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In the Hunt? ‘Ken oath! on 16 September 2023

Ken creamed it
The handicap works if you stay on the fairway!

Could it have been the loot on offer that brought out the masses today? The choice of footy matches is starting to get a bit thin on the ground, although a couple of Hunts and a Priems had to dash off to a local Grand Final, but not until after they had savoured the shout that Josh had to make after he failed to make it to the red markers on the second (and the tee wasn’t even back on the wall!). With fourteen others making up the field, seventeen members (plus one) was as good a number as we have seen for a little while. The course has pretty well dried out, although the ground staff have been doing their best to maintain the mud by giving the sprinklers a right royal work-out. This was particularly noticeable around and on the greens, with some of the early starters having to take relief from the casual water that persisted on a couple of them. The first third of the 14th is still pretty soft, and a high launched ball was perfectly able to bury itself well below the full depth of the ball, necessitating the use of a prise to extricate it. Just ask Harry! On the other hand, some of the tee boxes were pretty hard, although it wasn’t yet in hammer territory. The weather was fine and warm, which prompted a few (tongue in cheek) comments about the severity of the heat and humidity. Some of the roughs were a bit furry, which could make it difficult to spot the ball until you were right upon it.

Captain's choice
Couldn’t miss out on the lad buying!

As well as finishing off his free beer, Matt was very keen to make sure that his card was submitted and was not left to blow away in the breeze or get stolen by a passing raven. He was also very keen to point out the number of scores that were circled on his card. Not because he thought they were all going to count for his eclectic, but because there were five birdies, which represented a fair proportion of the 12 that we managed to score for the day, This certainly helped to produce the total of 72 strokes off the stick, and a plus two of what counted. The score might well have been better after he knocked away a putt on the 12th, that he deemed to be bound to miss, just as it started to turn sharply towards the hole. Despite his fears about keeping the lead, this total was not beaten, but it was equalled. Ken indicated that he managed to keep the ball on the fairway today, and that helped immeasurably with the opportunities for scoring. In fact, there were only three minus results on the card. It seems that he did get some help in staying on the straight and narrow. The drive on the 16th was deemed to be headed for the children’s playground, but, in what was deemed to be an interminably long time, the ball was miraculously ejected back onto the fairway. Presumably the golf gods and not a passerby!

In second place, we find none other than Prez, aka Rob. It seems that Rob might have been taking some hints from the Magpies. In the first half, he was missing shots at goal from 3m out right in front of the posts. But, at half-time, the coach obviously said all of the right things, and a three point deficit was turned completely around onto a one point surplus, and he snagged second place with a well-placed putt for plus right on the siren. The five players, who tied it up for third place with square cards, all had options to have done better. Harry took five holes to warm up and score a non-negative result, and, later, a couple of ill-founded club selections probably cost as well. Michael was particularly rueful about having made it to the 13th green, about 4.5m from the pin, then taking four putts to finish it off. There was a suggestion that Josh had some ‘trouble’ with trees, but the result usually ended up favourable. He’s been taking lessons from the Priems boys, it seems. Raj played a very even round, but he was heard to mutter under his breath a few times, when his usual impeccable chipping did not quite come off. SOS was pretty pleased with himself as he strolled from the 9th green to the 10th tee. With three points on the positive side of the ledger, there was a thought that he might be in with a chance. Not to be, and he had to settle for a square card as well.

ChrisJ was moderately pleased with how he was going as he completed the front nine. Unfortunately, things turned a bit ugly on the back, and six gashes turned his plus 2 into a minus 2, which left him in fourth place. However, he was not alone. Brendon reckons his round was a feat of endurance after he ‘went in the hocks’ at some stage, and had to ‘limp’ his way home. Nothing went particularly right for Porks, nor did it go particularly wrong, so he was pretty happy to get his share of fourth spot. Peter has been away doing ‘other things’ for a while, so maybe he was feeling a little rusty on it. After putting his second into the penalty area on the 13th, and faced with a shot over the trees to the green from the penalty, he opted to pick up for the sake of speed of play (and his own sanity, perhaps). For some reason, this seemed to upset Michael. Stan didn’t quite celebrate his 100th game with us in style, but he was able to get a point with his score of minus 3 for fifth place. Steve seemed particularly upset because he lost his ‘favourite’ ball from the 14th tee. It was deemed to have been somewhere on the 16th fairway, but it could not be found, leading Steve to declare that some ‘Hunt’ must have picked it up. CJ is the proud owner of a new set of wheels, and he was bragging about how it couldn’t be capsized because of the four wheels. What did he do but capsize the darn thing as he headed off down from the first tee. Before the round, he was getting all sorts of operating instruction, even from that well known expert, Bobbie.

There were Jackpots galore on offer today. The BallPin on the 4th continued to look to be difficult, with the sun shining right in the eyes and making ball spotting less than easy. SOS didn’t need to worry, because his ball finished on the green, and it was close enough to beat any other contenders, and he awarded himself the two balls on offer. Not sure what he plans to do with them, as he reckons he never plays with new balls because he loses them. The balls on the 18th went to Matt, who claimed that he thought he had scored a HIO, and it was easy to see why with the marker less than half a metre past the hole. Matt was almost on a bit of a roll with his name on the card for the ProPin on the 15th showing a shot to 3.7m. Unfortunately, that was not close enough, and Ken’s shot to 2.95m won him enough shrapnel to shout the better half to dinner. Not sure what Ken is going to eat, though.

Charlie joined us again today to put in his second card, and the comments suggest that there is some talent there, except for a bit of a slice, and a tendency to flirt with the ladies. CJ and Adam were fairly hanging out to wrap themselves around a cold and frothy, but to no avail. Maybe it was the incipient thirst, but Adam started out going gang-busters and after six holes, he was three up. But then the con-rod threw a big-end that knocked a hole in the sump. CJ reckons that his buggy was losing traction, there was so much Valvoline spread around the course. Courtesy dictates that we don’t reveal the final score. We all know that Bob is pretty tough on himself. On the 15th tee, he managed to hit the big ball at least 300mm behind the little ball, and the club passed over without making contact. When tallying his score, he started counting at three because – isn’t there a penalty for an air-swing? Only to your ego, Bob! Brendon, despite his injury, went close to a slam-dunk shot on the 16th, although it wasn’t specified how many for. A par suggests either a missed putt, or it was only for a birdie.

Finally, a big shout-out from the Birthday Birdie to Allan Davies and Dale Webb who both have reason to get out and party this week. Have a good one, guys!

Results for Saturday, 16 Sep 2023
1st Matt Hunt (+2) 1st Ken Watson (+2) 2nd Robert Priems (+1) 3rd Harry Boughen (□) 3rd Michael Gourlay (□) 3rd Josh Hunt (□) 3rd Rajesh Mahto (□) 3rd Stephen O’Sullivan (□) 4th Chris James (-2) 4th Brendon Mitchell (-2) 4th Ryan Porker (-2) 4th Peter Sein (-2) 5th Stan Blackshaw (-3) 5th Steven Gervasoni (-3) 5th Chris Priems (-3)

Seniors Results: 1st Ken Watson (+2) 2nd Harry Boughen (□) 2nd Michael Gourlay (□) 3rd Peter Sein (-2)

Nearest the Pin Results: ProPin – 15th Ken Watson BallPin No 1 – 4th Stephen O’Sullivan BallPin No 2 – 18th Matt Hunt