Erik and Shuichi take the Medals


IPGC golf from The Haven

Sunday, Oct. 16, Green Valley – Stableford

For the second week running incessant rain prevented the completion of Sunday’s competition, which resulted in an early return to the Golf Bar where Jeff and John supplied the necessary wetness on the inside to go along with the outside following the early showers.

Monday, Oct. 17, Treasure Hill – Stableford

CSS 72

1st Trevor Schirmer (15) 35pts

2nd Nigel Jenkinson (10) 34pts

3rd Alan Pilkington (9) 31pts

4th Shuichi Kodaka (16) 30pts

5th Erik Donnestad (4) 30pts

With so many of the local courses having suffered badly with an excess of water over the past three weeks, it was not surprising that the day’s venue was a little on the muddy side but after the local rule for the day was defined as ‘lift and place’ on the fairways, a reasonable round was the result for most of the participants.

Alan Pilkington.Alan Pilkington.

Trevor Schirmer just kept ahead of Nigel Jenkinson with a strong finish over the back nine, even with the latter sinking a long one of the 17th for a birdie, but by the slimmest of margins needing a solid par on the 18th, which is never an easy ask on that hole.

Alan Pilkington was in contention until the last four holes, over which he slipped below his previous form for the first fourteen and so had to settle for third place.

Shuichi Kodaka, having been cut a couple of shots on his handicap following his sterling round in the previous week, did well enough over the inward nine to win a count back over Erik Donnestad by a margin of 15 to 13 after Erik had started the day very steadily.

Nigel Jenkinson and Alan Pilkington shared the 2’s pot in the first division whilst John Teague cleaned out the multi roll over second division.

Erik Donnestad.Erik Donnestad.

Before presenting the prizes The Doc welcomed back John Teague and Kare Lunde and had a farewell for Paul Hartley.

Wednesday, Oct. 19, Phoenix – Monthly Medals

CSS 74

Division 1

1st Erik Donnestad (4) 72pts

2nd Barry Wellings (5) 74pts

3rd Alan Pilkington (9) 78pts

Division 2

1st Shuichi Kodaka (16) 80pts

2nd Rod Howett (23) 80pts

3rd Joe Niisato (16) 82pts

Trevor Schirmer.Trevor Schirmer.

Playing from the blue tees with the course in a similar condition to all the others in the area was always going to be a bit of a struggle, but the first division generally finished with a fair return while the second division found the going to be a bit more than could be managed.

Erik Donnestad showed his class and ability with a two under the day’s Competition Standard Scratch (CSS) of 74 which was enough for him to secure his first monthly medal in the first division and become the eleventh different player to qualify for the play-offs for the Gold and Silver Medals, to be held in December.  Unfortunately he will not be able to participate as his skiing activities in Norway with his family will have to take precedence.

Speaking of the family, both of whom are former members of the IPGC, Erik’s wife Anna now plays off scratch and daughter Julie plays regularly on the Swedish Ladies PGA professional circuit making it quite difficult for him to get many bragging opportunities at home.  Which is a long way removed from past times that included him representing Norway in the Golf World Cup and playing in the same group alongside Arnold Palmer in the American team.

Barry Wellings, another internationally acclaimed sportsman, from the world of football, took second place a couple of strokes behind with Alan Pilkington, the internationally renowned builder, slipping into third spot following a strong run into the finish.

Shuichi Kodaka.Shuichi Kodaka.

The second division’s medal was taken by Shuichi Kodaka with a round, that whilst good for the win was otherwise less than memorable, but it was sufficient to take his third medal of the year.

Rod Howett plugged away manfully but had to give way to a better count back by Shuichi following his strong finish by a score of 38.5 to 36, after Rod had led after the front nine and had looked set to take his first medal of the year and qualify for the end of year play-offs among the second division contenders.

Joe Niisato, playing in his first ever monthly medal, found things just a bit harder from the back tees but still did well enough to earn third place.

To add to his day’s haul Shuichi Kodaka had the lone 2 in the second division while Trevor Schirmer and Erik Donnestad shared the first division pool.

Prior to the prize presentations there were welcomes for new members Bernie Burckard, Jon Batty and Carl Plaisted and welcome backs for Joe Peters and Joe Niisato.

Friday, Oct. 21, Pleasant Valley – Stableford

CSS 72

1st Alan Pilkington (9) 38pts

2nd Roar Berger (26) 37pts

3rd Erik Donnestad (4) 36pts

4th Mark Armstrong (21) 33pts

5th Yasuo Suzuki (9) 32pts

After some urgent renegotiations prior to the start of the round, following a difference of opinion as to the correct price of a green fee for the day, the day got off to the now regular wet round and once again ‘lift and place’ was the rule for the competition.

Alan Pilkington continued where he had left off on the previous outing with a solid start to the day that he managed to keep going through to the end, which proved to be enough to take the top spot by a single point from Roar Berger as the shorter length of the course played to his strength off the tee as he produced some prodigious drives down the middle.

Erik Donnestad again returned a very tidy level handicap card another shot back in third, while Mark Armstrong, who is now playing off a handicap some seven shots less than when he first arrived from Oz some six months ago, slipped into fourth a single point ahead of Yasuo Suzuki in fifth.

Yasuo is looking forward to the next couple of weeks, when he will be leading some of his fellow countrymen on their regular tour to the Land of Smiles, and hoping for a few better results than he has been returning of late so that he can maximize the opportunities.

There were no 2’s in the second division but Nigel Jenkinson had the sole one in the first division to sweep the pool.

Note:  The Haven group now departs Soi 13 at the earlier time of 9 am until further notice.  If you would like to play with the group you can contact mobile 082 219 0965 or call in to the hotel at 185 Soi 13 between Beach Road and 2nd Road.  All transportation to the course is arranged and you do not need to sign up prior to the day, but you should be there by 8.30 on Mondays, Wednesday,

Fridays and 9.00am on Sundays on the days you wish to play.  A schedule of courses to be played can be found on our web site at