Watson the class act at Bangpra

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PSC golf from Tropical Bert’s

Tuesday, June 12, Bangpra – Stableford

This is the ‘original’ course for we who play from Pattaya; Bangpra has a sense of history about it and is a fine mature course.  On this day we had practically a full turnout and we were soon on our way down there and with Route 7 now reaching practically into Pattaya, the trip is a relatively short one.

The new changing rooms are quite palatial and we were soon changed and onto the first tee, where we noticed the course was nearly empty but looked to be in fine condition.  The fairways were well grassed and as we played from hole to hole we realised that the greens, if not totally back to their former slickness, were still really fast and extremely tricky.

Tuesday’s top 2, Bob Watson, right, with Derek Brook. Tuesday’s top 2, Bob Watson, right, with Derek Brook.

As we played on we noticed the wind rising and the trouble on this course is that with such a fine surrounding of trees, the wind always seems to be in your face.  You finish one hole battling into the breeze, then on the next hole going in the opposite direction and still feel as if you are facing the elements again.  Weird!  Still, the course at least was empty and we were able to move around at a fast, if windblown, pace.  All in all it was a very enjoyable round.

Back at Bert’s it was into the presentation, where for the first time for a long time one player won all 4 near pins.  I do not normally comment on near pins, but this being a bit special, it was a well done to Johnny Guarness!

So to the results, and with a great gross 72, and 38 points, the winner was Bob Watson.  It is difficult for a low handicapper to win a stableford event.  Mind, I cursed him up and down as in second place with 37 points was your correspondent, then in third was Joel Flor with 31 points and in fourth was Brian Parish with 29 points in a four way count back that saw Mike O’Brien in fifth and ‘The Forgettable’ Barry Elphick and Tom Cotton just missing out.

Friday, June 15, Crystal Bay – Stableford

So off we went to Crystal Bay, we go there a lot these days.  There are several reasons why, mainly a great ‘Sports Day’ rate, but also this is a course you can play and usually come off with a good score as it is fairly forgiving.  I hear all the talk about golfers wanting to test themselves, but when it comes down to it, make a choice between a course such as this and a ‘testing course’ and the list fills up faster for a good, cheap, relaxing day out.  Mind, we do have some ‘masochists’.  It is the difference between playing Crystal Bay and Mountain Shadow really.

So down there and a quick book in, and onto the first tee of the test for the day, B & A Nines and off we went.  This was where the words written above came back to bite us.  All the greens were cored and sanded on the front half, so that hit the greens and the sand stopped the ball running to the back, get past the sand and it was fast and ran off the back.  Happy days!  Still, the rest of the course was fine and you just had to take the rough with the smooth.

So the day turned out difficult, so much so that most players found it hard to approach 30 points and only two actually beat their handicaps.  Not at all like a normal day at Crystal Bay.  Still, it is always an enjoyable day at this course, and reasonable, so most players enjoyed it.

Back at Bert’s it into the presentation and the winner on the day was Barry Elphick with 37 points, but only on count back over Mashi Kaneta.  Mashi is looking dangerous again.  In third we had Mike O’Brian with 34 points.  Then it was relax time!  TTFN.

Near Pins:  Alan Sullivan (2), Ted Morris, Mike Gaussa