We were happy to welcome Adrian Schmidt from Perth in Western Australia, Bob King from Somerset in the UK, Danny Williams from Wales and Dave MacNamara & Julian Fitzgerald from Ireland.
Mike Gosden, Peter Grey, Duangjai Tusagad & Roy Dayton.
Departing the GS right on time at 8.15 am we arrived at the course just 43 minutes later to find it fairly deserted which enabled our first group, a three-ball to tee off 18 minutes ahead of schedule at 9.42 am. This really is a great time of year for golf as the weather was perfect, not too hot with a gentle breeze and as usual the course was looking terrific with lush fairways and well prepared greens which were fairly quick at times.
The two-ball in front of us quickly disappeared and we breezed through the front nine in one hour & fifty two minutes which included a drink stop after the sixth green. Our good pace continued on the back nine and although it become fairly hot when the breeze practically disappeared our full round was completed in the excellent time of three hours & forty eight minutes. An extremely enjoyable day on a great course with fine company.
We were able to have 2 grades with four podium spots in each. A Grade was for handicaps 0 to 17 and B Grade for 18 and over. We had nearest the pins on all the par threes and longest first putts on the 9th & 18th greens.
It was a very close contest in the A Grade with just one point separating the four placegetters and with 2 golfers on 36 points it was your writer, Peter Blackburn (21 point back nine) who took top spot on a count back from Ebrahim (18 point back nine) in second place. One point further back there were another two on the same score which saw the count back giving third place to veteran Don Richardson (18 point back nine & 11 points on the last 6 holes) from Frank (Paco) Waterhouse (18 point back nine & 10 points on the last 6 holes) in fourth place.
It was once again Duangjai “Kae” Tusagad (22 point back nine) who won the B Grade with 37 points in a count back from JC Lhoste (20 point back nine) and I’m sure one of Kae’s biggest fans, JJ, back in Ireland, will be delighted as he is following her progress intently. In third place came Kae’s partner Roy “Plums” Dayton with 35 points and one point back in fourth place was Pierre Dardenne.
A Flight (0-17)
1st Peter Blackburn (10) 36pts
2nd Ebrahim (17) 36pts
3rd Don Richardson (12) 35pts
4th Frank Waterhouse (14) 35pts
B Flight (18+)
1st Duangjai Tusagad (26) 37pts
2nd J C Lhoste (23) 37pts
3rd Roy Dayton (23) 35pts
4th Pierre Dardenne (25) 34pts
Near Pins: 5th – Sandy Leiper, 8th – Alain Taddei, 15th – Takeshi Hakozaki
Long Putts: 9th – Roy Dayton, 18th – Ed Stewart
The Growling Swan NAGA Award, (awarded to the golfer who has the worst score on the day and discreetly their score is not made public) was narrowly won by Frank Donnelly who accepted the cap in fine spirit.
Thursday, Feb. 28, The Emerald – Monthly Mug/Stroke
It was that time of the month again when we get to play for the ever-popular Growling Swan Monthly Mug and after originally having a full field of 32 it was reduced to 29 with a late scratching due to sickness and a couple who just didn’t bother showing up.
We were happy to welcome Tony Olcorn returning from Brisbane, Australia, Nolan Wise from Tasmania and Harry “HTH” Wszola from Queensland, Australia. It was unfortunately time to say farewell to Frank Waterhouse who in the next few hours was off back to the North East of England after a few months here in Pattaya. There was of course a strong showing from Peter Grey & his Growling Swan delinquents who were not at all deterred by the thought of a stroke round at the challenging Emerald Golf Course.
Frank Donnelly, Duangjai Tusagad & Peter Blackburn.
We had been allocated a later than usual tee time so it meant a “sleep in” for most and we managed to depart the GS right on time at 9.00 am and proceeded south, reaching the golf course 52 minutes later after encountering fairly busy traffic along the way. Not surprisingly, although arriving almost one hour before our 10.48 am tee time we were invited to tee off practically straight away and our first four-ball teed off 21 minutes ahead of schedule.
The weather was fine but hot with very little wind and the course was in very good shape so there were no excuses apart from the toughness of the venue. We proceeded at a good pace although a couple of drink stops were necessary as it became increasingly hotter and we completed our full round in the reasonable time of four hours & twenty five minutes.
As the scores came in afterwards it was obvious most had struggled with this stroke event with the exception of one golfer who stood out from the rest of us.
In addition to the Monthly Mug Winner we were able to have 2 grades with five podium spots in each. A Grade was for handicaps 0 to 18 and B Grade for 19 and over. We had nearest the pins on all the par threes and longest first putts on the 9th & 18th greens.
It was a no contest as far as the Mug winner was concerned and continuing her fine form, albeit with a rapidly reducing handicap it was Duangjai “Kae” Tusagad who won the coveted trophy with a fine net 69.
Coming first in A Grade on a count back with 2 golfers on net 75 it was Mike “Hunter” Gosden (net 37 back nine) who nudged the departing Frank “Paco” Waterhouse (net 40 back nine) into second place. In third place was Paul Hack with net 76 and another count back was required to determine fourth & fifth resulting in Ken Blinco (net 37 back nine) just ahead of Alain “Inspector Clouseau” Taddei (net 40 back nine) with both having net 78’s.
In the B Grade it was Roy “Plums” Dayton who was the winner with a net 75 followed by Graham “Grunter” Buckingam in second spot with net 76. In third place came Geri Crilly with net 81 followed by Patrick Poussier in fourth place. In a count back for fifth it was J C Lhoste net 39 back nine) who edged out Tony “Spaggoni” Olcorn (net 48 back nine) with both on net 84.
1st Duangjai “Kae” Tusagad (26) net 69
A Flight (0-18)
1st Mike Gosden (12) net 75
2nd Frank Waterhouse (14) net 75
3rd Paul Hack (12) net 76
4th Ken Blinco (16) net 78
5th Alain Taddei (16) net 78
B Flight (19+)
1st Roy Dayton (23) net 75
2nd Graham Buckingham (26) net 76
3rd Geri Crilly (27) net 81
4th Patrick Poussier (20) net 82
5th J C Lhoste (23) net 84
Near Pins: 5th – Mike Gosden, 7th – Mike Allidi, 13th – Mike Allidi, 15th – Duangjai Tusagad
Long Putts: 9th – Duangjai Tusagad, 18th – Pat Smith
The Growling Swan NAGA Award was easily won by Nolan Wise who accepted the cap in fine spirit and wore the cap well into the night. Just out of hospital a couple of days ago after a back operation we were happy to see big Ken Bernek pay us a visit back at The Growling Swan for presentations and he kindly paraded Deefa the Dog who collected many donations for the needy in Pattaya from our ever generous Growling Swan crew, including fines for intestinal indiscretions from Peter Grey & Adrian Schmidt.
I thanked Mine Host Peter Grey (once again deliriously happy at not winning the NAGA) for sponsoring the Monthly Mug and also providing a delicious chicken supper. It was another great day, very well supported and we look forward to next month’s “Mug Day” at Greenwood.