The Pairs Cup @ Wilmslow GC, Thursday,26th October 2017 Report
The Pairs goes Posh
A change of venue for the pairs this year Wilmslow no less. We have played here before for the AGM but returned to Stockport out of loyalty to Mr President Bill Macbeth. Who was having surgery on the day of pairs which has to be king of the excuses for not playing. We were concerned that this season’s weather curse was going to strike again but it would appear the south of Manchester doesn’t get as much rain as the north. The course was very playable with just a few tyre marks off the mowers letting some greens down. Which considering a lot of courses had been closed that week was good going. The chap looking after us for the pre-game bacon butty was on top of his job and enjoying our company. Until he spotted the trousers on Andy Southworth and co he thought they were replacement chefs from the Brutalist school of cookery.
There was a delay on the first tee which allowed a sizeable crowd to build up and witness the first group teeing off. Now this is a tough tee shot over a valley with the 9th and 18th greens and a stream at the bottom of it. It is an even tougher shot when it’s your first one with the Portland which it was for Tony Watson. Tony had the good sense to wear dark glasses and a big woolly hat. A kind of Roy Orbison meets Benny look. He was last to go in the fourball having witnessed the first three reach the other side of the valley with varying degrees of success. Now if you had bought a rocket that took the trajectory that Tony’s tee shot did you would have demanded your money back. It did go up for a short while and hooked left and down. Towards a lady attempting a short chip by the side of the 9th green. The ball missed her by inches and plugged 3ft behind her. She had obviously gone to finishing school and had drummed into her that one should never reveal one’s emotions. She looked up to Tony and mouthed something that couldn’t be heard due to the gasps being uttered by the crowd who were thinking they had just witnessed a failed assassination attempt. As a credited lip reader I can tell you what she said. It was “ We do allow guide dogs on the course”. Tony did get better and played some good golf as far as I could see from behind my bag.
Although a pairs event the usual ancillary prizes were there for individuals. Below is the table of results.
PM Individual event
Nearest the Pins
|6. Arthur Hughes
||9. Frances Sinnott
||14. John Martin
||17. Howard Dickson
In the Prizes
|3rd||Dave McGovern||Terry Tobin||38|
|2nd||Dave Baynes||Brian Murray||40|
|1st||John Martin||Mel Garner||42|
A part from the dubious duo from Didsbury the Blackley boys appear to have had a good day out. I guess all those years of playing in mud as stood them in good contention for playing in damp conditions. I am forever grateful to Terry Tobin for returning my sand wedge I almost feel guilty about letting his tyre down. Arthur and Brian would have been the housewife’s choice. Arthur won’t mind being beaten by his chums if he keeps that form up he’ll be showing them the way home next season at Blackley. Mel has been steady all season and it would appear all the driving John Martin does to his caravan has transposed to his golf.
The Autumn Cup at Davenport 2017
After a succession of wet days we were blessed with good weather. There had been recent heavy rain which ruled out any run on a course with some high yardage holes. The turnout was low but everybody was enjoying themselves. Having an 11 am start made getting there a bit more relaxed. There were reports of traffic problems getting home, but I think they were starting to clear. When we only play 18 holes a 12 noon start might take both morning and night rush hours out of the equation for us. The catering at Davenport was excellent both morning butty and evening meal.
The golf started with Al Saville and Andy Southworth going out in a buggy. They were wearing their best holiday outfits. Bill Harris had volunteered to go out with this colourful crew as he was walking and wearing conventional golf clothing he blended into the background which suited him fine. I am sure there will be photos of the aforementioned pair, If Boot’s passed them for developing? Below is a table of how the golf panned out.
PM Individual event
Nearest the Pins
|3. Nobody||7. Geoff Haynes
||10. Martin Claffy
|16. Geoff Haynes|
The top of table is littered with big hitters none more so than the winner Martin Claffy who I had the pleasure of sharing my round with along with Howard Dickson. I start a course of therapy to treat the inferiority complex I developed during the round. I only saw their drives on the par 3s having left my telescope at home. The president Bill Macbeth missed the event as he recently had gall stones removed. A pity as an indoor bowling session took place in the main bar of the club. Bill likes his bowls and could have advised the ladies who were constantly asking the question “finger or thumb”.
That’s the end of the singles events for the year. I am keeping the winner of the player of the year close to my chest. It is the third consecutive year where a different player has won each event. But two winners were also winners last year so it is not a case of win once and get clobbered never to be seen again. With talk on an Indian summer the pair’s event at Wilmslow should be very popular even Terry Tobin has managed to dig up a partner.
