The day started with my dad and I picking up an ever-so-slightly hungover Matt Naylor. Not a day to be hungover when the residents of Formby had been without water all morning. Little did we know his day was only going downhill from there. He later informed me of his excitement about a rejuvenating sausage roll from the halfway house after seeing the one I had purchased in the group ahead of him. Only when he was salivating at the shop window did he realise mine was the last one. I assume this was a large contributing factor in the wooden spoon being claimed later in the day. Better luck next time Matt.
Before I started my round I was approached by Steve Clarke and asked if I would be willing to take on the role of vice-captain. I very happily accepted and now, with the backing and respect of my peers coursing through my veins, I bounced along to the first tee ready to take on whatever golf could throw at me. That was until I remembered I was playing my first-round match play against last year’s finalist Colin Davies.
My nerves were eased when Col hit his tee shot fifty yards right off the first tee allowing me to win the hole but like the great competitor he is he bounced straight back and won the second. He then out drove me on the third and I wondered whether it wasn’t going to be my day. Eight holes later I was dormie eight and I realised I was wrong. Sorry Col! He did win the next three holes and played great on the back nine before we halved the fourteenth to end a match played in great spirit.
In terms of my stableford performance I think my playing partners must have realised I was on a good score when I didn’t get a beer from the halfway house. Those who know me know there are not many situations in which I would turn down such an opportunity to quench my thirst but I wasn’t risking a wobbly back nine. I managed to keep up my level of play on the back nine and thankfully finished up on the winning score.
I thought the course was in great condition for the time of year and the greens ran very true. Although anything with grass was always going to be a vast improvement on last years frozen tundra. It was nice not having to try and judge golf balls bouncing forty yards in the air for a start.
Congratulations to our new captain Ste Davies who did a great job with the scores. I was particularly impressed with his ability to announce the correct winner given the previous incumbents propensity to get it wrong. Just joking John, I’ll be happy if I can be half the captain you were.
Thanks again to everyone who voted for me. It’s quite fitting that I am Ste’s vice-captain as he was the one who introduced me into the society. I look forward to taking him on (and beating him) at the Ryder Cup.
I hope everyone enjoyed the day and I will see you all at Runcorn.
After several missed turns due to Colin’s beliefs that he knows the way, the sat nav finally got us there at what felt like 3 a.m.
In the foursomes we started off a fantastic team, cool calm and calculated only to somehow end up with a double bogey on a par 3 and some idiot forgetting to mark the score card and following his own set of rules. As Les sank a slippery 20 footer on the last , frank was first to come with a finely laminated copy of the rules and disqualify us on the spot for assuming 4 of us wouldn’t miss from 3 inches. Frank would travel home with his pro vs in his pocket, congratulations frank.
After checking the forecast I was assured no rain was due, so it was rather fitting that it started after 1 hole. Steve Doran was determined it still wasn’t wet enough, and found the water 3 times on the 3rd hole.
John seemed determined to inform me he “hates golf” and Ste had given up even looking for his balls , the 3 people in my group averaged a cracking 20.6 points and set the bar very high.
It was a lovely course and I enjoyed beating josh by 16 points and Foode by 17. My second major presented to me in a car park when everyone had left felt phenomenal.
Thanks and congrats to our Captains Day winner, Simon Davies.
I had looked forward to playing Pleasington again as I had found it extremely pleasant the last time we played there…….but in the words of Mike Kirkland, it became rather Unpleasington as we left the second green.
Dan Foode, all hangover and topped shots at this stage, was suddenly chasing his bag and umbrella in the wind and rain whilst simultaneously trying to put his waterproof top on!! Perhaps this changed the mood as I was in full Victor Meldrew mode at this point. To be fair I was still moaning on the 10th tee when our Skipper looked at me and said “bloody hell Nello you’ve got 18 pts!!” The moaning did stop briefly on the Par 3 adjacent the river with the house and beautiful garden and summer house…….it only stopped to allow me to enquire if I could book a week’s holiday next June!!
Obviously I managed to hang on for the win, it’s been a while so very much enjoyed. Thanks to the Captain and Dan for the good company and putting up with my mutterings.
Hopefully we can all find it pleasant at Pleasington next year!
Fail to prepare and prepare to fail they say. Well, preparation for Knott End came on Friday afternoon at Ormskirk GC. Two topped tee shots off the first and two lost balls, same on the second and so it went on ! 5 points for the front 9 and the inevitable occurred (just for Simon) and I walked in after 11 holes with 8 points and 9 lost balls!! Physically and mentally drained I doubted I would be making the first tee today. After securing a buggy late yesterday I gave it a go with no expectations at all. This game baffles me at times as the Hadden mating call of “fore left” or “fore right” was only heard thanks to Daniel, Derek or Dave erring off the tee and not my normal golfing version of the Red Arrows!
