Would the course be wet, was the question on many lips after the bit of a downpour that we had during the week. The answer was, no, because the ground was so dry beforehand that any rainfall was soon absorbed, the clay expanded, and the cracks closed up. As a result, there was perhaps a little less run than in recent times, and the greens offered their fair share of challenges as they held onto their coating of dew until well into the morning. After almost causing a shiver, and actually causing some finger numbness, the temperature climbed enough to be rather pleasant by the time our twelve participants had completed their round and settled their scorecards. Pepsi even entertained the crowd with his impression of ‘the little steam engine that could’ as we waited for the final tallies to be submitted.
When the dust had settled, we ended up with a tie for first place. Old Reliable seems to be back in his ‘Old Reliable’ form, and is doing his darnedest to protect his handicap as much as possible by playing to 36 points on both of his last outings. A couple of weeks ago, that only netted him 4th place, rather than the top ranking today. Keith took on Trev in their first round match today. Trev was on the verge of conceding even before they left the Clubhouse, and talked about that option after one or two holes. Ruthless operator that he is, Keith gave no quarter, and polished Trev off at the 14th, 5 and 4. With that little demolition out of the way, Keith stormed home to put together 19 points on the back nine to join Craig on the top step of the podium.
Now, Geoff could very well have been singing the blues after his drive on the first did not even reach the ‘blues’. Saved from having an airie by the skinniest of one of his whiskers, Geoff pulled himself together and scored pretty well for the next eleven holes. The wheels then developed a bit of a squeak, but didn’t quite fall off, and he finished with 34 points at the end of the round. Pepsi had a few words to say to himself, particularly on the front nine, where trees created some problems for long shots and the putts just would not roll out or turn as expected. The warmer conditions on the back nine seemed to suit better, and a one over par for the nine turned the result around, and he also came into second place with Geoff.
Ryan also did not set the world on fire with his first tee shot, and the front nine generally was sort of average, especially on the 8th for some reason. He fared much better on the back and finished up in third place with his tally of 33 points. Harry is hoping that the after-effects of the Moderna vaccine explains his lack of stamina today. It didn’t affect his shot making overly, but the pars proved entirely elusive, and there were 15 two pointers on his card with his one stroke per hole handicap. As a result, the best he could manage was 31 points with a couple of ‘unfortunate’ misses. Bill, on the other hand, was wondering how his game could be so different from one week to the next. When he did make good contact, the ball definitely stayed contacted, but the putting was a bit of a let-down from time to time. On the third, though, he did not need to putt, as he chipped in for a birdie, and Harry called it from the moment the ball hit the green. As a result of the four points, he joined Harry to share 4th place.
Hear ye, hear ye! Prez has a new club! Craig had a chipping iron that was surplus to his requirements, and volunteered to let Rob ‘try and buy’. It took Rob nine holes to get the feel of the newfangled gadget, but it did seem to pay dividends on the back nine, where he stormed home with nineteen points. Now, the thing is, Craig also marked Rob’s card, and robbed him of a stroke on the 8th, where, Rob, on his highly inflated handicap gets two. As a result, Rob was elevated to a share of 4th rather than a share of 5th. That left Adam on his Pat Malone on thirty points and in fifth place. The interesting thing about Adam’s round is that, after two holes, he had one point. After nine holes, he had twenty-one points, thanks to a couple of birdies that grabbed him four points each. Those two birdies helped us to our rather skinny total of five for the day.
Porks would have to be the most knocked-off player today. On the first BallPin at the 4th, he was knocked off by Adam. On the second BallPin at the 18th he was knocked off by Pepsi. There was a Jackpot ProPin on the 12th today, and although some did get onto the green, none were within the 5m limit and there will be a double Jackpot there next week. SOS is hoping against hope that it does not go off again next week so that he can have a crack at it the week after. It seems he has been inspired to win more after finding out that he had only won 7 ProPins since January 2016. Check out the ProPin Pirates report to see where you stand. And, keep your eye out for the upcoming Ball Busters report for the BallPin results.