Golfing in Portugal, 13th - 20th September 2017
It was an early start to this year’s overseas golf trip and despite the hour, 04:30, the queue to drop us off at Terminal 2 was surprisingly long. Everybody however got there on time and check-in went smoothly. We had the usual situation of spouses being split up on different rows of the plane, not sure if some of them actually organised this. We experienced the first real impact of Brexit when we arrived at Faro airport to be greeted with a Disney like queue to have our UK passports checked. Then it was on the coach and off to our hotel the Salgados Palm Village for the week.
We all checked in, had the usual All Inclusive wristbands supplied, and then off to the bar. The rooms were well received with the odd exception, but that’s the luck of the draw.
A motley selection of golfers.
Our first day of golfing was on the Salgados course which was walking distance from our rooms, but a couple of gallant gents hired buggies early to drive back and assist some of the ladies with their clubs. It was tough opening course with lots of water to devour any wayward shots and there were quite a few of them. Some of our members were quite relieved to find a gentleman selling 2nd hand golf balls halfway round, there were a few 10 Euro notes passed over the fence.
Although we hadn’t specified fancy dress three of our party made a noisy entrance
|Results Day 1 Ladies||Results Day 1 Gents|
|Gail Robertson||34||Dave McGovern||34|
|Frances Sinnot||33||Jonny Shepherd||32|
|Chris Waterfield||30||Bob Chadwick||31|
Friday we had our first visit to the Alamos / Morgado courses and 11:30 tee time saw us picked up at hotel at 10:15 ( more about that later). We played the Alamos course that day and a tough opening hole with a huge lake at the bottom of a sloping fairway again caught some of the early golfers out.
|Results Day 2 Ladies||Results Day 2 Gents|
|Carol Aiken||31||Dave McGovern||34|
|Chris Waterfield||29||Colin Melling||32|
|Anne Marie Banks||28||Ian Hopkins||31|
Saturday was back to Salgados and with the first days experience behind us, the dead ball count reduced somewhat. This was a 09:15 start, it looked good on paper but probably a little early in reality.
|Results Day 3 Ladies||Results Day 3 Gents|
|Chris Waterfield||34||Bob Chaddick||40|
|Carol Aiken||30||John Leigh||32|
|Jaqueline Beverley||26||Jonny Shepherd||32|
Sunday was appropriately our day of rest and the beach and pool areas were well populated. The all inclusive took a bit of a bashing again and a few drinks were prevented from going sour in the 29 deg heat.
1st Dave McGovern 20 pints 10 Vodkas
2nd John Leigh 17 Pints 15 Brandies
3rd Phil Lancaster 17 Pints 15 Vodkas (after card playoff, brandy was stronger)
Was back to the golf at Morgados with an 12:30 start so 11:15 pick up. This course was undergoing some work so unfortunately we played three temporary greens. We were expecting this to be the better course of the two but unfortunately due to work going on, not just temporary greens, it disappointed.
|Results Monday Ladies||Results Monday Gents|
|Frances Sinnott||33||Bob Chadwick||38|
|Carol Aiken||32||Frank Burke||37|
|Gail Robertson||31||Ian Hopkins||37|
Final days golf and back to Alamos for 11:30 start so expecting the same as Friday our meeting time was set for 10:00 to 10:15. We all arrived at 10ish and waited, and waited, and waited. Eventually upon asking reception to check on progress we were told that coach had arrived at 09:30, we weren’t there so it left. Some frantic phoning round resulted in 3 mini buses being sourced. Unfortunately for the 8 in the first bus payment had to be made 8 Euros each. The other two buses were sent from the original transfer company and were free. Alls well that ends well and we managed to get to the tees in time. We were a little surprised to find the cost of buggies had risen by 10 Euros since the day before and as a double whammy they weren’t allowed on the fairways. I think we walked
|Results Ladies||Results Gents|
|Frances Sinnott||36||John Leigh||39|
|Chris Waterfield||34||Bob Chadwick||37|
|Gail Robertson||32||Frank Burke||36|
The hotel was good and the acts each evening kept us all royally entertained, though I don’t think anyone watched the magician, as we had our own much better one in the shape of Brendan Brady.
The highlight for the girls was the Elvis tribute act who appeared to be carrying a spare radio mike in his pocket. He gave a good impression of Elvis the Pelvis and you can understand why early in Elvis’s career he was only filmed from waist up. Some of our girls couldn’t tell you if this act looked like him facially as they never got that far up.
A couple of disappointing aspects of the hotel was the fact that tea and coffee were only served in paper cups and all drinks were in plastic cups, that includes all alcoholic ones, not what you expect from an advertised 5 star hotel.
The journey back was a bit tiring not helped by the fact that Faro airport is undergoing some work and the departure lounge had very few seats available, it was described as looking like a refugee camp, bodies everywhere. As you can see from the effects below some people managed to get seats in the bar.
Everyone is looking forward to next year when we will probably return to Turkey, watch the Mancass web space.
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