Aussies make better golfers than cricketers

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IPGC golf from The Links

Sunday, March 4, Green Valley – Stableford

Today we were back home to our preferred Sunday destination, albeit a month earlier than originally intended.  With places limited to 24, demand exceeded supply and a number of golfers unfortunately applied too late to get a slot – get your names down early for the next month or so to avoid disappointment!

With the course extremely busy, the first tee off was delayed by 45 minutes, giving everyone ample time for lunch/practice (and one golfer to get over from Pattaya Country Club, where he’d been waiting patiently for the rest to arrive).  Once we got started, however, the pace of play was generally good.  With one late cancellation due to illness, 23 golfers meant the usual two flights, with the cut coming at 0-18 and 19+.

Martin Grimoldby.Martin Grimoldby.

In the A flight, Green Valley specialist Joe McArdle took third place, losing out to holidaying Aussie Neville Duncan on 19 to 17 count back after both carded 33 points.  The winner was the genial Irishman Charlie Lapsey, who played steady golf in difficult conditions to card 35 points, the only player to score anywhere near handicap.

The B flight was an all Aussie affair, indeed all 3 winners are currently visiting from the same club, Wakehurst, in Sydney.  Frank Dunstan and Peter McKenzie could only be split by 17–16 count back after both scored 32 points, with Russell Gilroy triumphant on 33.

The ‘2’s went to Neville Duncan (2), Peter Skinner, Joe Peters & Russell Gilroy.

A Flight

1st Charlie Lapsey (9) 35pts

2nd Neville Duncan (11) 33pts

3rd Joe McArdle (12) 33pts

B Flight

1st Russell Gilroy (19) 33pts

2nd Peter McKenzie (24) 32pts

3rd Frank Dunstan (23) 32pts

Tuesday, March 6, Royal Lakeside – Stableford

Eighteen players made the trip to Royal Lakeside for our first time since the greens have been re-laid, and found the course to be in generally good condition, (for some that meant when they finally found the course, after taking an unguided tour of Bangpakong province).

Rob Taylor & Mike Korney.Rob Taylor & Mike Korney.

We arrived to an almost deserted car park and were able to tee off immediately on arrival, but with a strong wind blowing all day and the new greens difficult to hold and with some tough pin positions, scoring was generally difficult.

Eighteen players meant only one division with four places, and only an excellent round by Martin Gimoldby prevented another Aussie clean sweep.  Three players tied on 32 points, with Glenn Eldershaw taking fourth place, ahead of Russell Exley and Jun Ishikara, his 17 point back 9 proving one better than his counterparts.  Russell Gilroy and Neville Duncan were again in the places, with 33 and 34 points respectively, but Martin Grimonldbys excellent 37 points meant the day belonged to him.  Better news followed as he also registered the only ‘2’ of the day.

Back at The Links, the presentation was briefly interrupted, and the Aussies day soured somewhat, as we all watched their cricket team soundly thrashed by Sri Lanka in the one day match.

1st Martin Grimoldby (6) 37pts

2nd Neville Duncan (11) 34pts

3rd Russell Gilroy (19) 33pts

4th Glenn Eldershaw (20) 32pts

Thursday, March 8, Pattana – Stableford

A strong field of 26 players meant we were back to two flights, with an unusually low cut coming at 0-11 and 12+.  We played the B&C courses, and with 17 of the 26 players falling in Congu handicap categories 1 and 2, the decision to play off the white tees was more than justified.

We managed to tee off about 20 minutes early, but torrential rain after 3 holes meant we had to take shelter for 45 minutes until the greens were playable again.  The course on the whole withstood the downpour well, although we had to revert to ‘clean and place’ on the fairways, and the greens understandably slowed during the day as the sun came out and encouraged the blades to rise.

Scoring was generally good in the A Flight, with Jun Ishikara taking third place with 35 points.  8 handicappers Rob Taylor and Phil Groves both carded the regulation 36 points, Rob taking first place by virtue of a 19 to 17 count back.

Scoring was understandably harder in the B Flight, with Mark Stanley, unusually relegated to the flight despite having a12 handicap, coming third with 30 points.  Frank Dunstan was yet again in the money, coming second with 32 points.  A deserved victory, however, went to Mike “Papa” Korney, for the first time in his illustrious Links career, showing perseverance will sometimes pay off.  Victory was all the more sweet for Mike, who after deciding to start taking his putter to bed with him at night, registered no 3 putts for the first time in 200 years, on his way to 33 points.

The ‘2’s pot was shared by Seil Revels & Martin Grimoldby.

A Flight

1st Rob Taylor (8) 36pts

2nd Phil Groves (8) 36pts

3rd Jun Ishikara (11) 35pts

B Flight

1st Mike Korney (19) 32pts

2nd Frank Dunstan (23) 31pts

3rd Mark Stanley (12) 30pts

Note:  The Links depart from the hotel on Soi Buakhao at 9.30am on Tuesdays and Thursdays and for Rayong Green Valley every Sunday.  Sign up at the hotel or contact Jon on 080 021 1034.  A full schedule of courses can be found on the IPGC website www.ipgc.org.