Ebrahim & Sandy too good at the Mountain

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PSC Golf from The Growling Swan

Monday, March 11, Mountain Shadow – Stableford

Even with three non-regular people not bothering to show up, we still had a full field of 32 ready to play the challenging Mountain Shadow Golf Course for the second time in a couple of weeks.

It was good to see veteran Ted Morris playing with us again and also newcomers Harry Vincenzi from USA & Jerry McCarthy from Ireland.  Another two Growling Swan Delinquents were also playing with us for the first time in big Al Evans & Toby Kreegher plus Aaron Shorten – all from Queensland, Australia.  We also had our two charming Thai lady golfers Miss Wanta & Miss Anna returning to play with us.

Sandy Leiper, Shane Young & Ebrahim.Sandy Leiper, Shane Young & Ebrahim.

It was sadly time to say goodbye to Ed “Willie Nelson” Stewart who will shortly be returning to California after a couple of months of playing golf with us.

We departed the GS a couple of minutes later than our scheduled 8.30 am and headed off through the heavy Monday morning Pattaya traffic which slowed us down a little but we arrived at the Golf Course 47 minutes later.  There was a fair bit of activity but we were able to send our first four-ball away 15 minutes earlier than our booked tee time of 10.00 a.m. and in perfect weather, although fairly hot, and we proceeded at a fairly good pace even with groups directly in front of us.

The breeze was helping to cool things down a touch and as usual the course was in great shape with the excellent greens once again requiring approach shots to finish below the hole otherwise “look out”!  The company was great and with Toddy and I having a bit of a “shoot out” it made for a very enjoyable round of golf which was completed in four hours & twenty five minutes, which on a hot day on a fairly busy course was quite acceptable.

We were able to have 2 grades with six 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.

Ebrahim continued his good form and won the A Grade with an excellent 40 points, 2 points clear of Irishman Jerry McCarty in second place.  With 2 golfers on 36 points a count back was required which resulted in Ted Morris (20 point back nine) finishing third ahead of Mike “Hunter” Gosden (18 point back nine) in fourth spot.  Martin Todd finished fifth with 35 points and with 3 people on 34 points the count back awarded sixth place to Miss Wanta (20 point back nine) with Peter Bye (18 points back nine) and your writer Peter Blackburn (17 point back nine) just missing out.

The popular winner of B Grade was Sandy “Leiperfrog” Leiper with a fine 39 points and Ed “Willie Nelson” Stewart finished second with 38 points.  In third place was Geri Crilly on 36 points and Aaron Shorten came fourth with 35 points.  Max “Corsets” Bracegirdle was fifth on 33 points and scraping on to the podium once again in sixth spot was Graham “Grunter” Buckingham with 32 points.

A Flight (0-23)

1st Ebrahim (17) 40pts

2nd Jerry McCarthy (12) 38pts

3rd Ted Morris (12) 36pts

4th Mike Gosden (12) 36pts

5th Martin Todd (9) 35pts

6th Miss Wanta (12) 34pts

B Flight Grade (24+)

1st Sandy Leiper (34) 39pts

2nd Ed Stewart (19) 38pts

3rd Geri Crilly (27) 36pts

4th Aaron Shorten (22) 35pts

5th Max Bracegirdle (27) 33pts

6th Graham Buckingham (25) 32pts

Near Pins:  5th – Graham Buckingham, 8th – Miss Wanta, 15th – Ted Morris, 17th – Mike Gosden

Long Putts:  9th – Miss Anna, 18th – Sandy Leiper

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 won in a count back by Shane “Jockey” Young who after being a last start winner went from chocolates to boiled lollies.  He of course accepted the cap in very fine style and wore it for quite some time in the bar afterwards, such is the good nature of our Growling Swan crew.

Martin Todd took Deefa for the usual walk and collected many donations for the needy in Pattaya from our ever generous Growling Swan golfers.

Thursday, March 14, Royal Lakeside – Stableford

For the second time this week we had a full complement of 32 players signed up even after a late withdrawal due to sickness and The Growling Swan was a “hive of industry” as we prepared for our departure to the popular Royal Lakeside Golf Course.

We welcomed back good and loyal friend Dave Neal from the UK along with Thientong who is having a break from her caddy duties at Laem Chabang.  Marco Beer from Switzerland was also back with us again and the one and only JJ Harney has returned once more from Ireland to entertain us.  We also welcomed Mick Seaton from Brisbane, Australia, Graham Rice from Gove in the Northern Territory of Australia and his brother John from Gladstone in North Queensland.

