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A Handicapper’s Delight on 18 February 2023

Blitzkrieg Targe
I think I’m in for a big cut!

The day started off a bit on the gloomy side with a fairly heavy overcast sky. But, after a while, things brightened up as the cloud dispersed, and it turned out to be a beautiful mild, windless day, perfect for golf. So perfect that twelve members, and no less than 4 prospects, turned out to face what Ivanhoe had to throw at them. So perfect that you had to play to your handicap to even score a point. The main downside to the day, however, was the fact that some young vandals had entered the course on motorbikes and had desecrated several greens. The third was the most severely struck, so much so that a temporary green had to be established. The general feeling was that a much better spot could have been chosen so that a putt had at least some chance of getting to and going into the hole, although Andrew, Matt and Peter did manage to score their par despite this little challenge. The general feeling also was that the green could be out of service for some time, so it is hoped that a better temporary green can be developed, or a local ‘two putt’ rule can be promulgated. And, of course, that the perpetrators are caught and get a well deserved kick in the pants!

There have been signs, in recent times, that Targie just might be getting some of his old MoJo back. When he finished the front nine with twenty-two points on the card, there were a few raised eyebrows and questions asked whether he could keep up the pace, or would a pack of Throaties be in order. Oh, ye of little faith! Not only did he keep it up, he actually improved and finished the back nine with another twenty-four points. The resulting forty-six points was more than enough to knock off any opposition by a fair margin and to take first place, eight points (of the Championship kind) and a hefty adjustment of his handicap.

Stan had hit the Clubhouse early and was thought to be sitting pretty with his card showing forty-one points. He was only one point adrift of Targe on the back nine, but a pair of triple bogies and a pair of doubles on the front nine provided enough of a short-fall not to be right up there with Targe. In a similar vein, Steve was probably ruing the presence of no less than three ‘fat ladies’ on his card that probably prevented him from being right up there alongside Stan. Still, you would have to be pleased with a score of thirty-nine on any day. Andrew definitely seems to be intent on getting his handicap down to a respectable level by appearing on the podium with a handicap breaking score two weeks in a row, tying with Steve in third place.

It’s hard to believe that it all of a year since we last saw Joe on the course. But, today, he was back with a vengeance, and was obviously out to prove that he hadn’t lost any of his touch (or that he has been practising on the sly). If he hadn’t taken most of the front nine to warm up, he, too, could have been much further up the pecking order after streaking home with twenty-three points on the back. In general, the back nine was the happy hunting ground for almost everyone. Ryan and Rob were no exceptions, and they too were able to come back from ‘ordinary’ front nines to share the spotlight on the fourth place podium. Adam, on the other hand, was very even-handed, reporting the same sore on both nines on his was to his fifth place score of thirty-six points. And, it seems, that he missed a lot of putts in getting there. For a while there, he was chewing his nails, wondering whether he would even get into the points despite playing right to his handicap.

Raj was able to get the closest to the pin on the 4th for the first BallPin. Not only did he not get the birdie, he didn’t even get the par. As a result, that win did not make a contribution to the seven birdies that were carded for the day. On the 18th, for the second BallPin, Porks was able to add to his ever-increasing collection. The ProPin was on the 15th today, and Adam was able to take home the money with his shot to 2.30m.

The four prospects today were James Hale, Josh, Hunt, Jonathan Lau, and John Dimpoulos (a mate of Joe’s). James, Josh and Jonathan all submitted their third card today, and they now have their nice new handicaps, and we will surely see them on the podium in the near future if past history is any guide. John has a couple of cards to go before he attains such exalted status. A big hearty welcome to all and we look forward to seeing you on the tee soon.

Craig was a bit perturbed by the appearance of a woman blithely wandering across the 9th fairway about 75m away while they were in the process of teeing off. It is unclear whether this experience contributed to his attack of the ‘shorts’ on the greens that prevented him from occupying one of his usual spots on the podium. Jonathan apparently produced a draughtie during the round, but claimed ‘diplomatic’ immunity since he was not a full-fledged member yet. All bets are off now, Jonathan! Josh did not score a par in his round today, mainly due to missing about four putts from 300mm (playing for handicap?). However, on the 18th, his putt from the top deck rolled to a stop at the top of the slope. Then, it started rolling again and dropped, ever so gently, into the hole for the birdie. Unfortunately, it doesn’t count in our tally, or for his ‘future’ Eclectic score. And, while on the topic of the Eclectic, Ryan has a comfortable lead and only four holes left to birdie (or better) with most of the year to go. And, while on the topic of Ryan, his drive on the 14th had Matt hiding behind his buggy as the ball flashed by after bouncing on the shiny new bitumen path alongside the 15th tee.

The Birthday Birdie has a week off this week, which should help in getting over his jet-lag.

Don’t forget to register if you want to be included in the Matchplay which is due to start from 4th March, with the random draw to be done next week.

Results for Saturday, 18 Feb 2023
1st Targe Mifsud (46) 2nd Stan Blackshaw (41) 3rd Steven Gervasoni (39) 3rd Andrew Noble (39) 4th Joe Demir (38) 4th Ryan Porker (38) 4th Robert Priems (38) 5th Adam King (36)

Seniors Results: 1st Targe Mifsud (46) 2nd Stan Blackshaw (41) 3rd Steven Gervasoni (39)

Nearest the Pin Results: ProPin – 15th Adam King BallPin No 1 – 4th Rajesh Mahto BallPin No 2 – 18th Ryan Porker