Quality golf on a quality course

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IPGC Pattaya Golf Society at the Elephant Bar

The Pattaya Golf Society visited the best conditioned course in the province on Monday, 12th January when they called at Bangpakong Riverside to play a stableford competition in two flights, with the cut at seventeen and under.  And what a course it is!  The fairways are like carpets, the bunkers are all compressed and the greens are about as consistent as they get.  Magnificent!  

So why change it, it aint broke?  The management are trying to toughen the course up and as a result they are redesigning the greenside bunkers to give them a vertical face, in some cases as much as five feet high.  Woe betide the golfer whose ball lies at the bottom of one of the faces for there is no way to get it out safely, let alone accurately.  It is indeed an intriguing prospect.  The answer is quite simple – don’t go in the bunkers!

In the second flight, Mike King and Ken Lambert shared third place with 32 points whilst Mike Sim and Toshi Aoki shared the major prize with 33 points.  There were no ‘2’s in the second flight.

Champions Jon Batty & Chris Smith (centre) flanked by runners-up Rick Schramm and Mark Lang.Champions Jon Batty & Chris Smith (centre) flanked by runners-up Rick Schramm and Mark Lang.

In the top flight, Steve Evans and John Chelo shared third place with 35 points leaving Alan Flynn in second with 36.  The winner played one of those rounds to remember.  Jon Batty’s iron play has always been solid but this day it was exquisite and combined with his putting it helped him record the best score of the year so far with the group, 41 points.  He also recorded a ‘2’ on the seventh hole to share the pot with Gary Bolger.

Yvonne Earley scooped the bar’s consolation beer and the Booby Bevy went to Keith Melbourne after his golf shoe gave up the fight on the third hole and his gait became more and more unbalanced, as did his game.

People will soon forget about Keith’s shoe but they will not forget the day at Bangpakong Riverside for a long while yet.

PGS Annual

Championship –

best one yet

Low Gross

1st Chris Smith 157

2nd Mark Lang 157

Low Net

1st Jon Batty 146

2nd Rick Schramm 146

The Pattaya Golf Society held its Annual Championship at Khao Kheow on Wednesday and Friday, 14th and 16th January.  Always a popular event, the large field found a course in excellent condition but a strong breeze in evidence on the first day.  The format was pure 36 hole strokeplay with no distractions like near pins or even ‘2’s although a birdie on the card would benefit the golfer and be very welcome.  The group had assembled the best ever in terms of quality and a close encounter was eagerly awaited.

As the first day slowly unravelled, all golfers found the going tough on the B and A nines  in the wind and even pre-tournament favourite Chris Smith left shots on the course in an opening round of 82 gross.  The best gross of the day was the 81 recorded by Barry Wellings.

In the Net Championship, Alan Flynn ended the day in control on net 74 with Rick Schramm hovering ominously on his shoulder with net 75.

The second day dawned bright and it was a relief to stand on the first tee with no wind present.  Scores were much better in the improved conditions and tense jousting in both formats was the order of the day.

The Net Championship saw Jon Batty and Rick Schramm finish tied on net 146 (two over) and a count back over the final eighteen holes saw Jon take the honours with net 70 to Rick’s net 71.

The Gross Championship was an even more tense affair with Mark Lang and Chris Smith going head-to-head throughout their rounds.  First Chris had his nose in front only for Mark to pull shots back and at the turn they were still all square.  Mark’s birdie on C3 was clawed back by Chris’s effort on the next hole and thus it continued.  With one hole to go a chunked chip by Mark from the semi rough pulled up short allowing Chris to putt for birdie and in an instant the day was won.  It was the best contested Championship ever held by PGS and all the golfers are to be congratulated for their efforts on two tough days.

Other presentations back at the Elephant Bar in Soi Buakhao included the PGS Player of the Year award for 2014 and David Thomas accepted the trophy after a fine year which had seen him contribute greatly on and off the course.  The runner up was Wichai Tananusorn who will be back in Pattaya in a week to collect his well-earned trophy.

Khao Kheow and the members of PGS had also contributed greatly to the success of the week and PGS organiser Mr Len was warm in his appreciation of the support the group had received from members after the third best year in ten for rounds played.