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A win is a win on 25 March 2023.

Remember Stuart
I’ve been wanting to win this!

What a lovely day for golf, and wearing an Hawaiian shirt! The temperature probably wasn’t exactly Hawaiian to start with, but it did warm up enough for the layers to be removed later in the morning. There were eighteen members out on the course to start with, but JQ found something more important to do after the 13th and had to dash off. The numbers were bolstered by several who didn’t play last week, partly offsetting those who couldn’t make it to complete the event. Keith made it for the lunch afterwards, and we look forward to him being able to make it onto the tees once more. Rodger turned up a bit late after loitering a little too long over his paper while scoffing a Big Mac, and then was further delayed by a traffic jam, outside a church, of all places. A bit of swift rearrangement by the Tee Marshal soon had things in order.

Zimmer headed out with a steely look in his eye and made little in the way of mistakes to play right to his handicap for 36 points, which, when added to his first round tally of 38 gave him a grand total of seventy-four points. This was the best total for the event, but, unfortunately, the Comeback Kid did not start his comeback early enough, and he was not qualified to win the trophy.

Porks headed out with some hope in his heart, but the efforts with the driver on the first two holes did not do much to inspire, but he was able to recover enough to post 15 points on the front. He found his MoJo on the back and took one more stroke than par to bring the total points for the day to 35, and for the event to 71. CJ went close to chipping in a couple of times, and, on three occasions, he left putts within millimetres of the hole. He reckoned that those putts probably cost him the trophy. And, he was probably right, because he finished all tied up with Ryan, and the trophy was determined by a countback on the back nine, which Ryan won 20 points to 19.

After his sterling effort last week, Andrew had a bit of trouble getting a run of scoring today. Although there were twelve scores of two or better, the pair of gashes on the back did not help the cause at all. The one on the 17th was quite a doozie. There were a few eyebrows raised when Andrew and Zimmer were spotted walking across the 18th from the west. It is reckoned that the ball was actually hit by the shaft of the club, and it headed far right, over the safety fence and across the practice green. Certainly not the sort of shot that you see very often. Despite this, the total of sixty-nine was enough to make a reasonably respectable third place.

Stef played a well-balanced game today and made 38 strokes on both nines. As usual, his big hitting threatened the greens on most holes, and the 11th was no exception, where the ball finished almost pin high. The thirty-three points that were produced brought his total for the event to 67 which scored a share of fourth place. Geoff had a pretty rough trot on the front nine and managed to find a fair number of trees that did not help the scoring very much at all. However, he really knuckled down on the back nine and barely missed a beat to produce 20 points for a share of the fourth place with Stef. Raj made one of the better rounds of the day, which helped from being out of the placings last week to just into the placings in fifth place overall. As for the rest, better luck next time!

The Double Jackpot BallPin on the 4th went very close to being a Triple as group after group passed through to no avail. However, Porks did manage to get his ball onto the green, although only just by about the diameter of a ball, and thus he was able to collect the three balls on offer. The second BallPin on the 18th went to Andrew, who obviously had a better tee shot than he did on the 17th. He didn’t have to get particularly close as he only had Harry, who was ever hopeful with his shot sitting at around 11.6m, to beat. The ProPin was on the 15th, and the money went to Stef, and we have to take his word as to the distance because the kit is in his car. There will be guts for garters if he doesn’t show up next week. The crazy thing is, he reported a four on the hole, so it was his other birdies that contributed to the eight that we managed for the day.

SOS finished with a not too spectacular score, but, it seems that his tee shot on the 17th was something to behold as it soared across the trees and was deemed by all and sundry to be on the green for sure. Despite a diligent search, it was nowhere to be found. Targe went close to finding himself in a tricky spot when his drive from the 16th headed right and hit a nearby tree right on a crack in the bark/trunk. The ball hesitated for a moment before falling to the ground right at the base of the tree. Bob had his usual tales of hard luck, but on the 14th green he had a longish putt and called the result to sink it. CJ also had a moderately long curling putt on the same hole, and he read it to perfection as it curled around and dropped ever so gently into the hole for the birdie. He wasn’t too happy about his four on the 15th, and deemed it to be a PBSU.

