By Short Putt
The Forbes golfers were exalted to be able to forge across 18 holes, and in their quest they mostly disregarded the mozzie attacks. It was also the first chance for the Men's competition to be able to conduct the 'medal of Medallists', awarded to the best of the Medallists who contested on the day.
In a contest befitting 'the best of the best' the winner was decided on count back, with Tony Cogswell declared the winner ahead of Peter Cowhan after both finished on nett 69.
Tony thought he had blown his chances with an untimely large score on the 7th, but Peter missed a few opportunities with the putter that would have seen him clear.
Only six of the eligible Medal winners were not able to participate, thus ensuring there were some big guns in contention. Barry Parker (70) was the closest of the eligible chasers, with Peter Dawson, Ken Sanderson, Bruce Squires close behind on nett 71.
The Saturday Men's comp was also the December Monthly Medal, sponsored by Nutrien Ag Solutions, postponed from last weekend because the full course was not available. Many players who did not have the pressure of the 'MoM' enjoyed themselves as the scores would indicate.
The A-Grade was a tight tussle, also requiring a count back. Phil Duke and Kim Herbert both finished on 67 nett, and needed a hole-by-hole decider which went to Phil by the narrowest of margins. His slightly better handicap was the clincher.
The B-Grade was easier to decide with Bruce Chandler the winner having finished on 68 nett, and one shot better than Tony Cogswell on 69. This ensures that Bruce will be in the 'MoM' next year.
Bruce was a bit indifferent on the front-9, but was really focused on the back-9. Tony was more consistent but he also needed some more handicap help.
The C-Grade was both a surprise and a disappointment. It was disappointment for Dave Bernardi who finally managed to meld together the coaching from Head Pro Adam and produce his best score for many months.
As he sat in the Golfie, the grin on his face after posting a nett 70 soon showed disappointment when Steve Grallelis put his card in.
Steve was totally surprised, having missed golf for about five weeks and was not expecting any fireworks but instead enjoyed the company of his playing group rather than worry about his score.
His 66 nett was a clear winner and also the best of the day, culminating in a delicate putt for par on the 18th to square the 'Keno' match.
The ball sweep went to 73 nett on c/b, going to: 68 - P Maher; 69 - G Hooper, J Betland, P Cowhan; 70 - B Carpenter, B Parker; 71 - K Sanderson, T Morgan, P Dawson, B Squires, T Callaghan; 72 - W O'Niell, Alf Davies, L Little, J Cutler, R Nixon; 73 - J LeBrocque and S Hayes. There were two visitors - Start Hayes (Murrumbidgee) and Brad Hazell (Hervey Bay).
The NTP's went to - 9th: K Herbert; 18th: J Betland. John got his 2 but Kim's putt slipped by. The 2's were scarce, with only eight scored and those by the A-graders.
No obvious reason as to why there were so few, other than the putts missed. Once again the early players got on the board with Glen Hooper the first name on the 9th. But he was soon run down.
The 3rd Hole Super Pin went to Todd Callaghan who was very pleased with his shot of 1.7 metres proximity. He easily slotted that for a '2', then started thinking of how he would spend his booty. But he managed to still focus on his game, finishing under par on nett.
As to be expected the conditions were quite difficult at times, and will be a challenge until the water and the fairways dry out. Some players had a range of different difficulties to manage, with water among them.
Jesse Hamilton seemed to have bought a dud bunch of balls, as on every hole where there was water his ball seemed to head straight for it.
He found the water on the 4th, narrowly missed it on the 5th but finished under a bush, headed to the rifle range dam on the 6th, miscued his tee shot into the water at the 9th, luckily avoided the water on the 10th and 13th, and finally flirted with it on the 14th and the 15th.
Another to have water problems was Kim Herbert. On the 5th his drive finished in the penalty area, close to the culvert on the left of the fairway.
It was enticingly sitting in only a modicum of water, and was temptation enough for Kim to try a shot rather than take a penalty stroke.
His awkward stance led to a misshapen swing that connected more with water and mud than it did with the ball.
The ball moved about six inches off the toe of the club, but sat enticingly again. After surveying the muddy splashed socks, legs, shorts and shirt Kim decided to take a penalty drop and save further embarrassment.
Luckily his playing mates caught it all in video so it can be viewed in perpetuity.
