Royal British Legion benefit from big day of golf

Winners of the RBL event at Cowdray Park
Winners of the RBL event at Cowdray Park
  • Fund-raising match is success at Cowdray
  • Weather can’t beat Selsey pro-am field
  • Lecturers take on students at Goodwood

For the 4th year running the Park House Hotel and Spa of Bepton was the generous and principle sponsor of the annual Royal British Legion Golf Tournament at the Cowdray Park Golf Club.

This year 24 teams of 3 took part in a Texas Scramble enjoying perfect weather, immaculate fairways and greens and the beautiful views enjoyed by all who play on this course.

The first prize this year was won by Clan Merry, a Rogate based team with Richard Merry, Adrian Price and John Fulford, second was the Park House team of Mark Upton, Mark Jasper and Howard Kasey, third the Kirdford Ramblers with Anthony Gardner, Henry Hofmann and Andrew Jones.

The special prize for the team with all players with a handicap of over 20 was won by Winkworth and finally the prize of a day at the Park House Hotel Spa went to best all ladies team the Lodsworth Ladies

At the prize giving after lunch Brigadier Arthur Douglas-Nugent thanked all those who had played in the tournament, Michael O’Brien for his sponsorship together with all those who had sponsored holes or given prizes and the Cowdray Park Golf Club for inviting us to play and for laying on an excellent luncheon.

The day was greatly enjoyed by all and raised £5800 towards the RBL Poppy Appeal, this would be shared between the three branches of Midhurst, Petworth and Rogate.

A total of 67 Cowdray Park Seniors competed for the Rolland Plate, a medal competition, with the course starting to look back to its best.

They soon realised they were playing for second place when the doyen of the section, Dave Hirons, dispelled the myth he is the unluckiest golfer in the club, returning a superb nett score of 65.

His score was briefly threatened towards the end of the day by the powerfully-hitting Graham Thompson, who managed 67. Jim Booth reproduced his consistency in competitions to snatch third place on countback from Gary Strowbridge and former seniors’ captain Brian Brockhurst, all on 68.

Leading scores: 65 Dave Hirons; 67 Graham Thompson; 68 (in countback order) Jim Booth, Gary Strowbridge, Brian Brockhurst; 69 David Balfour, Mick Fillary, Tony Castley; 70 Wally Mitchell, Mel Milburn, Dave Lucking, Rob Doney, Alan Robinson, John Doran, Mark Kelly.

SELSEY

On a very wet and extremely windy day, the 27th annual pro am was played at Selsey Golf Club.

It was organised by club pro Peter Grindley and secretary Brian Rogers in conjunction with Cliff Pluck, secretary of the Sussex Professional Golfers’ Union.

Some 16 teams took part and there were many prizes from golf bags to golf balls. The winning team with eight under par was PC Petter & Sons, (M Petter, N Lee, C Lang and their professional Harry Pyett from Chichester GC – Pyett played at Selsey as a junior).

Second was Andy Nicholls’ team with seven under (A Nicholls, S Rishman, J Shepherd and professional Charles Giddins from Beauport Park); third with five under were The Winter Niners from the host club (B Rogers, T Conebar, K Fielder and professional Nick George from EuroPro).

Winning pro was Richard Hill from Top Golf with 71; second was Nick George with 73. There were six nearest to the pin prizes and Billy Aspital, 17, the youngest entrant on the day playing for Aspect Electrical, won two of them.

Pictured is the winning team with Craig Newman, the Selsey men’s captain.

Despite the weather, everyone enjoyed the day. Pluck congratulated the greenkeepers for the great condition the golf course was in and said he looked forward to next year’s event.

Selsey’s men played away to Cowdray Park but lost 4-1.

Heavy rain delayed the start of the Elvin Cup. The winners were Alun Morey and Peter Stares. Kevin Fielder and Nick Gunning came second. After the competition, the monthly presentation was held with all the cups and trophies played for in April being presented to the winners.

Simon Brooks, winner of the winter singles knockout, was awarded the Harding Prize, first presented in 1969.

In the monthly medal, the winner in division one was J Wootton with nett 66. The division-two winner was S Rishman with 68.

A Stableford played with three clubs and a putter was won by V Wade with 41points. Second was W Daniels with 40.

GOODWOOD

A ROUND of golf with nothing to win but bragging rights has been played between students and lecturers from the University of Chichester.

It took place on the Downs course at Goodwood to offer the under-graduates a chance to get one up on their tutors.

The 18-hole game, which is held each year, saw seven students of the university’s mixed golf first team face five lecturers from the Institute of Sport. It was organised in part by Sam Southon, vice-president of the student-led team and a competitor of nearly ten years.

The sports and fitness management final-year student said: “This was a chance to get one-up on our lecturers and, fortunately, we did exactly that by beating them by three points.

“We organise the match each year, although this was the first time we competed as the University’s official mixed golf first team, and were able to provide a few prizes for the victors.”

The winning game marked the end of a successful season for the student club, having finished second in the British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) league competition.

The team, which is based at Goodwood golf course, is led by vice-captain Southon, who has a handicap of just five, and captain Craig Alford, who is part of the England set-up.

Paul Robinson, a senior lecturer in sports coaching science from the university’s Department of Sport and Exercise Sciences, was on the losing side.