Don’t forget, we have the AGM after the round next week. There are still a couple of Committee positions that have not been nominated for, and any and all are up for challenge if you so have a mind. We would prefer to have nominations before the meeting, but they will be accepted from the floor. Details have been circulated by Craig, so check your email.

Results for Saturday, 25 Mar 2023
1st Kazim Akdag (38, 36, 74) 2nd Ryan Porker (36, 35, 71) 2nd Chris Priems (35, 36, 71) 3rd Andrew Noble (39, 30, 69) 4th Stefan Belevski (34, 33, 67) 4th Geoff Lyall (36, 31, 67) 5th Rajesh Mahto (31, 35, 66)

Seniors Results: 1st Chris Priems (35,36,71) 2nd Geoff Lyall (36,31,67) 3rd Harry Boughen (34,28,62)

Nearest the Pin Results: ProPin – 15th Stefan Belevski BallPin No 1 – 4th Ryan Porker BallPin No 2 – 18th Andrew Noble

Driver, take me home! on 18 March 2023

Can he win from here?
May the best qualifier win….

It’s that time of year again. The nights are getting a bit cooler, and the first group is hitting off into what can best be described as the half-light. The ravens are desperate to raid the odd unattended golf bag, and the magpies are chortling their little hearts out. But it is only Round 1, so maybe they shouldn’t get too excited. Anyhow, back to the weather. We were promised a scorcher with strong northerlies, but, thankfully, neither eventuated to any significant degree before we finished the round. As a result, the twenty members who turned out to get their foot in the door for a chance to win the Stuart Clarke Memorial Trophy were faced with a pretty nice day for a round of golf. And, there was some pretty nice golf played (or has the handicapper been too easy on some people?).

At the head of the pack cluttering the Leaderboard, is one of the new kids on the block. In only a handful of rounds since qualifying for his Club handicap, he has appeared on the podium on pretty much every occasion. He is well-placed as the leading Qualifier, to feature once again with his tally of thirty-nine points for the first round. His front nine had a sort of symmetry about it with seven fours and two sevens, which still managed to get him twenty points at the turn. The back nine was not quite so consistent, but a pair of birdies to finish off the round helped immeasurably to swing the leading score. His shot on the 18th was more than good enough to win him the ball for the second BallPin, and the two birdies helped us to a pretty impressive nineteen for the day.

However, Andrew does not have it on his own at the head of the leaderboard. JQ has apparently dipped into the family fortune and bought himself a new driver. The precise specification has not been revealed, but there was a thought that it might have emulated a helicopter after its performance on the first tee. The ball went close to taking out JQ’s kneecap as it headed sharp left and finished about 5m away, buried deep in the shrubbery and didn’t bear searching for. Like a true trooper, John persisted, and the investment began to pay dividends. A healthy enough eighteen points on the front was followed up by a very impressive twenty-one on the back to put him right up with a red-hot chance of the points, if not the trophy.

It doesn’t seem that long ago that we were coaching Zimmer on how to shave. Now he has a beard and is complaining how his ‘ageing’ body is letting him down, at least as far as playing soccer is concerned. So, soccer’s loss would seem to be golf’s gain, with Zimmer’s come-back round showing that he has not lost much in the way of form despite the aches and pains. His thirty-eight points will stand him in good stead for starting his points accumulation. A couple of points back, the Board starts to get a bit congested, and there could easily be a couple of hopeful Bradburys among the rest of the field. Geoff had his moments today, but somehow he managed to keep scoring points to come home with thirty-six of them. There was a suggestion that he should be called Mr 90% after barrelling shots through trees and managing to miss the 10% of solid timber. Pepsi wasn’t going to come, then decided he would. But, despite some ups and downs in form as the round progressed, he too managed to play to his handicap. He was thinking of not playing next week, but now he thinks he might, because he can sniff a chance for some silver-ware. Porks played his usual well-balanced round of eighteen points each half, and he could only manage just the one birdie today. Only three holes to go, and he will have birdied the course in the Eclectic. Can he do it?

If good things come in threes, then the group in fourth place must also be a good thing. Just a point further back on thirty-five, there would also be some hope beating in the chests of Anthony, Josh and CJ that they will be able to hoist some major points, if not the trophy itself. And, perhaps the last with any real hope of stealing the show, with thirty-four points is the happy quartet of Stef, Harry, Sean and Adam. Game on!

