Junior golf stars reflect on year to savour at Bognor

Andrew Field presents the trophy to Joe Flood
Andrew Field presents the trophy to Joe Flood

Bognor Golf Club juniors’ final event of 2018 preceded the annual dinner and prizegiving evening.

The Citeog trophy is a held over ten holes with players only allowed three clubs and a putter to play with. The weather did its best to deter the large field for this event, in which ages ranging from nine to 17.

Ron Hendricks presents the Order of Merit prize to Harry Malin

Ron Hendricks presents the Order of Merit prize to Harry Malin

The nearest-the-pin prize was won by Harry Isham, which also meant he took the pinseeker of the year award for the most nearest-pin wins over the season. He claimed his awards that evening.

The Citeog was a close affair with Jake Stoneham scoring a creditable 19 points. Winner for the second time this year was Joe Flood with 21 points, off his newly achieved handicap of 28. He will be one to watch in 2019.

That evening saw juniors, parents, club captain, ladies’ captain, club president and sponsors get together for a fantastic dinner with carvery and all the trimmings.

The evening also featured the main prizegiving, with all the trophies presented to winners throughout the year.

The final two trophies of the year were awarded for the performances over the course of the year. The first, the order of merit, was won by Harry Malin, who defended his title narrowly from Harry Isham by ten points. The trophy and voucher were presented to Harry by Ron Hendrick, who sponsors the event.

The final award of the evening is for the most improved player of the year, this year Joe Flood, who gained his handicap, starting at 28, and won two events.

The evening was rounded of by a large raffle.

* More than 70 men turned out on a cold, damp Sunday morning for a four-ball better-ball competition – and congratulations go to Neil Martel and Simon Gear for winning with an excellent 45 points.

Willie Dunn and Andy Wallhead came second with 44, beating Shaun Maskell and Ryan Maskell on countback.

Bognor Seniors

In 2018 Bognor seniors’ committee organised 20 internal competitions.

Four were Fletcher days, eight were seniors’ midweek Stablefords or medals, there were the three ‘majors’ - the Spring, Autumn, and Captain’s Day trophies – plus a few team and fun games and the increasingly popular Poppy/Inter-Services day.

The section marked their 50th anniversary in September.

Seven of the competitions had shotgun starts, followed by sumptuous buffets, with player entries in the 80’ to 100-plus.

They raised £248 for the Royal British Legion, a record to date, and thanks went to committee member David Chalmers for the collection.

After the success of the Bognor club’s 125th anniversary in 2017, past captain Kevin Holland sponsored a new seniors’ competition, a four-ball better-ball, which was so successful it’s now a permanent addition to the seniors’ diary.

It’s an absolute privilege to state that participation in these internals has grown from 685 players in 2015 to 1,130 in 2018, a growth of 65 per cent.

Congratulations to all participating and particularly to the committee in organising such a varied programme.

On top of the internals the seniors also participated in 36 club matches, home and away to local clubs. They managed to do the double over Worthing again, no mean feat, and also had new fixtures against Lee-on-the-Solent and West Hove.

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Many thanks went to David Turner, the match manager, in arranging all the matches and picking the team for each one. Bognor’s record was 15 wins, six draws and 15 defeats, the best set of results in the past five years.

Every few years, the seniors’ committee goes through a period of change and seniors captain Mike Oates now stands aside to be succeeded by Terry Kuhler.

They also welcome two new members to the committee, Roy Kempson (2019 vice-captain) and Dave Standing, both relatively new club members who have thoroughly enjoyed the seniors programme and are keen to help keep it going.

Chris Hickling, past club and senior captain, is now the seniors’ secretary and he does a magnificent job in organising the senior open which over the past three years has gone up from 60 visitors to 96 in 2018 – and all thoroughly enjoyed their time.

The section have more entries to date for the 2019 open than they’ve ever had before.

Senior treasurer Barry Ingate does a grand job managing the finances from the matches, games and committee member Richard Kaemena takes control of the fun games and managed to get 80 seniors to enjoy some Italian food after one of the competitions – one of the truly remarkable sites of the year.

The year finished with a Christmas dinner dance. The seniors are looking forward to 2019, with their season starting in March.