The Gents’ Winter League competition, played over nine rounds in leagues, prior to a knockout format for the top teams in each league, reached the (almost) halfway stage with four rounds played. On Sunday, in truly atrocious wet weather which resulted in bunkers being flooded and greens saturated, all the teams struggled manfully to complete their matches. Of the forty pairs who have entered the competition only three teams remain with a 100% record to date and two of these are in the same league. Graham Smith and Ian Copley, together with Anthony Mousley and John Herbert seem destined to fight over the honours in League 3 whilst Bryan Birchall and Matt Williams are undefeated in League 4.
Seniors’ Winter League, rounds 4 & 5
Just prior to the Christmas holidays the Seniors section played the fourth (of 10) of their Winter League competitions and in spite of the high winds scoring was at a good level with eight players separated by 3 stableford points. In third place John Morfee scored 37 points but was beaten into second place by Keith Smith on 38 points in a round that included a run of 6 pars on the front nine; an error on the difficult tenth (bearing in mind the high winds) meant a double bogey to mar a near perfect round. The winner, however, was Mike Hoye who has had a highly impressive run of consistent golf and scores over the past weeks; Mike also score 38 points but managed to cancel out his less good holes with a mix of two birdies (on the fourth and sixth holes) and pars.
In the Seniors Winter League, after the New Year, the fifth round was played in windless and dry conditions although the ground was still soaked from the previous day’s downpour. Scoring was again consistently high with eight players scoring better than par and separated by only 4 shots. John Dowding scored 38 points to take third place on countback whilst the top two places were also decided on countback. Rob Gray, who has been scoring consistently over the previous rounds and currently heads the competition, started very strongly with a birdie on the first hole and amassed 22 points on the front nine. His return half, however, was marred by a failure to score on the fourteenth and which adversely affected the countback totals. Top place was taken by Ian Jarvis,also with 40 points, who likewise had a failure to score but this was on the par 3 sixth; his back nine score of 19 secured the top place.