The first BallPin was a jackpot on the 4th, and the rear placement of the tees seems to have played into the hands of the ball burglars, and there will be a double Jackpot on the hole next week. The ProPin was on the 12th, and Harry’s playing partners had pretty much gifted him the money after his shot to 1.2m. However, JQ was jumping up and down in the belief that he had scored a hole-in-one when his rolled towards the hole to finish just 0.9 m short, right in line.

Three matches played out today, and there was some disappointment expressed that there were no chip-offs to entertain the masses. In fact, some of the results were about as far from a chip-off as you could get (almost). Zimmer was up against SOS, and, fairly obviously, Zimmer had a pretty good round. SOS freely admitted that he played like a dog and could not take a trick, let alone a hole. In what was almost a one-way street, the match went dormie six after the 12th and the match finished on the next hole, Zimmer winning 7 and 5. Pepsi was taking on Bob. Pepsi had a reasonable sort of day, and Bob had one of his usuals. The buggy didn’t actually break down, but it was playing up, so he shared the cart with Rodger for the back nine. The match looked like being evenly balanced for a while, but, after the fifth hole there was a pretty steady progression of scores Pepsi’s way, and the match finished after the 13th, 6 and 5 to Pepsi. Then there was Stef and Raj. Stef took an early lead, but Raj hung in there and wouldn’t let him get too far in front so that a three hole deficit at the turn seemed as if it could be turned around. Unfortunately, like King Canute, Raj wasn’t able to turn the tide, and, after the match went dormie 4 after the 14th, it seemed only a matter of time before the match went to Stef 4 and 2 at the 16th.

Ben was here today as well (one day we might see all of the acca-daccas here at once) and he did not make it to the red markers on the 2nd tee. In actual fact, his ball actually went backwards after he topped it very severely. Geoff also scored a draughtie on the 12th, although his ball did actually travel forwards. Pepsi was saved by a tree on the 16th where his ball was heading for the lake, but it was fortuitously deflected to finish well placed in the fairway. Harry left a few putts teetering on the edge of the hole today. One, in particular, was on the 9th so he went to give it a nudge to drop it in. Unfortunately, the nudge moved the ball, but not enough to drop it in. Sean, who played his first round with us today, was moved to comment that he would have thrown the ball much further than Harry did. Steve was quite unable to find anything good to report about his round today.

Next week will be the decider to see who hoists the trophy, and it is traditional for members to wear a suitably loud Hawaiian shirt to mark the memory of Stuart. There will be a barbecue lunch after, and all members are welcome whether you play one round, both rounds or none at all. We just ask that, if you will be there for the nosh, just let us know so that the catering can be adequate.

Results for Saturday, 18 Mar 2023
Leaderboard Round 1: 1st Andrew Noble (39) 1st John Quinlan (39) 2nd Kazim Akdag (38) 3rd Geoff Lyall (36) 3rd Andrew Petricola (36) 3rd Ryan Porker (36) 4th Anthony Browne (35) 4th Josh Hunt (35) 4th Chris Priems (35) 5th Stefan Belevski (34) 5th Harry Boughen (34) 5th Sean Farrell (34) 5th Adam King (34)

Seniors Leaderboard: 1st Geoff Lyall (36) 2nd Chris Priems (35) 3rd Harry Boughen (34) 3rd Sean Farrell (34)

Nearest the Pin Results: ProPin – 12th John Quinlan BallPin No 1 – 4th Jackpot BallPin No 2 – 18th Andrew Noble

Haven’t played – honest! on 11 March 2023

Geoff cleans up.
Only happens once in a blue moon!

What’s a long weekend? some members (of a certain age) were asking. This seemed to be the reason being bandied around for the drop off in numbers from the last couple of weeks. The weather certainly could not be blamed, other than it was too good not to take the missus and kids to the beach. But, we did manage to scare up fourteen members to hit the tees for a Stableford round. Could have been fifteen, but we can only speculate as to what turn of events kept Stef away after he desperately appealed to be included in a group after the tee marshal had sent out the list on Thursday. There was a bit of coolth in the air early on, and the greens held onto their coating of dew until well into the round. But, it did warm up enough for the old hydration to need a top-up to keep the engine ticking over at a nice, steady pace.