He said: “We arrange the match each year to enrich the student’s experience of studying at Chichester, and it also follows on from our agreement to provide science support services for Goodwood’s academy golfers.

“Student satisfaction is incredibly important to us, and the game provides an opportunity to engage with the undergraduates – although we were a bit unlucky this year to lose.”

To find out more about the range of undergraduate sports degrees offered at the University of Chichester visit www.chi.ac.uk/chichester-institute-sport.

Goodwood’s Darren Wright carded a level-par closing round to win the HotelPlannner.com PGA EuroPro Tour’s Kerry London Championship at the Burhill Golf Club in Surrey. Wright finished one stroke ahead of Ireland’s Alan Dunbar.

Wright, who became a Golf At Goodwood Ambassador earlier this year, led by two at the halfway stage and in the early stages of the final round the advantage was as five shots.

A series of dropped shots left Wright as joint leader as he made the turn but a composed back nine saw the former Hampshire amateur tee-off down the 18th with a one-shot advantage.

With playing partner Alan Dunbar managing only par, Wright was left to hole out for his par to collect the trophy, a cheque for £10,000 and a number of other prizes.

“I was pretty confident at the start of the day,” said Wright. “I have been playing really good golf and making a lot of birdies, the odd eagle, and have been putting really well this week. On these greens, they are such a pure surface, if you get it starting on line you have a good chance to hole some putts.”

Wright, who won at Royal Ashdown Forest Golf Club in April, has put his recent success down to his improved preparation.

“I’ve been hitting a few buckets of balls a night at the academy and made good use of the chipping area on the Downs course at Goodwood. It’s a great place to stick your iPod in, get into a relaxed calm environment and just chip and putt for hours until the sun goes down.”

COUNTY SCENE

As is tradition after the county championship, the Sussex ladies’ golf team for 2015 was announced by county captain Sue Todd.

The team will compete against Surrey, Hampshire, Kent and Middlesex with the winning team going on to represent the south region in the national finals later in the year. This year Sussex are hosting the event at Worthing Golf Club.

This season sees the first year of the new order of merit selection which provides a clear way to identify the most successful and committed golfers, with points for competitive results in different events combined with a range of qualification criteria. The first six places in the county squad were awarded to the top OOM players, with four places down to Captain’s Pick by the selection committee.

This year’s team includes two juniors, Jelina Fernando and Penny Brown. Brown was recently crowned junior county champion, and she and Sophie Kennard are the two rookies who join this highly experienced team.

Team: Chelsea Masters (Highwoods); Katherine Russell (Royal Ashdown Forest); Penny Brown (Worthing); Jelina Fernando (East Sussex National); Alice Barnes (West Sussex); Sophie Kennard (Dyke); Paula Carver (Worthing); Karen Sykes (Worthing); Aileen Greenfield (Pyecombe); Chloe Court (Bognors)

Having prepared throughout the winter with practice rounds, coaching and development, the team are looking forward to putting all their hard work to good effect.

BOGNOR

Bognor’s scratch team pulled off a remarkable comeback to beat a strong Crowborough Beacon side whose combined handicap was just six – after being 4-0 down at lunch.

The mood in the Bognor team was still positive despite the interval deficit.

First out at 4-0 down was captain Andy Brown who recorded an excellent 5&4 victory. Jordan Vincent followed that with a fine 3&2 win. Tom Stoneham’s solid round was not enought to stave off a 3&2 defeat by a very impressive Sussex player.

James Maclean was one down with two holes to play but recovered and rolled in a 6ft putt to win the game. This was a massive turning point and gave Bognor real momentum.

Olly Longlands put in another impressive display and a solid par on the 17th gave him a 2&1 victory. Henry Leo continued his good form of late with a confident win on the 16th green. At this point the score was 5-5.

Young Jake Stoneham was facing a Sussex first-team player but by the time he had reached the 15th green, he had sealed the victory.

It was 6-5 to Bognor, meaning Liam Maskell needed only a half from his match. He and his opponent headed to the 18th tee all square with every player and supporter from both teams watching.

Maskell ended up having the chance to clinch the team victory within two shots from 15ft. He rolled the putt very sensibly up to the hole where it was conceded and Bognor had done it - 6½ -5½ winners.

Bognor host current champions Worthing on July 18.

Bognor men teed off in rain and gales in a four-man team event using three clubs and a putter. The winners with 103 points were Andrew Field, Mick Martin, Miller Stevenson and Alan Simmonds. Second were Gary Embleton, Mark Bingham, Sam Grover and Dave Grover. John Sullivan had a hole in one on the fifth hole.

Bognor staged the junior Overton Salver competition, in which teams of four from Bognor, Worthing, Ham Manor, West Sussex, West Chiltington and Goodwood played a medal round with the three best scores counting. It was sponsored by Bailiffscourt Hotel, who also donated all the salvers.

Winners with a score of 208 were Worthing – Connor Johnson, Sam Hyde, Daniel Sykes and Deglan Johnson. Bognor took second place with 215. Their team comprised Ryan Maskell, Jake Stoneham, James Woosley and Harry Isham.

The players had to play in 40mph winds and torrential rain but still produced some excellent scores.

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