The Birthday Birdie will be busy again this week, as he has to get around to meet and greet with Porks and Whitey. If Whitey plays next week, you might try putting the hard word on him, particularly if his nag keeps winning.
Only two more Saturdays to get Round 1 matches out of the way. Yes, work and family can get in the way of things, but we would like to get a result one way or another in the three matches remaining. Round 2 matches can play anytime, but the turn up and play rule kicks in on 07 May. So, check out your opponent and talk to one another to settle on an agreeable time. Round 2 has until have until 18th June, but it won’t take long to come around.
Results for Saturday, 23 April 2022
1st Craig Cameron (36) 1st Keith Delzoppo (36) 2nd Geoff Lyall (34) 2nd Andrew Petricola (34) 3rd Ryan Porker (33) 4th Harry Boughen (31) 4th Bill Eastoe (31) 4th Robert Priems (31) 5th Adam King (30)
Seniors Results: 1st Craig Cameron (36) 1st Keith Delzoppo (36) 2nd Geoff Lyall (34) 3rd Bill Eastoe (31) 3rd Harry Boughen (31)
Nearest the Pin Results: ProPin – 12th Jackpot BallPin No 1 – 4th Adam King BallPin No 2 – 18th Andrew Petricola
Maaagnificent, as Rex Hunt was wont to say. What more to say about the weather and conditions at our favourite track. Though Pepsi might have had a different track entirely in mind as he lined up with thirteen others to take on the somewhat thirsty, and, occasionally, baring fairways. It was noted that a member of the groundstaff was assiduously watering the practice green mid-morning, much to the chagrin of the members of the public trying to get in their few putts before tee time. The longer run meant that there were more than a few shots to be played from unaccustomed positions, but that did not prevent more than a few impressive scores being handed in. As usual, there were a few that ‘got away’, but the most original excuse came from SOS who revealed to his group that he had just passed the big five-O. The best wishes supposedly went to his head, and he presented with gashes on the next three holes. Generous spirit that he is, he opened a tab for all to drink his health after the round, which was much appreciated by those that could hang around. Coincidentally, the tab came to sixty-nine, which created its fair share of mirth and banter, both inside and outside the clubhouse.
However, the round of the day, would have to be that put together by Bill. He started off in fine style with a birdie on the first, and completed the front nine just two over the card, and three points to the good. He could only manage a three over the card on the back nine to add another plus to the total, which was enough to grab first place with his +4. Ryan, on the other hand, managed to equal par off the stick on the front nine, and turned for home with +4 on the card. After a great pitch into the 17th green that left him within a metre of the hole, there was every chance that he would match par on the back as well. Unfortunately, the birdie putt did not fall, and neither did the par putt. As a result, the back was three over and one down, which left Ryan in second place with +3.
SOS was feeling pretty pleased with himself either side of the halfway mark as he put together five pluses on the trot. That’s when the birthday ‘celebrations’ kicked in, and he gave a fair number of them back to finally finish the round at +2 and third place. There is no truth to the rumour that he is planning to give up the Highway Patrol for Lost and Found. After Gordon found and returned one of SOS’s many recent losses, SOS promptly lost it again on the second (in plain sight, apparently). While speaking of plain sight, Gordon’s drive on the 12th was a bit right and short, and it headed back down the hill, prompting a comment that it ‘could’ have reached the penalty area. Harry and Stan had trouble understanding why the ongoing search, when the fluorescent yellow ball was lying plainly in sight well short of said penalty area. None so blind…..
Harry was a little disappointed with his front nine when none of his swatch of bogies turned into pars. The back nine was quite a different matter, except for the effect of a visit to the sand-trap on his chance to score on the 13th. The birdie on the 17th, one of the sixteen that we scored today, was seen more as a ‘wasted’ shot than a cause for celebration. Brendon, on the other hand, managed to account for four of our birdies, but punctuated his card, particularly on the back nine, with a fair collection of lost holes. In the end, he finished the round with +1, to share the fourth podium spot with Harry. And, to finish off, it wasn’t noticed at the announcements, that Dale had put his inside card into us rather than his Club card. As a result, the handicap difference meant that his club score became square to the card, and he filled the last spot by himself. CJ and Ken will have to console themselves with the Seniors point that they got instead.