It wasn’t revealed whether he had kept the hydration up, but he certainly kept the engine ticking over at a nice, steady pace. The first couple of holes were described as average, but then he just missed raiding the Eagle’s nest on the 3rd, leaving himself with a 25mm putt for a birdie and four points. There were a couple of little wobbles later in the round, but, by and large, the points just kept rolling in with yet another birdie on the 18th, and the 4 points clicked the odometer to 22 on the back and to 40 for the whole round. That could have been enough to win the day by a clear margin. But, not today!

Just a single point behind, and without a four pointer on his card, was none other than Captain Matt. Could he have made up the deficit? Yes, he could, if three single point holes are any guide. Perhaps he can blame Brendon. It seems that Brendon’s drive on the 2nd went missing, so he decided to take the two stroke penalty and play another ball. Not sure exactly what happened, but he managed to get Matt on the leg, just below the knee, at which point he gave up on the hole and carded a gash for his trouble. Matt limped on and tried to forgive him, as this was one of the holes that was a singleton for him.

SOS was a man on a mission today, to get into the first group and to get away from the course as early as possible. He obviously didn’t have time to think too much about his game, and, as a result, he seems to have put together a pretty reasonable round. If it hadn’t been for one blot and a few singletons, he could easily have been top dog. Harry is one of the more ‘senior’ members of the club, and today he seems to have had a bit of a senior moment, confidently asserting that his Club handicap was 17. It was actually 15, so instead of the 37 points on his card, the total was really only 35. He still came 4th though. It was just that he now shares the podium with Josh (first points) and Rob, who were promoted from 5th. That then let Stan sneak into 5th place to collect a point with his 34 points.

The Nearest the Pin competitions today definitely had their moments. The first BallPin was set for the 4th where, admittedly, the tee markers were set well back. The trees and the OOB did claim a few victims, but the upshot was that nobody was able to get their ball onto the green, so there will be a jackpot to be had next week. The second BallPin on the 18th had its moments as well. The pin was on the lower level and Harry finished well to the back of the top level. There was no marker out and no name yet on the inside comp, so out came the tape, and the measure was nearly 19m. Nothing ventured, nothing gained, so in went the marker and on went the name. Thing was, the tape measure did not like being withdrawn to its full length, and, despite best efforts, it could not be persuaded to return to its case. Geoff then announced that he had been much closer, but forgot to put out the marker etc. Brendon then came along and whacked his drive much closer again, so it had all been for naught. And, while on the topic of Brendon, the Double jackpot on the 15th looked to be in danger of not being taken out. That is, until the ProPin burglar made it to 3.46m and collected the dosh again. Matt claimed that he had exercised Captain’s prerogative and had declared it a shared pot, but that didn’t seem to cut any mustard with Brendon.

There were a couple of matches decided today. First off, we had Mehm up against ChrisJ. And, what a battle it turned out to be. The game ebbed and flowed for pretty much the whole round, with neither able to put a clear stamp on the game. First Chris was up by one, then Mehm, then Chris, then Mehm. Finally, Mehm got a slight break and the match was dormie 2 after the 16th. Chris had to win the next two to square the match. His win at the 17th kept the match dormie. Unfortunately for him, he could only halve the hole on the last, and Mehm won the match one up. In the other match, Stan was up against Geoff. Now you would think, that with the differences in competition scores, that Geoff would have had it easy. Which just goes to show how different matches can be. Contrary to what you might think, Stan did hold the majority of the lead, but he was never able to get more than two holes ahead of Geoff. Once again, the match went dormie 2 after the 16th. Geoff was able to win both, which brought the match to all square and that required a chip-off. When everybody had assembled, let the contest begin! The first two chips proved a bit deceiving as far as pace went, and both had longish putts that required two putts apiece. The second chips were better judged, but the putting fared no better from the shorter distance. The third chips were to the close hole. Both didn’t make it to the green and both resorted to using putter for the second shot. Geoff went a bit longer and required two to finish off, but Stan the man only needed the one to take the match on the third.

