Cowdray Park seniors held the first of their two Texas scrambles under cloudy skies with a stiff breeze blowing.
Although it felt cold with the wind chill factor, the greens and fairways were more receptive than recently.
Seventeen teams of four took part, with organiser Dave Hirons trying his best to link up players according to their handicaps.
One of the early-starting teams featured seniors’ captain Allen Sibley, Bill Brownlee, Clive Brine and former club captain Harvey Terry, who was a last-minute replacement for the injured Mike Pratt.
The inspired putting of Terry gave his team the early lead and eventually first prize with a score of 61.9.
Immediately behind this group came the potentially-challenging group of two former seniors’ captains David Tilley and Peter Burton, plus Gary Strowbridge and recent Stableford winner Tony Castley. They recorded a fine score of 62.4 but were left rueing three putts which lipped out.
They waited in anticipation of claiming second prize, but their hopes were dashed by the final group out, who returned with 62.1.
This group comprised former club captain and new senior Dave Balfour, Graham Sutton, also new to the Seniors, Terry Jasper and Chris Hoare.
As captain Allen Sibley was part of the winning team, it fell to vice-captain Brian Brockhurst to undertake his first duty as vice-captain and present the prizes to the winners and runners-up.
The event was superbly organised by Hirons.
Cowdray Park missed the opportunity to close the gap on leaders Hankley Common and Farnham, and enhance their own title claims in the Surrey and West Sussex Winter League, when they were held to a 2-2 draw at home by Hindhead.
This was a repeat of the result at Hindhead in December.
Team captain Dave Hirons and partner David Tilley set the ball rolling with a close-fought win by one up. This was immediately followed by a 6&5 win from Mark Upton and Mike Purdie to give the home side a 2-0 lead.
Hindhead fought back and won the final two matches 2&1 and 3&2 to level the match.
Leaders Hankley Common have completed their fixtures with a points total of 24, followed by Farnham with 22 points and three games to play.
In third place, Cowdray Park have 20 points also with three games to play. Champions Puttenham are fourth with 18.5 points and four games left so a nail-biting finish looks to be in store.
After an extremely wet and cold winter, what could be a better way to start the golfing season than with a nine-hole competition and a three-course spring lunch? The veterans’ section at Selsey GC (pictured at the top of this article) did just that.
The nine-hole competition, divided into three divisions, was won in division one by Robert Miles on 17 points on countback from Doug Muncey.
Division-two winner was Gerry Hollands with 16 points on countback from Maurice Mesure, also with 16. Division-three winner and overall winner of the competition was Reg Ewens with 19 points. Second in division three was Brian Mariner with 16 points.
It was a cold day, but the 41 players soon warmed up in the clubhouse and sat down to an excellent lunch provided by club caterer Julie Conebar.
Bognor seniors finally managed to play their twice-postponed winter match against Petersfield in conditions to make a brass monkey wince.
The Bognor course had dramatically transformed thanks to a week of dry weather and the efforts by the groundstaff. Despite the bitter cold, both sides managed some formidable golf in a 4-4 draw.
Two Bognor pairs - David Turner, the seniors’ captain for this year, with Mike Wadley, and Trevor Till and Alistair MacDonald, won 5&4.
Other scores: F Hodder & J Woodhead halved, M Oates & C Hickling lost 3&1, G Steventon & R Hedge won 4&3, C Millett & A Fitzgerald halved, H Diaper & J King lost 1 down, D Burke & V Ward lost 5&4.
The Bognor seniors first Stableford of 2013 gets under way next week with the Tommy Thompson Trophy, in honour of the club’s latest centenarian, the prize. It would appear there will be at least 62 entrants.
The first match of the seniors’ summer campaign of 36 home and away games is a trip to Waterlooville on March 18, followed in early April with a keenly-anticipated visit from Royal Winchester.
Twenty-four pairs took part in the ladies’ ELGA greensomes competition. The winners were Sally Cameron and Kim Mercer with 45 points. Christine Puddicombe and June Smith were second with 43, while third were Margaret Flynn and Eileen Morris with 42 on countback from Penny Entecott and Jill Gill.
On a bright and sunny morning, 31 from Chichester’s ladies’ section played a qualifying Stableford competition.
Winner was Amanda McKenzie with 36 points, ahead of Helen Ball on 32, on countback from Erica Elliott.
The midweek roll up was won by Carl Corbin with 40 points.
Chris May’s 60th birthday bash featured a competition involving 60 players. The winner with 42 points was Mark Heron, ahead of Lloyd Walker with 41 and Grant Walker with 38.
The club monthly medal was won in division one by R Kuszka with a nett 68 and in division two by Glyn Davies with 61.
The senior monthly medal was won in division one by Martin Crick with a nett 65 and in division two by Brian Comber with 69.