PSC golf from The Growling Swan
Monday, May 27, Treasure Hill – Stableford
We had a good “low season” group of 20 signed up for the day’s event at Treasure Hill and we assembled at The Growling Swan in readiness for the trip to play this challenging layout.
We welcomed back Paul Sharples from Oman, Russell Goldsworthy From Perth, Western Australia, Michael Healey from Ireland and regular visitor Bob Akapita from Gove in the Northern Territory of Australia.
Max Bracegirdle, Wes Starr, Peter Grey, Kev Waycott & Paul Hack.
Sadly it was time to say farewell to two of our “permanents”, Ken & Wendy Bernek who are returning home to Detroit, Michigan due to domestic issues. They will be sorely missed as they have hardly missed a game since we started and Ken’s assistance has been invaluable to me in the time he has been with us. They promise to return in the future so Bon Voyage dear friends and thanks again.
Everyone was on time which enabled our 2 minivans to depart five minutes early at 8.25 am and we headed off in the Monday morning traffic with a reasonably good run up 331. We arrived at the golf course 51 minutes later where there were hardly any cars in the car park which indicated a fairly prompt start to our round after checking in & preparation.
We were, as expected, invited to tee off at our leisure with no-one to be seen ahead and we sent our first four-ball away 15 minutes ahead of schedule at 9.45 a.m. in hot and steamy conditions. It must be said that this golf course is in superb condition including the well prepared greens although the fairway grass is different to most courses and some of the short rough demands respect.
We took our time in the oppressive heat and regularly stocked up with drinks, as you can on this course with plenty of drink stations and after enjoying the round and the company we completed the round in fours and twenty minutes.
We were able to have 2 Grades with three podium spots in each. A Grade was for handicaps 0 to 12 and B Grade for 13 and over. There were rewards for nearest the pins on all the par threes and longest first putts on the 9th & 18th greens.
As usual the golf course got the better of most but despite being “taken by the crocodile” it was Sal Brizzi who had the best round of the day by far and won the A Grade section with a fine 39 points. In second place came your writer, Peter Blackburn with a modest 34 points and Mike Allidi finished third with 33 points.
Irishman Geri Crilly got the shock of his life when announced as the winner of B Grade with 32 points, 2 points ahead of Ken Hole in second place and Ebrahim’s 28 points was good enough to secure third spot.
A Flight (0-12)
1st Sal Brizzi (7) 39pts
2nd Peter Blackburn (11) 34pts
3rd Mike Allidi (2) 33pts
B Flight (13+)
1st Geri Crilly (27) 32pts
2nd Ken Hole (16) 30pts
3rd Ebrahim (14) 28pts
Near Pins: 2nd – Paul Sharples, 6th – Sal Brizzi, 13th – Russell Goldsworthy, 17th – Ken Hole
Long Putts: 9th – Wendy Bernek, 18th – Dick Braimbridge
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 by Sandy “Leiperfrog” Leiper who naturally accepted the award in fine spirit. Big Ken “let’s hear it for” Bernek was kind enough to parade Deefa the Dog for one last time for a while and collected many donations for the needy in Pattaya.
Sal Brizzi, Sandy Leiper & Geri Crilly.
Back at the bar afterwards the beer was Aussie cold as ever and we once again discussed the upcoming Growling Swan First Anniversary tournament at Crystal Bay on Monday, June 10th. It will be a four-ball Stableford event with a random draw pairing an A Grade golfer with a B Grade golfer, the draw to be done at the course prior to commencement of play. The entry fee is 500 baht which will include terrific prizes and a sumptuous meal back at The Growling Swan where the presentations will be held. The sign-up sheet is on the board at The Growling Swan and although we have initially 32 spots we can accommodate more if required.
Thursday, May 30, Khao Kheow A & C –Monthly Mug/Stroke
As the saying goes “it’s that time of the month again” and the popular Khao Kheow was the venue for our 12th Monthly Mug where we get to count all our shots as we compete for this coveted award. Several late withdrawals were understandable as one of our regular visitors, Tony Alcorn, suffered a heart attack in the early hours of the morning and was taken by friends to Bangkok Hospital Pattaya where he currently is (Friday morning) and at the time of writing is doing OK. Our prayers are with him and we are all wishing him a speedy recovery.
It left 21 starters for the event and as we assembled at the GS we welcomed back Peter Starr & his son Wesley from Cairns in Queensland, Australia, Ian Masterson from Ireland and local resident Mark West playing with us for the first time. It was once more time to farewell Bob Akapita who is returning to work in Gove in the Northern Territory of Australia.
With everyone punctual we headed off in 2 minivans right on time at 8.30 a.m. and arrived at Khao Kheow just 42 minutes later to find a reasonable amount of activity. With the B nine currently closed for renovations it was A & B to be played and our first four-ball got away 15 minutes ahead of our scheduled 10.00 a.m. tee time and in hot & steamy conditions we proceeded with regular glances upwards as the dark rain clouds were hovering and we were convinced that we were going to be interrupted by the weather very soon.
“Oh ye of little faith” I pronounced & sure enough, after 17 drops of rain the weather cleared and we continued, although the humidity was extremely high making the going tough for some (myself in particular). An unfortunate incident on the fairway of A9 caused me to have a change of caddy at the half way mark after she was hit in the knee by an errant golf ball from one of our group and reinforced the need for players to keep behind the golfer who is playing the shot. I should have known better!
We slowed down somewhat during the second nine and, mainly due to the conditions and the fact that we were playing stroke and the round was completed in the much slower than normal time of four hours & forty five minutes. It had been an eventful and enjoyable round of golf with good company on a golf course that is in excellent condition.
In addition to the Monthly Mug Winner we were able to have 2 Grades with three 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 A9 & C9 greens.
Kev Waycott has been playing with us more frequently over the past few weeks so it was great to see him take out this month’s Mug with a fine score of net 69. The winner of A Grade was last month’s Mug winner Paul “Hacky” Hack who had a net 71 with Alain “Inspector Clouseau” Taddei finishing second with net 74. Newcomer Mark West rounded off the A Grade podium with his net 76.
Max “Corsets” Bracegirdle was a clear winner in the B Grade with a creditable net 72, a huge 8 shots better than Geri Crilly in second spot and the flabbergasted Sandy “Leiperfrog” Leiper humbly accepted his reward for third place after his net 86.
1st Kevin Waycott (10) net 69
A Flight (0-18)
1st Paul Hack (11) net 71
2nd Alain Taddei (16) net 74
3rd Mark West (15) net 76
B Flight (19+)
1st Max Bracegirdle (27) net 72
2nd Geri Crilly (27) net 80
3rd Sandy Leiper (34) net 86
Near Pins: A3 – Peter Blackburn, A5 – Takeshi Hakozaki, C3 – Paul Hack, C8 – Kevin Waycott
Long Putts: A9 – Paul Hack, C9 – Kevin Waycott
The Growling Swan NAGA Award was won by the Wes Starr who humbly accepted the honour and wore the cap briefly in the bar. Max Bracegirdle kindly took Deefa for the usual walk and collected many donations for the needy in Pattaya from our ever generous Growling Swan golfers.
Note: Growling Swan Golf, the home of friendly golf in Pattaya 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 am with transport departing at 8.30 am. For bookings or more information please contact Peter on 0806 351 386 or email to [email protected]