Rob’s drive on the 17th was not all that great and finished near the path at the bottom of the hill, and not too far from one of the stakes marking something or other. There was a fair amount of trash talk about where he should put the stake and that it was too far for him to reach the green etc etc. This really got Prez’s dander up, and he played a cracker of a shot that finished just off the green about pin high. His shot in finished just short of the hole. The unlikely birdie would have increased our tally of seven for the day, but he had to settle for his par. Josh showed a bit of his potential today on the way to his first points, but he did have the narrowest of escapes on the 7th where his drive finished bare millimetres in front of the red markers, and he was let off on the 18th where it wasn’t possible to determine the position of his ball in the middle of the pond in relation to the reds. There was apparently little doubt about Mehm’s shot on the 5th, where his drive finished in the middle of the drainage works just in front of the tee box. Blighty also did not make it to the reds from the back of the 15th top tee box.

Next week is the first round of the Stuart Clarke Memorial, and it would be nice to get a good turn-out to remember Stuart and his contribution to the Club. For our newer members, it is traditional to wear a ‘loud’ Hawaiian type shirt for the second round, as Stuart was wont to do when he played. Op shops and Savers are probably the place to look if you don’t happen to have one lying around. There will also be a barbeque after the second round (25th March). As the next three weeks are the ProShop Strokeplay Championship, we will be playing from the white tees so that those members who wish to can take part in that event.

Results for Saturday, 11 Mar 2023
1st Geoff Lyall (40) 2nd Matt Hunt (39) 3rd Stephen O’Sullivan (38) 4th Harry Boughen (35) 4th Josh Hunt (35) 4th Robert Priems (35) 5th Stan Blackshaw (34)

Seniors Results: 1st Geoff Lyall (40) 2nd Harry Boughen (35) 3rd Stan Blackshaw (34)

Nearest the Pin Results: ProPin – 15th Brendon Mitchell BallPin No 1 – 4th Jackpot BallPin No 2 – 18th Brendon Mitchell

Lightning strikes twice on 04 March 2023.

The royal purple
My name is Ozymandias…..

It was another lovely day at the office! The sun was shining, the birds were singing, and the whole world was happy – except for us and the ladies behind after a late start occasioned by several groups teeing off before us. And there is still another month of daylight saving to go. However, twenty-one members and two guests (John Dimopoulos and Tony Fazzolari) put all that behind them and set out to tackle the worst that Ivanhoe could throw at us. Actually, the course itself was pretty benign, it was the casual players picking up or playing balls that should have been left for somebody else that caused some problems. There were a few complaints about the pace of the greens being hard to gauge, but isn’t that always the case when you leave it too short or hit it too long! Strange that there are never any complaints when the ball goes in! The temperature did get up a bit before the round finished, and just a gentle reminder that a good supply of water and regular intakes helps immeasurably in maintaining concentration as the day progresses. We would hate to have anyone suffering from dehydration and/or heat stroke and requiring medical assistance.

There was a certain amount of email chat during the week that included the following line – “On your new handicap, the same score next week will be about net 62, so good luck repeating that effort!”. This was obviously akin to a red rag for a bull. Like a man on a mission to get the round finished and to get himself to Geelong in a hurry, Gordo absolutely blitzed the course again and rocked up with a 73 off the stick and a net of 61 to take out the March Monthly Medal. In the process, his handicap has taken another whacking. Gordo was also taking on Rob in their first round match, and so Rob was trying his hand at ‘trash-talking’ to try to gain some sort of advantage. Unfortunately, this had the opposite effect and Gordo finished off the match at the 15th by chipping in for a birdie from about 15m out to take the match 4 and 3, and just about broke Rob’s heart in the process.

Matt tried to make it easy for the handicapper today by attempting to fill his card with the one number, to whit, 4. He started off with five in a row, and finished off with six in a row, and a few more made a total of fourteen altogether. His front nine ended up only two over par, and the whole round just six over, leaving him with a net score of 65 for his award of second place. This gave him an early advantage over Bill in their match, and he was never headed, although Bill did make a bit of a comeback to make the score dormie 2 after the sixteenth. A pair of pars on the 17th gave the match to Matt 2 and 1 which he saw as revenge for his defeat last year at the hands of the same opponent. The luck of the draw, eh!