The ProPin today was on the 12th. Harry paced his out, which indicated that the ball was close to the 5m limit. The tape measure proved that was the case by a mere 150mm more. Over-clubbed again! Anyway, enough of the sob stories, the good news is, that there will be a Jackpot on the hole next week. The first BallPin was on the 4th, and Dale was the one to get close enough to get his name on the chit after he managed to ease out Brendon from yet another NTP win. The BallPin on the 18th was uncontested, and probably uncontestable, after Pepsi finished very close from the first group.
Gordon had his fair share of troubles today, and he was looking for every opportunity to improve his chances. He even tried to claim relief from a ‘wood-chipped’ area in the middle of the 11th fairway because of some random spillage from the construction of the storage piles adjacent to the 13th tee. Keith managed to drop his Garmin beside the 12th green, and Stan was able to return it to him at the 15th tee. There is no evidence that Keith’s game was any better, or worse, for not having it. Dale went close to doing himself an injury when he ‘fell’ off the 7th tee. Ryan was a little distracted on the 13th green by the presence of ‘mating’ bees on his line of putt. He reckons that when he politely told them to get a room, one of them tried to attack him. The amateur entomologists among us reckon that, unless they were ‘new age’ bees, mating was a bit of an unlikely activity.
The amateur ornithologists will be interested to know that the Birthday Birdie will be out and about this week to carry some best wishes to Joe Demir. Everybody will be hoping against hope that Joe will come along next week and will emulate SOS’s generosity.
Don’t forget that time is running out for the completion of Round 1 of the Matchplay. Four matches still to play. Reminders will be sent out, but please look at the results table to see for yourself who you are. If round 2 want to play their round, they can. The turn up and play rule for round 2 will start to apply on 07 May.
Results for Saturday, 16 April 2022
1st Bill Eastoe (+4) 2nd Ryan Porker (+3) 3rd Stephen O’Sullivan (+2) 4th Harry Boughen (+1) 4th Brendon Mitchell (+1) 5th Dale Webb (□)
Seniors Results: 1st Bill Eastoe (+4) 2nd Harry Boughen (+1) 3rd Chris Priems (-1) 3rd Ken Watson (-1)
Nearest the Pin Results: ProPin – 12th Jackpot BallPin No 1 – 4th Dale Webb BallPin No 2 – 18th Andrew Petricola
Alleluia! The Priems Cup finally got some feet on the ground. Thirty-six feet to be precise. And even more, if you count Jake and Todd Miles who joined us for the entertainment, and, in Todd’s case, for someone to play along with. It seems that CJ and Rob got into his earwax, and he could very well be interested in more forays into the delights of our little coterie. The reluctance of the east coast depressions to venture beyond the Murray means that the course is still a bit thirsty in places, and some cracks are almost big enough to swallow a ball, given the correct speed and angle of attack. The day was warm and sunny, due largely to the north-easterly which did spring up later in the morning and caused some reconsideration of club selection, particularly on the last several holes of the back nine, where it was heads or tails most of the way. So, the stage was set for some exciting match ups, and some good (and not so good) golf.
First up we saw Stef come up against Mark, and, coincidentally, they also just happened to agree that this would be their first round Championship match. With a lot riding on the outcome, and not a lot of difference in handicap, the match started out looking like it could go down to the wire. Except that Stef started playing like a man possessed, and he ended up equalling par for the course at the end of the round with a very impressive tally of 42 points to take out the best card of the day. Mark tried valiantly against this onslaught, but in the end, the match wound up at the 16th, 3 and 2. There is no obvious reason why Stef was playing with a ball clearly marked with the letters CK, unless it is an obscure message of support for Ukraine.
