldn’t help!

There are weather forecasts and there is reality. And, just sometimes, the two coincide. Fortunately, the predicted 10mm of rain came and went well before tee time but the evidence was very clear on the course. The ground staff had very carefully placed the pin on the first in the most water-logged part of the green. With the hole full to the brim with water, at least you had a nice clean ball to play with from the second tee. The rain has obviously done wonders for the vigour of the plantings around the course as Bob was amazed at how the shrubbery just ‘popped’ up in front of him on the second tee. Or maybe he just didn’t get much elevation on his tee shot. No suggestion that it was a draughtie though so it can’t have been too bad.

Attendance today was a bit of a mixed bag. There were more ins and outs than wedding tackle on a honeymoon. In the end, we managed to get twenty-three members out into the swamp-lands but only twenty-two managed to finish. Nobody drowned. It was just that Enzo took a bit of a slip on the hill down from the 10th and wrenched his knee and elected to call it a day. Better not be too serious as everybody is looking forward to taste testing the salami. Seriously though, get better old matey and we’ll see you back soon.

So what if the course is a bit boggy and you rack up an eight on the second hole. Splash on regardless and line up those putts and, as they say in the classics, the scores will come. Now, it must be said, that, in the process of making that double par, Peter was making good use of the 6th fairway and one shot was made so close to a tree that he managed to take the head off his favourite fairway wood. So, the fact that he was a bit behind the ‘eight’ ball and one club down makes it all the more remarkable that he was able to come home with a total of 85 for a net result of 67. Maybe the new putter really did work wonders.

Noodles left a putt agonisingly short of the hole on the 18th green and he reckoned that that could have cost him the Medal. Unfortunately, he would have needed more than that as Pete would have matched him off the stick and beaten him easily in a countback. He’d have needed a one putt green rather than a three. Daniel was also a bit hard done by on the 18th when several ‘fluffed’ shots brought him back to the pace and a share of second only. Dennis didn’t have an ‘if only’ moment, just a series of ‘not quite’ pars.

Adam left his double par until later in the round on the 13th. A more respectable result there and he could easily have challenged for the top spot. Pepsi reckoned he couldn’t buy a putt today so maybe the Birthday Birdie can cheer him up with a best wishes for tomorrow. There were a fair swag of members gathered together for the fourth place just one stroke behind. Craig struggled a bit with the second, as did a lot of others. Gordo was considerably lighter on his feet today after submitting his curling (and greying) locks to the attentions a barber. Damo was spotted taking professional advice in the carpark before tee time. It is not clear whether the advice helped either the score or the pain in his knee.

Last points for the day went to another gaggle of players. Porks managed to hit a shot into a tree on the 10th and, apparently, it didn’t come down and cost him some strokes. JQ kept very schtum about his game and the card does not have too many tales to tell either. Brent was all fired up to be beaten easily in his match against the Beast. But, as it turned out, he played well enough to feature in the final group. As for the match, after eighteen holes it was all square. And so the protagonists repaired to the practice green for the chip-off to determine the winner. Reports have it that both players seemed determined to put the ball nowhere near the hole and in the end it took four rounds of fierce competition to determine that Bill was the victor.

The first BallPin was on the 12th today and there was a fairly fierce competition. However the shot of the day went to Daniel who finished only a few centimetres past the hole. He rattled the putt in for his birdie and added to the tally of ten that were carded for the day. This is more than can be said for one group who all scored pars on the 11th and then all three-putted for bogies on the 12th. The second BallPin was on the 18th. Only one person got their name on the sheet after the Beast, in the first group, put it to a metre or so on the top tier. Bill also took the ball on the 18th last week and this week was even closer to the hole. If he keeps improving at this rate, we can look forward to a hole-in-one some time soon. The ProPin on the 15th went begging again and will be a double jackpot next week. Peter was hopeful but the consensus estimate was that it was at least 5.2m. There was no official report on the actual distance.

Chrispy didn’t have much of a day and this was typified by him hitting a ball from the 15th tee that would have counted for seven. Damo was really looking forward to Chris putting for a snowman but Chris did find his second ball and managed to get down for a seven. Porks and Damo were at it on match terms on the back nine again. Not sure how it ended overall but on the 13th, Ryan nearly went OOB, shanked it down the track and then chipped it in for birdie. Not at all fazed, Damo putted it from off the green and matched the birdie result to halve the hole. And, speaking about the real matchplay, Bill’s hopes were up on the 14th when Brent’s drive headed for the carpark. Imagine his dismay when Brent matched his five to square the hole. Daniel managed a shin shot on the 8th tee. As he walked onto the tee he idly swung his club around, somehow fumbled it and gave himself a good whack on the shins. And, boy, did it hurt!

Results for Saturday, 04 July 2020
1st Peter Damou(67) 2nd Stephen Butterfield(68) 2nd Daniel O’Rourke(68) 2nd Dennis Ward(68) 3rd Adam King(70) 3rd Andrew Petricola(70) 4th Craig Cameron(71) 4th Gordon Hill(71) 4th Damien Lee(71) 5th Ryan Porker(72) 5th John Quinlan(72) 5th Brent Rowley(72)

Seniors Results: 1st Dennis Ward (68) 2nd Craig Cameron (71) 2nd Gordon Hill (71) 3rd Bill Eastoe (74) 3rd Bob McDonald (74)

Nearest the Pin Results: ProPin15th Jackpot BallPin No 1 12th Daniel O’Rourke BallPin No 2 18th Bill Eastoe