Things are a bit quiet on the fruit front at the moment, with the mango season in its final days. It’s not clear whether Ken has been able to use this respite to work on his game, but he was obviously more relaxed today and was able to snare third place with just a little bit of a break of the old handicap. BIll was standing around this morning wondering which group he was in, when he was informed by CJ that he was in the next group and playing Matt in their match. Despite the thing that they say is bliss, the Beast was able to put together a reasonable round to get fourth place with his net score of 67.

Stan was examining his driver on the first tee and commenting that, although it was adjustable, it had never been adjusted, and he had no idea how they were supposed to work. This might very well be a good thing, because, despite a couple of ‘fat ladies’ he put together a handicap equalling round to grab a piece of fifth place. He was joined by Brendon who really only blotted his copy-book on one hole on the front, and was only 2 over the card on the back to finish right on handicap as well. It’s a tough school when you have to play to your handicap to score a point!

The first BallPin today was on the 12th, and Rob sealed the deal early on with a shot to a metre or so from the pin. The BallPin on the 18th fell to Josh, who lined up for his first competition today after qualifying for his handicap. This might compensate slightly for the 3rd hole, where his drive trickled about 3 metres to finish well short of the reds. This was followed by an air-swing and an OOB, only to be told by Dad that he had to finish the hole as it was a stroke event. To rub salt into the wounds, Matt wanted Josh to repay him a ball for the one he lost, and this after Josh had paid Matt’s comp fee. Nothing like tough love! Anyway, the ProPin was a Jackpot, and, once again, nobody was able to get it close enough to the pin, so there will be a Double Jackpot up for grabs next week.

There were two more matches fought out today. Craig and SteveG looked as if they were going to be pretty evenly matched through the first nine as the lead ebbed and flowed. By the 12th, things were starting to look a bit dire for Old Reliable, until a couple of wins brought the match to dormie 3 after the 15th. The need to keep winning proved to be a road too far, and a pair of pars on the 17th handed the match to Steve 3 and 1. Harry and Jonathan squared the first four holes. Then Jonathan put on a burst and won the next five holes. When H commented on the need to review Jon’s handicap, Stan said – there’s always the back nine! Pars on the 10th and 11th raised the spirits, and the tee shot on the 12th was not quite as close as Rob’s. Bobbie’s was a little further out, and he sneaked his in for a birdie. Pointing out to his ball that this was the way to do it, H also slotted his to bring the score back to a much more palatable 2 down. These two birdies, by the way, brought the total for the day to 10. Three halves threatened the dreaded dormie match, but a fortuitous ‘fade-out’ by Jon handed Harry the match on the last hole, 1 up.

Bob had his usual share of moments during the round. Putts that just missed and sat on the edge of the cup, putts that rattled in from off the green, fairway shot that hit a branch and whistled back about thirty meters behind where he stood. The save of the day had to have been on the 7th where he was ‘saved by the gong’ figuratively speaking. His drive speared off left, heading for who knows where, and likely not to get past the reds, save for the tombstone and a piece of metal leaning against it that deflected the ball with a resounding clang and allowed it to scamper past the relevant markers. Brendon sprayed his drive on the second a bit, and a bit of a search ensued. ChrisJ, on being told that Brendon’s ball was marked with BM, declared that the one that he had found wasn’t it because it was marked WB. Maybe the ball was upside down or Chris is a bit cock-eyed already in preparation for his birthday in a few days time. Keep your eye out for the Birthday Birdie.

The barbeque after the round was much appreciated by all, as evidenced by the fact that there was not a lot left for taking home for the ‘dog’. It’s a fair bet there are cold snags and burgers on the table at somebody’s house tonight! For those that had to dash off, maybe next time you will be able to stay for a bite to eat and a bit of frivolity.

Results for Saturday, 04 Mar 2023
1st Gordon Hill (61) 2nd Matt Hunt (65) 3rd Ken Watson (66) 4th Bill Eastoe (67) 5th Stan Blackshaw (68) 5th Brendon Mitchell (68)

Seniors Results: 1st Gordon Hill (61) 2nd Ken Watson (66) 3rd Bill Eastoe (67)

Nearest the Pin Results: ProPin – 15th Jackpot BallPin No 1 – 12th Robert Priems BallPin No 2 – 18th Josh Hunt