It has been a while and some close shaves along the way, but really pleased to have “got it done” again and look forward to getting together for the weekend at the end of the month. Look after yourselves guys as we exit full lockdowns and see you all at Belton Woods. Special mentions for Col and Steve Dorian today with 37 points and what promised to be more, great scoring chaps!!
Oh and for anyone not within earshot Josh has said you may as well not bother turning up as he is 98% sure he will win the Club Championship!
If I had thought there was half a chance of me winning and writing this report, I might have paid more attention to what was going on!
Once again Preston offered a first class welcome, a cracking course and fine weather for a wander around the countryside. The mutterings from Campbell of ‘jammy git’ started on the the first hole and continued well into the evening presentation – hopefully he will have stopped by the time we get to Knott End. Thanks go the him, Nello and Zach for the company and I’m sure we will want to visit there again. Tough luck to Steve losing it on a count back; for some reason he seemed quite happy about it -eyes on Belton Woods perhaps.
After the competitors had heard that 6 of the society members had played Shaw Hill the weekend before, the murmurings and complaints started before some had even finished their bacon butties.
The groups got underway with Captain sailing one right down the middle of the fairway and coming to rest just short of the green. The concerns of the practice round the weekend before were swiftly put to rest when Zach stepped on to the tee next and smashed his 4 iron down the centre of the 4th fairway, a mere 200 yards left of target. It was purely a coincidence that 4 of 5 players tied for the lead had played the week before.
The course was in good condition with some very nice holes. I’ve got to thank Kev Wilson, Steve Doran and Mike Kirkland for a great round, even though Kev spent the back 9 trying to take out as many ducks as he could.
May Bank Holiday Sunday swinging sticks in sunny (not really) Wales – what more could you want. After hearing that Lee had decided to leave the society left us with sadness – an early drive to North Wales with our newest member, Matt Naylor was a good start to the day. Welcome young Naylor – I’m sure you’ll be called a bandit soon.
The first tee had a few members discussing who would be the first to duff it into the ditch or into the deep rough down the left side. Mike Bower did his best with his flop shot with a hybrid that went just over the ditch and rough.. Being the penultimate group to enter the fray, I was looking forward to a good round of golf and a laugh with Col, Derek and Wadders – and it was. A couple of highlights of the group were Col duffing a chip straight into a ditch before the green then proceeding to play the exact same shot moments later. Derek about to tee off on the Par 3 17th before two pedestrians walked along the path across the fairway – Derek saying jokingly “I’ll try and hit them” and then nearly did with a near shank shot. Wadders is quite fond of the sand and went in nearly every bunker possible. Then managing to hit his ball into the face of the bunker which spun out and landed straight into the ditch. I, overall played my best ever round of golf and managed to score 45 points which I couldn’t be happier about. Everything just went well today and after a few years of playing since my last monthly win – today was the day.
The fairways and greens ran nice and quick which was advantageous if you like to run the ball low. The course was in decent condition and was a nice challenging course all round.
A mention to Dave Hadden who played a great game today shooting 44 points but unfortunately didn’t win. Sorry Dave! But 44 is a fantastic score non the less.
Thank you gents for a great day as always and I’ll see you at the next event at Shaw Hill.
Well I for one was ecstatic to back out on the course having last played with the society at Captains Day back in September. I had managed to play a staggering 6 rounds in the 3 weeks since lockdown eased (record for me), and being buoyed by a previous win at Tytherington (back in July 2015) I had a feeling of cautious optimism. Preparation though didn’t go particularly well, by the time I’d thrown a coffee down me and finished my bacon barm it was already 11:45am which, being in the first group, meant only 15mins to get ready. Having hit a couple of putts on the practice green I was ushered to the first tee and proceeded to slice my opening 5 iron into the rough a mere 250yds from the green! After some good scrambling I got away with a bogey which was a theme for the rest of the day. I was in the company of the ever consistent Mike Bower and the mercurial John Aylward, the latter got off to an absolute flyer and was 4 under his handicap (18 points with two gross birdies) by the 7th hole, myself and Mike desperately trying to keep pace. As we reached the 15th tee, without having produced any real fireworks, i had taken the initiative and had a slender 1 shot lead. At this point we were tussling for what we both thought was going to be a 3rd or 4th place finish but we spurred each other on and finished solidly, Mike trailing and looking somewhat battered and bruised by the course.
The fairways were a little patchy leading to some questionable lies, and the greens were a little slower than they looked (which i didn’t mind) but in general the course was in decent nick. I hadn’t really noticed but there was a lot of elevation on the course which may have had an impact on a few members, I think we’ll see a few more buggies if we play here again in the near future.
As the winner was announced I rather embarrassingly corrected the Captain who had called out Dave Hadden (to the crowds delight), unfortunately it was me who had prevailed on a countback (17 to 16) which was made worse by the fact that no-one had beat my long drive or NP2, the silence was deafening. It was my first win in almost 2 years (June 2019) so i was quietly pleased with myself, even if no-one else was.