Excellent contest on Forbes golf course

Fab Four: Alby Callaghan, Graham Newport, Andrew Drane and Geoff Drane are all smiles after their good rounds.
Fab Four: Alby Callaghan, Graham Newport, Andrew Drane and Geoff Drane are all smiles after their good rounds.

Betland and Howe Slay the Field

A fantastic weekend weather forecast put the Forbes golfers into a mindset to excel. This they generally did, even encouraging many of the visitors to score well. But nothing could sway the dynamic of all the scorers across the weekend.

Saturday's competition was play for the Hawke Trophy, a 4BBB Stableford Medley event. While the Easter weekend may have taken a few players away, a strong field of 60 players were keen to get their hands on the trophy.

Being a Medley event there were pairings comprising men, ladies and mixed competitors. Across this mix of pairings there was a great range of scores. But none could contend with the way that Steve Betland and Troy Howe pounded the course and thus slay the field in total.

Steve and Troy teed off at the end of the field, usurping the spot commonly taken by Marty Cahill, Phil Maher and others. They were in company with, and probably inspired by, Pro Adrien Lees. Adrien used a borrowed set of clubs, on which in his view he was using the previously unused sweet spot in the centre. He passes thanks to Head Pro Ben for the use of his clubs.

It is very hard for low-handicappers to score well, so Steve relied on the timely efforts of Troy Howe to keep the score moving. Each of Troy's contributions, bar one, were three-pointers, leaving Steve to record two and three-pointers. Interestingly, Steve and Adrien did not do as good, carding a few one-pointers on the back-nine.

Runners-up were early morning players Paul Pymont and Richard Smith. They got into the clubhouse early with a very good 46 points. But as the day progressed this seemed to be a 'ho hum' score, as five teams finished with that. However, the count-back went to Paul and Richard.

The ball sweep went to 45-points on count back: 49 - S Betland/ T Howe; 46 - P Pymont/ R Smith, C Kelly (P)/ M Green (P), F Hanns/ L LittleS and K Harrold (Shelly Beach), S Hayes/ S Grant (Murrumbidgee); 45 - G and A Drane, A Callaghan/ G Newport.

The NTP's went to: ninth - Ladies: E Coombs; Men: A Davies; 18th - Ladies - Nil; Men - P Dawson. There were eight twos scored, and none by the NTP'ers, with a fine effort by Herbert/Kirkman to get twos on each of the third and ninth holes.

There was a good number of visitors in the field, including Parkes (C Kelly, M Green, P Dixon), Sally and Kev Harrold from Shelly Beach, Stuart Hayes and Stephen Grant (both from Murrumbidgee), Howard Bellamy (Lakelands), and Andrew Drane (Gosford). Pleasing to see Brad Ashton back on the course, and of course Adrien Lees, registered at Gardiners Run but of course a Forbes player now.

Not too many stories this week, but a couple of items need exposure. It was interesting as we travelled around the course to hear the many times a golf ball struck a tree. But there was another interesting sound among those.

Jeff Haley was playing the seventh, and unfortunately dragged his ball towards the OB fence. Arriving at his ball he had a dilemma, as being left-handed he could not get a clean swing. So he played right-handed, using a club upside-down. He connected well, shooting the ball along the fence line whence it struck a star picket and rebounded into the fairway. It was a strange sound with a good result.

And your friends can be troublesome at times. During the presentation, Ecky Dawson owned up to not actually getting the NTP on the 18th. He explained that it was actually Shane Sallaway's shot, but Ecky took the glory instead. I shall leave those two to sort it out.

There was a fair bit of golf played on the weekend, so here is a summary of the results.

Easter Friday was a Stableford Medley with 20 participants, including visitors - Stuart Hayes, Steven Grant, Mike Hodgett (Long Reef), Jack Downes (Moree)

The winner was Shane Sallaway with 39 points, nicely ahead of Stephen Grant (Murrumbidgee) with 37 points on count back. These two did okay on the day, as you shall see.