The Beast was pitted against the Brent, and it was pretty much a stroke for stroke affair, with only one stroke difference. And, as it turned out, the one hole where the stroke was given, it was not needed as Bill had an uncharacteristic triple. It was one of the few slips, and despite Brent’s best efforts, Bill came home with 3 and 2 as the winning margin. If the next match had been a football match, the result would have been classified as the turnaround of the century. Can you believe that, at the end of the first quarter, Captain Chris was at the mercy of Captain Rob to the tune of four holes? It seems that, at this point, the coach gave the team a good tongue lashing, and they lifted and tightened up their game. Over the next two quarters, the margin was ground down point by point, and at three-quarter time, the score was all square. In the final quarter, Captain Chris put the knife into Captain Rob’s heart and polished off the match 3 and 1. There were reports of Captain Chris almost crying in the first quarter, and that there very well could have been some heavy sledging at half-time, including the use of the ‘s’ word.
As he consoled himself over a bottle or two last night, Captain Chris decided that his team was ‘unbalanced’, and he needed some more low handicappers. When a cancellation came in and Jake decided (or was told) not to play a match, Chris was not slow to steal Porks from his little brother. This turned out to be a telling move, as Ryan was able to prevail over Geoff with a score-line of 2 and 1. Although Geoff was three down at one stage, he did stage a bit of a comeback to get within a point at one stage. This was with some thanks to winning a hole with a score of eight. Harry took on Trev, who, despite being in obvious pain from a gammy knee et al, grimaced and bore it for the whole round. For nine holes, the match was pretty evenly balanced, as Harry managed to give up chances to overcome the conceded strokes. A bit of a burst around the turn, tipped the score in Harry’s favour, but, despite Trev thinking it was done and dusted about three holes earlier, the match ended at the 16th 3 and 2. At which point, Trev came alive and matched H stroke for stroke over the last two holes. Thank goodness the match was finished, says H.
Adam matched up to Stan on an equal footing as far as handicap went. Unfortunately, Stan has still not managed to extricate himself from his post-streak depression, and he struggled to match Adam, who seemed to be on a post-break high with relatively few aberrations other than a super-shank from the tee on the 12th. The match finished quite early after the 13th, 7 and 5. Craig was up against SOS, who was very pleased to get five strokes. Apparently, the ‘s’ word did not raise its ugly head, and there might have been only one lost ball to mar SOS’s game. As a result, although the match tilted a little to the SOS side early on, equilibrium was eventually restored and the game teeter-tottered along until the result depended on the outcome of the 18th hole. An easy win for Craig finished the match 1 up. Blighty started out alright and was only slightly behind Brendon at the turn. A run of six ‘horror’ holes on the trot turned a potential contest into a rout and Brendon walked away with the match 5 and 3. Last match to report was the battle of the giants, between Ken and Targe. Early on, the spoils were fairly evenly divided, but, after a while, Ken managed to get his nose in front. Although Targe fought a valiant rear-guard action, he was never really able to capitalise on any gains made, and he finally had to run up the white flag at the 15th going down 5 and 4.
This meant that TeamChris had prevailed over TeamRob to the tune of five matches to four. Now, what would have happened if he hadn’t pulled rank and pinched Porks for his own team? Stanza 2 of this year’s Priems Cup competition will be run on 17 September, so pencil the date in your diary. The aggregate scores for the two stanzas will determine which Captain gets their name first on the list. Or will honours be shared? Only time will tell.
We also had our usual (almost) nearest the pin competition. It’s hard to get good help these days. Our venerable Captain(s) were so engrossed in something that they neglected to put out the BallPin marker on the 4th. So, no contest there. The ProPin was supposed to be on the 12th, and once again, there was a prospect of no contest. But, when Jake put his shot on the 15th to 3.92m, they decided that maybe the ProPin could be on the 15th instead. Harry went close to being inside Jake, but in the end, the money stayed in his hot little hand. Jake did not make the birdie from that distance, but that was more than compensated by the four that Stef scored on our way to ten for the day. However, playing on his ‘old’ Club handicap, Jake also put in a score of 42 points, so, if he does decide to make a comeback, the handicapper might have to take a close look at these numbers. The 18th BallPin was hard to get close to, and Porks put in an early claim. Adam had other ideas, and was able to get closer than 4m to collect the ball and to stake a claim for the ProShop trophy.
