The Bear whimpers

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IPGC golf from The Haven

Monday, August 11, Greenwood A & C – Stableford

CSS 75 NC

1st Shane Elder (23) 35pts

2nd Terry Hodgkiss (23) 32pts

3rd Hal Hart (21) 30pts

4th Ben Jackson (16) 30pts

5th Shuichi Kodaka (19) 29pts

6th Markku Tynell (23) 29pts

A very tough week of golf started at Greenwood on Monday, with the A and C courses being the test of the day.

Barry Winton & Shane Elder.Barry Winton & Shane Elder.

As a complete newcomer to Pattaya Shane Elder knew nothing about the course, which may well have accounted for him posting the best score of the day as it held no fear for him.  Many of the regulars meanwhile fell afoul of the wind and the speed of the greens, in spite of the excellent condition of the course in all areas.

Shane’s one over handicap proved to be easily the best, with Terry Hodgkiss getting nearest three strokes behind in second place.  Hal Hart took third spot after a count back over Ben Jackson, scoring a better 13 to 11 after once again throwing a couple of blobs into an otherwise tidy card.

Shuichi Kodak was looking to be in contention after a slow start to the day on the front nine but with a zero-pointer on the last he had to settle for fifth after winning a count back with a better 16 to 12 over Markku Tynell.

With the course difficulty so high it was little surprise to find there were no 2’s in either division.

Wednesday, August 13, Khao Kheow B & C – Stableford

CSS 72

1st Barry Winton (5) 35pts

2nd Mike Dabanovich (13) 34pts

3rd Ben Jackson (16) 30pts

4th Celia Culverhouse (20) 30pts

5th Andrew Eaton (14) 29pts

6th Peter Koha (18) 29pts

The second test of the week was scheduled for Khao Kheow where the B and C courses were in play and a stiff breeze meant that the big hitters would probably win the day, which indeed they did as Barry Winton cruised through the back nine in gross level par.  Having used up all his handicap plus one covering the front nine, what should have been a roar from “Mee the Bear’ sadly turned out to be only slightly more than a whimper as he lost the big match in his fourball three down.  Strange game this golf.

Mike Dabanovich, being undoubtedly the longest hitter playing out of Soi 13, just missed out in second spot after a having a very tidy opening half as he dropped out of the reckoning with a double zero return on the 16th and 17th holes and a water ball on 18 from which he recovered for two points to finish one off the pace.

Ben Jackson got the better of a count back for third place, winning it by 17 to 15, which left Celia Culverhouse in fourth position.

Andrew Eaton made sure of his place on the podium in fifth as he also won a count back over Peter Koha with a stunning 21 to 20 result after they had both slipped badly over the front nine holes.

Once again there were no 2’s in the second division but Mike Dabanovich stroked one in on the island green eighth on A course to clean out the first division pool.  This birdie also put him four up, with Trevor Schirmer as his partner, in his fourball game with the day’s eventual winner, whose own partner sadly was the seemingly luckless Stephen Beard.

Friday, August 15, Bangpra – Stableford

CSS 75 NC

1st Don Everett (19) 33pts

2nd Allen Raaen (7) 32pts

3rd Terry Hodgkiss (23) 31pts

4th Shane Elder (23) 30pts

5th Jon Batty (10) 30pts

6th Kevin Blake (8) 30pts

And so to possibly the toughest test of the week, Bangpra with its notoriously devilish greens.  As expected the going was extremely difficult with the best of the day belonging to Don Everett, a three over handicap return that ensured the day would become the second non-counting event of the week.

Allen Raaen ran him close, getting within a point but a zero-pointer on the last ended his chance of the top spot.  Terry Hodgkiss was again amongst the podium placements in third place another shot behind after he had a poor start, returning just 13 points but a fine back nine almost saw him through and left him ruing the slow start to the day.

Shane Elder won a three-way count back for fourth with a best 16, leaving Jon Batty in fifth and Kevin Blake in sixth after they had tied the back nine on 15 apiece and Jon had a better 11 to 10 on the last six.

There were no 2’s in the first division but Celia Culverhouse swept the pool clean in the second division as she tapped in from very short range on the 151 yard eighth after narrowly missing the hole in one and the special golf bag on offer as always from the IPGC.

There was some great excitement amongst the caddies of the group that included Mark Armstrong, the noted chef from Sydney, Kevin Blake and Russell Gilroy, when a wagonload of monkeys descended upon their golf carts and purloined the wonderful picnic spread that had been prepared by Mark.  Much to the dismay of the proposed feasters the monkeys then sat in the trees and played with their lunch before devouring the lot.

Note.  If you would like to play with The Haven group, you can contact mobile 094 567 5726 or call in to The Haven Hotel, at 185 Soi 13, between Beach Road and 2nd Road.  All transportation to the course is arranged and you do not need to sign up prior to the day, but you should be there by 8.15 on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday on the days that you wish to play.  A schedule of courses to be played can be found on our web site at www.thehaven-hotel.com.