I am not sure what was the most threatening to the golf game on Saturday, whether it be the strong, cold, biting, wind or the threat of the magpie swoop.
Yes, the wind went straight through you and I admire the golfers that could shoot a straight ball into that wind. But shoot them straight, some of them did. But the magpie threat? Well, it seemed that they hadn’t picked their victims at that point in time – maybe I was to be the only one to suffer the swoop.
On Friday Dino and myself walked down the ninth and had to use pine branch switches to get back to the clubhouse, so bad was the swooping.
The captain had missed the first swoop of the season and asked me to retrace my steps so he could see what had happened. Even worse. He had a laugh anyway!
Then on Saturday I was chatting to Tony Ridge on the eighteenth when ‘swoop’, Tony said “ He almost got you”. But not one golfer was in the line of fire – but, I guess, give them time.
Channel Nine had a section Saturday morning saying that the magpie swoop is early this year – yes, thank you, I know.
So if you are walking around the golf course or playing golf please be wary of the dreaded swoop, they are dangerous.
But, back to golf. The Canadian Foursomes, not a game too dear to everyone’s heart. As you can guess groups of four take to the course, in pairs. Hits are taken in turns.
Talking to some of the players after the game, they were saying how the game plays with your mind.
For a start you don’t want to let your playing partner down and secondly, you try so hard to put the ball in the spot that is advantageous to your team mate.
For example if your partner is a better chipper than yourself, you would try to get the ball in that spot that would enable him to chip on or even in.
It is a game of constant thinking and yes, as they said, it plays with your mind.
It was interesting who teamed with who on Saturday, not always the one that one would have played with on an ordinary Saturday.
Sometimes the strategic thinking came into it. But the fact that Wayne Forrest and Jayson Meyers had teamed together was no real surprise.
A couple of the club’s best players, they certainly showed their mettle on Saturday.
Best off the stick went to these two, both in fine form.
They had played the course with a one under in the front nine and one over for the back nine.
In the conditions of Saturday it was a great play. The pair had pared every hole over the front nine, apart from the fifth, which they had birdied.
Come the back nine and there had been three holes with one over but the two birdies brought the nine back to one over.
This was a fabulous outcome for the boys, having pared the course in those conditions.
Forrest had a good day, which is nothing unusual, picking up the nearest the pin on fourteen and the long drive in A Grade.
Another good performance came from the combination of Stuart Thorpe and Tim Bessen, having played well enough to grab the handicap’s prize for the day.
They had shot a merged score of eighty three and with their combined handicap of twenty, this had given them a sixty three net. Not too shabby at all. Bessen also picked up the Long Drive for B Grade and Thorpe took out the C Grade long drive.
With those sort of drives taking place at the tee block, is it no wonder that they had scored well on entering the clubhouse.
A little way down on the score chart had been Mark Malcolm and Phil Bickley who had shot a sixty seven between them.
Bickley had been quite happy to be sitting in the clubhouse, soaking up the sun through the window, just hoping that there had been no group that had been one short of a player.
Lo and behold Mark Malcolm stuck his head in asked Bickley if he had a game. And that was that! So three balls later Bickley and Malcolm found themselves on top of the ball winners’ list – just.
On a count out Matt Kennedy and Tony Minerds, with sixty seven also, had slipped that one place down on the winner’s list. Mark Malcolm did put his mark on ten though with a nearest the pin.
Dad and son team, Brian and David Key had played an even game with forty on the front nine and forty one on the back nine, giving them a net score of sixty nine.
Watching for the magpies, as he had been a subject of viciousness in previous times, Roger Kirchner had teamed with Gary Ryan for a tough game in the elements of nature.
But Kirchner had been safe and with a score of thirty nine on both the front and back nine, the pair had found themselves just creeping in on the ball winner’s list for the day.
Flicking through the cards – unbelievable – there was Tony Ridge and Russell Sard on the bottom of the pack – really? But Ridge did have a win on sixteen, taking home the NTP. It was a hard day for golf, but that’s golf- always a challenge.
Next week is the Steve Eberhard Memorial Day, a stroke play.
Until then, happy golfing!