The ball sweep went to 37, going to: 37 - S French, G Falvey and B Slack-Smith. The NTP's went to: ninth - S Sallaway; 18th - S Grant. Most players did okay, but some were a bit off form.

On Sunday there was originally scheduled a 27 hole two person Ambrose Medley, but with low numbers this event has been deferred and was replaced by a Stableford Medley, contested by a field of nine players. No doubt others were enjoying their chocolate Easter goodies.

The winner was Dave Mylecharane with a good 40 points. He was a couple ahead of Ethel Coombs on 38 points on count back, and who improved markedly from Friday's result.

The ball sweep went to 38 points, going to Ash Tucker. The NTP's went to: ninth - A Tucker; 18th - P Dawson. And it was Ecky Dawson this time!

Easter Monday also had a Stableford Medley, with a good group out to work off their Easter goodies.

The winner was Nick Ryan with 41 points, and a thoroughly enjoyable time it was too. The Runner-up was Ecky Dawson with 40 points. Ecky scored better on the front-9 than the back, even though he was tidier there. But then, Nick had a miss and a few 1-pointers so he could easily have been further ahead.

These two had a good jump on the field, with the ball sweep going down to 35 points on count back: 41 - N Ryan; 40 - P Dawson; 39 - T Cogswell; 36 - G Webb, P Tisdell; 35 - D Rhodes, A Dukes. Andrew also cleaned up on the NTP's, snaring both the 9th and 18th prizes.

Here is the News

The Easter weekend was a busy period for many people, with lots of golf, the Camel races and family activities. And it is going to be a busy period coming up for the golfers.

The 27-hole Mixed Foursomes are scheduled for Sunday, April 28 having been shifted from its original date in May. Although it is the last weekend in the school holidays we hope there will be a good field.

The 27-Hole 2P Ambrose Medley, postponed from Easter Sunday, has a good sponsorship package, so we want to ensure we get good support for it. We shall look at the Programme to see where else it can be fitted in, but when it arrives please give it your best support.

The start of the Wallace Cup has been delayed because there is currently a lack of numbers. Please get your name into the Pro Shop or Captain Steve as soon as you can.

A reminder to the Tuesday Golfers that as daylight saving has finished the start times have been altered, so you can sleep in a bit. Now players are requested to gather at 9am for a 9:30am start. You will still be home for a good lunch.

The Winter 3's competition will be on soon, but get your team names in the the Pro Shop asap. Do not forget that the Forbes Men's Open will now be held on the weekend of May 18-19 and not the May 11-12.

Crystal Ball Time

Saturday, April 27 has an 18-hole Stroke, sponsored by LINX. Sunday has the 27-hole Mixed Foursomes Championships. Saturday, May 4 is the Monthly Medal, sponsored by Adept Plumbing. Sunday will be closed on May 5 for the Forbes Ladies Open.

Short Putt

Ladies Golf

On Saturday, April 13 Barb Drabsch won the Metro Hair Stableford Competition with Jenny Fletcher NTP on ninth and Judy Hodge on 18th.

On Monday, April 15 our Pennants team comprising of Heather Davidson, Debbie Dingwall, Kerry Stirling, Sally Perry and Ev Uphill headed to Canowindrato take on a tricky course.

After extra holes needed to split the teams Canowindra came out on top, thank you girls for representingForbes.

Last Wednesday, April 17 an 18 Hole Stableford Sponsored by McFeeters Car Museum was played. Winner of Division One was S. Crosby (38) and J Hurkett (35) the runner up.

Division 2 winner was Jean Judge (35) and runner up Helen Duff (34) on a count-back. Ball Sweep to J Hurkett, H Duff, S Perry and E Coombs. Nearest the pin ninth E Baker and 18th J Hurkett.

On Wednesday, May 1 will be a stroke and third round golf NSW Medal, Monthly Medal and Putting Comp with Denise on cards.

Coming up on May 4-5 is our Open Tournament which attracts golfers from far and wide and by far the most important weekend of the year for the Lady golfers of Forbes.

Hope everyone enjoyed their Easter break and your reporter will back on track for the regular Friday editions of the Advocate.

Roving Reporter