The Birthday Birdie is in a bit of a flutter this week, with well-wishes to go to Rod and SOS for their up-coming big days.
Results for Saturday, 09 April 2022
1st Stefan Belevski (42) 2nd Harry Boughen (40) 3rd Adam King (38) 4th Craig Cameron (36) 4th Chris Priems (36) 4th Ken Watson (36) 5th Bill Eastoe (35) 5th Trevor Jackson (35) 5th Mark Minney (35) 5th Brendon Mitchell (35) 5th Ryan Porker (35)
Priems Cup Results:
Stefan Belevski (TeamChris) d. Mark Minney (4 and 2)
Bill Eastoe (TeamChris) d. Brent Rowley (3 and 2)
Chris Priems (TeamChris) d. Rob Priems (3 and 1)
Ryan Porker (TeamChris) d. Geoff Lyall (2 and 1)
Harry Boughen (TeamRob) d. Trevor Jackson (3 and 2)
Adam King (TeamRob) d. Stan Blackshaw (7 and 5)
Craig Cameron (TeamRob) d. Stephen O’Sullivan (1 up)
Brendon Mitchell (TeamRob) d. Andrew Blight (5 and 3)
Ken Watson (TeamChris) d. Targe Mifsud (5 and 4)
TeamChris d. TeamRob 5 games to 4.
Nearest the Pin Results: ProPin – 15th Jake Priems BallPin No 1 – 4th – No Contest BallPin No 2 – 18th Adam King
We missed out on having to play on April Fool’s Day by the narrowest of margins, just like some of the putts that slipped by today. It was overcast and just a bit breezy when it got light enough to hit off, but take heart, we should have plenty of light for a few weeks from now on, provided that you remember to put your clocks back by an hour tonight. The ground staff were busy during the week aerating the greens (less disruptive and more effective than coring and sanding), but they still suffer from the multitude of unrepaired pitch marks. Maybe we should try to set an altruistic standard by taking on to repair a couple each on each green, regardless of whether we made one or not. If you are not sure how to, there is a link to a video on the web-site, in case you haven’t noticed. As has been the case in recent weeks, the number of registrations was a little disappointing, as we only managed to get 14 members to the line to compete for the April Monthly Medal.
It would be good to see a better turn-out in future, as the management are starting to make noises given the extra loading that they are seeing at the moment. Also, next week will be the first, much postponed, Priems Cup Event. This is a matchplay competition, with Chris and Rob selecting their teams and matches on Thursday after registrations close. So, could everybody register by the deadline (and show up) to avoid last minute hassles on Saturday. Championship points will be awarded as follows. To the winners of each match, three points. To the members of the winning team, two points, but in the event that the teams are tied, all players will get one point. Unmatched players will be assigned to the winning team and will get points accordingly. As well as the matchplay, there will be a Stableford event for the ball run and for handicapping, but there will be no winner’s penalty applied in the handicapping.
For some reason today, there seemed to have been an extraordinary number of balls lost, if you can believe the reports. Ryan reckons that for at least the first five holes, they spent more time looking for balls than playing them. It doesn’t seem that the comment applied to him, though, if the scores that he reported are any guide. Although the front nine probably was not what he would have called ‘great’, the back was just four over par, which brought him into the clubhouse with a net score of 71 to take out the Medal. This is where the ‘racking’ of brains started, as CJ reckoned that he could not remember anybody winning the medal with a higher score. A trawl through the records showed that CJ must have a very short memory, as it was only November 2015 since SOS collected a medal for the same score. And, there have been quite a number of others over the years. If you really want to know who has walked away with the ‘easiest’ medal ever, you would have to look at Laurie Mannix for the September Medal in 2000 when he took home the bacon with 76 net.
