Banjo & Boss continue their run

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IPGC Pattaya Golf Society at Rabbi’s Elephant Bar

The Pattaya Golf Society returned to stableford mode after a heavy two day’s stroke-play at Green Valley, with a visit to Eastern Star on Monday 15th November.  The course was in good condition and the problematic greens posed no real concerns as the large field, divided into two flights at twenty and under, took to the tee.

Interestingly many of the golfers still had some “annual championship” adrenalin in the veins and those who performed well previously were in the frame again.

In the second flight Tim Lazecki embarrassingly accepted third place with 27 points, one behind Jack Robertson and his 28 points.  The flight winner was Len Jones with a mere thirty points being good enough.

In the top flight Murray Hart collected 30 points and took third place with second placed Wichai Tananusorn again in the frame with 31 points.  The best score of the day was recorded by Richard “Banjo” Bannister and the new PGS Net Champion celebrated with 34 points for an easy win.  He also capped a fine day with the only birdie ‘2’, on the third hole.

Kevin McBride celebrated his return with the Booby Bevy after depositing at least two sleeves of balls in the ample Eastern Star water.  But for him, and many others, just being on the golf course was a joy itself as the ravages of a European winter set in elsewhere.

Stoke duo out on their own

After almost a year the Pattaya Golf Society revisited the testing course at Mountain Shadow on Wednesday, 17th November, for a stableford competition with the substantial field divided into two flights at 16 and under.  The course was in excellent condition and it was a treat to find greens with true pace after the trials at Green Valley and Eastern Star during the previous outings.

Historically the course rates as one of the toughest the group plays, with an average winning score of a little over 73 net and it was no surprise that the second flight struggled on the track where accuracy counts for more than bravado.

The second flight saw a Canadian trio head the lists: In third place was Brian Yeung, making his first visit to the podium, with 24 points, in second was Tim Lazecki on 29, a couple of points behind fellow Canadian Jack Robertson, enjoying a new lease of life with his new knee on 31 points.

The top flight had Jens Gunnarsson returning in third place on 32 points with the Stoke-on-Trent duo of Steve Jones and “Banjo” Bannister leading the field with 33 and 35 points respectively.  Their home town is world famous for its pottery industry and it was fitting perhaps that Steve and Banjo, who had contributed his fourth successive win, found accurate wedges and woods to match the skill of his town’s forefather Josiah Wedgwood.  And on the vast Mountain Shadow greens good potters really matter!

The day’s only birdie ‘2’ was recorded by Len Jones on the eighth and Bobby Shirkey enjoyed the Booby Bevy for his low score in his short visit.

Mountain Shadow is a course which is like good wine.  It needs to be tasted only occasionally and treated well to fully enjoy its experience.  The PGS will be back there again during high season, but not just yet.

Wichai throws a spanner in the works

On Friday, 19th November, the Pattaya Golf Society travelled to Greenwood to play a stableford event over the C and B nines with “Banjo” Bannister seeking to equal the group’s record by recording his fifth consecutive victory.  Little wonder then that his playing group was extremely competitive amongst the large field, divided into two flights at nineteen and under.

Greenwood was playing very long on the day with damp fairways giving no run and the white tees back at their furthest extent and with the excruciating collar of Peter Thompson rough surrounding each green the day was to be a long one for all except those who could handle a delicate short game.

In the second flight scores were unimpressive with Gordon Everingham taking third place with 28 points and Tim Lazecki going one better for second.  One of the better high handicapped chippers is Pat Murphy and it was perhaps fitting that he topped the flight with an excellent 33 points.

In the top flight Shui Kodaka found himself in illustrious company sharing third place with Paul McNally, with Paul firing the day’s best gross of eighty on his way to 33 points.  The joint winners were Wichai and “Banjo”, the latter finding the skillful Thai golfer hard to handle on the day as his short game blossomed and he found the fairways with unerring accuracy.

Shui shared the ‘2’s pot with Roy Mann who recorded his first ‘2’s payday in ten years of trying.  Fittingly Wichai and “Banjo” top the ‘Player of the Month’ table as the group enters its final few competitions and no-one would begrudge either winning the close encounter.