The three mini vans departed the GS right on time at 8.30 a.m. and arrived at the course 60 minutes later.  I promised not to mention JJ in his car missing the Royal Lakeside turn off due to too much talking to his passengers, so I apologies to him for the “exposure”.

The golf course was not busy so we were invited to the first tee when we were ready and after a relaxing preparation our first four-ball got away right on time at 10.00 a.m.  Once more the weather was nigh perfect although a very hot day was anticipated and there was not much breeze but this course has adequate drink stops so refreshments were readily available.

Mike Allidi, Dave Neal & Niall Stuart.Mike Allidi, Dave Neal & Niall Stuart.

The course was as ever in great shape and the greens in particular were beautifully prepared whilst sometimes catching out anyone who had to putt from lengthy distances above the hole.  After a fairly quick front nine of just over two hours we slowed down a tad due to the hot conditions (me in particular) and completed the round in the very good time of four hours & twelve minutes.  The company was terrific and it was a most enjoyable round of golf on one of the best courses around, which most players found tough on the day.

We were able to have 2 grades with six podium spots in each.  A Grade was for handicaps 0 to 23 and B Grade for 24 and over.  We had nearest the pins on all the par threes and longest first putts on the 9th & 18th greens.

With his 75 gross it was Mike Allidi who took top spot in the A Grade with 35 points and with two golfers on 34 points it was Miss Anna (18 point back nine) who won the count back and took second place from Marco Beer (15 point back nine) in third spot.  Another count back was needed to determine fourth & fifth places with Roy “Plums” Dayton (17 point back nine) prevailing over Don Richardson (16 point back nine).

With four players on 32 points vying for the last spot on the podium it was Alain “Inspector Clouseau” Taddei (17 point back nine) who finished sixth from Martin Todd (15 point back nine), Graham Rice (14 point back nine) and JJ Harney (13 point back nine).

Dave Neal was the only golfer who played to their handicap on the day and his 36 points was good enough to win the B Grade from Graham “Grunter” Buckingham (17 point back nine), who beat Duangjai “Kae” Tusagad (15 point back nine) on a count back with both on 33 points.  Yet another count back was needed to sort out fourth & fifth places with 2 golfers on 32 points and it was Dick “Reverend” Braimbridge (17 point back nine) edging out Sandy “Leiperfrog” Leiper (14 point back nine) with Max “Corsets” Bracegirdle finishing sixth with 29 points.

A Flight (0-23)

1st Mike Allidi (2) 35pts

2nd Miss Anna (12) 34pts

3rd Marco Beer (17) 34pts

4th Roy Dayton (23) 33pts

5th Don Richardson (11) 33pts

6th Alain Taddei (17) 32pts

B Flight (24+)

1st Dave Neal (24) 36pts

2nd Graham Buckingham (25) 33pts

3rd Duangjai Tusagad (24) 33pts

4th Dick Braimbridge (36) 32pts

5th Sandy Leiper (34) 32pts

6th Max Bracegirdle (27) 29pts

Near Pins:  3rd – Paul Hack, 6th – Miss Anna, 12th – Miss Anna, 15th – Mike Allidi

Long Putts:  9th – John Rice, 18th – Miss Anna

The Growling Swan NAGA Award was well won once more by Niall Stuart who of course had no hesitation in proudly wearing the cap, being the very good sport that he is.  Martin Todd took Deefa for the usual walk and collected many donations for the needy in Pattaya from our ever generous Growling Swan golfers.

It was then back to the Growling Swan to continue the day’s enjoyment and there were many tales to be told on this occasion.  I guess the main one was from the “injured” Mine Host, Peter Grey who is pondering over possible legal proceedings against NAGA winner Niall after being forcibly hit in the chest by a golf ball while sitting in his golf cart, which apparently flew “through the covers” (the golf ball not the cart).  Niall claims it as his best shot of the day and most of his playing partners agreed but probably for the result rather than the execution!

This completely dispels the theory that it is safer to use a cart when playing with the Growling Swan Delinquents!  Lots of laughs, lots of harmless (well, almost) fun and another great day out was had by all.

Note:  Growling Swan Golf welcomes golfers of any persuasion – low & high handicappers alike, female golfers and beginners.  We generally play Mondays & Thursdays, meeting at The Growling Swan (formerly The Bunker Bar) in Soi Chaiyapoon at 8.00 a.m. with transport departing at 8.30 a.m.  For bookings or more information please contact Peter on 0806 351 386 or email to petermalcolmblackburn @gmail.com.