Craig was playing his usual (I dare not use the ‘b’ word) game straight down the middle, with only a couple of aberrations that could very well have cost him the top spot. Perhaps it was the thought of the three beers that he was owed after the second tee that distracted him momentarily. Rob had his draughtie on the first, while CJ and Geoff cancelled him out on the second. They weren’t alone, because they were joined by Targe and Stan in the very next group. And, if it hadn’t been for that little distraction, CJ also could have been jostling for the top spot as he tied up with Craig for second place with 72 net. Keith and Geoff did not have any stand-out bad holes, they just didn’t have enough good ones to turn the result into something better. As a result, they had to satisfy themselves with a share of third place with their 74.
Gordon thought that he had heard Michael say that he had a 73, which would have thrown a cat right among the pigeons if it had been correct. Not sure whether to blame Gordon’s hearing or Michael’s diction. One thing Gordon had plenty of today was hitting balls from adjacent to the trunks of trees, and the leafy blighters gave him strife in other ways on a number of occasions as well. And, what can you say about Brendon? A man who doesn’t want a ‘mansion’, just a house with four bedrooms, three bathrooms, study, movie room, triple garage etc, etc. Except, that he ‘struggled’ a bit today to finish tied up with Michael and Gordon in fourth place with a 75. Last Medal day, Harry had a 10 on the 3rd, and went on to win the Medal. Today, Harry had a 10 on the third, but history was not bound to repeat itself, and he could only scrape into fifth place with his 76, no thanks to an 8 on the 17th when his ball disappeared into the tree on the corner, and did not emerge as expected. He’s convinced it is still up there!
Despite the confusion caused by the marker for the ProPin 12th being left out on the 7th, the following results were declared, and no correspondence will be entered into. Stan managed to get his ball onto the 7th green by about a ball width, and took out the BallPin there. Perhaps that will be a minor consolation for the fact that he took four putts to sink his ball on the 5th, with all of them being less than half a metre, and three of them considerably less than that. The second BallPin on the 18th went to Gordon, who had to chase up the office staff to put out the inside ProPin marker, which meant that he got to put his name on that as well. Gordo didn’t get the birdie, which meant that we could only count two for the day. Our ProPin was contested on the 12th, and, although Gordon called Harry’s shot as closer, from the tee, perspective ruined the party and Michael took the dosh with his shot to 4.2m (approximate, independently confirmed).
There was one match contested today, with Michael coming up against Ken, and there was a fairly substantial number of strokes to be given by Michael at 26. Michael took an early lead and was soon two up, but Ken was not done with yet. Through the middle of the course, Mangoman got things rolling and pulled the match back to square and held it there until the 12th. Some more consistent shot making by Michael, and little slips by Ken when the two strokes were on offer marked a complete turn around in the match, and it went dormie 3 at the 15th. A win for Michael on the 16th closed out the match 4 and 2. No Matchplay next week due to Priems Cup, so that leaves four weeks after that to get the first round finished. If second rounders want to get their matches out of the way, they can, but it won’t be compulsory to play until 07 May.
Things have been a bit quiet for the Birthday Birdie over recent weeks, but there is cause for a big Turkish celebration this week as Mehmet turns over a new leaf (in his birthday book). Have a good one, habibi!
According to reports, the lost ball trophy was taken out by SOS, with a total of five. He also scored the most strokes per hole by knocking off Harry with an eleven on the 13th.
Results for Saturday, 02 April 2022
1st Ryan Porker (71) 2nd Craig Cameron (72) 2nd Chris Priems (72) 3rd Keith Delzoppo (74) 3rd Geoff Lyall (74) 4th Michael Gourlay (75) 4th Gordon Hill (75) 4th Brendon Mitchell (75) 5th Harry Boughen (76)
Seniors Results: 1st Chris Priems (72) 1st Craig Cameron (72) 2nd Geoff Lyall (74) 2nd Keith Delzoppo (74) 3rd Gordon Hill (75) 3rd Michael Gourlay (75)
Nearest the Pin Results: ProPin – 12th Michael Gourlay BallPin No 1 – 7th Stan Blackshaw BallPin No 2 – 18th Gordon Hill