Phil Maher played tremendously well all day, and even managed a stupendous eagle on the 15th. His approach shot rolled onto the green and had eyes only for the pin, finishing less than two feet short of the hole, leaving an easy putt.
Phil finished with a nett 68, and was dismayed to see his score relegated to third behind Phil Duke and Kim Herbert.
It is the injustice of golf when a tremendously scintillating performance results in nary a meaningful prize. He shall have to wait another year for such a fine round.
Brian Everest's challenge, shared by his group, was one that is familiar to many. Being a 3-ball they caught the group ahead of them at the 7th tee. That group invited Brian's group to play through.
This resulted in three tee shots going OB, two of which went to one player, and a haltingly progress all the way down the fairway with very little assistance by the trees. Why does it always happen?
Some players were intent on the MoM glory, and cast aside their jocular style of play to put on their serious face. This almost worked for Barry Parker, but Frank Hanns and Les Little were so far out of their normal 'mindset' that they probably tripped themselves up.
Some players had trouble with their shot distance, or more precisely their lack of distance. One player set up for his tee shot on the 2nd, and swung with great lust.
His club head only just nicked the ball, causing it to roll forward a few feet and finish in the down slope of the tee box. His next shot was quite awkward, and resulted in his ball flying OB. His fourth shot from the same spot did find the fairway - just! But Jake did recover well to score a near-par nett round.
Sunday was full of sunshine but quite bereft of Sunday Stableford Medley players. Consequently there are no results to report.
Here is the news:
Head Pro Adam recently had a Mizumo Demo Day. He is planning for early 2022 to have some more demo days with other brands.
If you are keen to try anything then give Adam a call (0433 485846) and let him know what you are interested in.
These are great opportunities to see what the manufacturers are conjuring up to help the club golfer enjoy their game more.
The 2021-22 'Summer Sixes' competition is back into action. Changes to the program include a re-commencement on Monday Jan 3 to enable the comp to finish as planned on March 6, with the finals to finish on April 3.
This will be more than enough time to cement your team as a prime contender for the first prize, the Hunter Valley trip.
The 3-P Ambrose Medley has been postponed to 2022, with the date to be advised later.
It is crystal ball time:
This weekend we have on 18 December an Individual Stableford for the Annual Ham Day. Sun 19 Dec has a Stableford Medley, and will leave enough time to wrap presents.
Stableford Medleys will run through the Christmas/New Year with the January Monthly Medal on 8th Jan. Be of good cheer all.
"Nym (Dziuba) was a standout this year, if not for the one trophy per player rule he would have won the lot," pointscore recorder for the Forbes/Parkes veteran golfers Alf Davies said last Thursday at the end of year Christmas luncheon and awards presentation held at the Forbes Golf Hotel.
Nym, from the Parkes club, was present with the stableford aggregate award from fellow club member Graeme Cooke.
The awards kept flowing for the Parkes club with John Fowler winning the progressive points award from Forbes stalwart Geoff Drane.
Forbes did have further success with Barry Parkes, as expected, winning the attendance award playing 23 out of the 25 scheduled games which were down on previous years due to COVID and wet conditions.
Parkes continued their dominance winning the Twin Towns shield with 3673 stableford points to Forbes' 3756. Over the year 810 games were recorded with Parkes contributing 422 to Forbes' 388.
Play on Thursday was a mystery four-ball where players from both clubs were drawn for partners. Forbes official Alf Davies (35 points) and Parkes' John Dwyer (33) winning with a combined total of 68 points from Ken Sanderson (Forbes) and Richard Hamilton (Parkes) contributing 33 each to their combined total of 66 points.
Nearest the pins, 9th A grade Andrew Grierson (F), B grade Steve Edwards (F), 18th A grade Jeff Haley (F), B grade nil. Ball sweep to 31 points. 36 points Ted Morgan (F), 35 Alf Davies (F), Ross Williams (F), Garry Phillips (P), 34 Peter Barnes (F), Jeff Haley (F), 33 Andrew Grierson (F), Ken Sanderson (F), Richard Hamilton (P), John Dwyer (P), 32 Barry Shine (F), Ken Watts (F), Mick Bond (P), 31 Les Little (F), Niel Duncan (F), Graeme Cooke (P).
Golf today could most likely be the last for the 2021 season with play in Parkes over 18 holes, nominations from 9.30am and tee-off to follow.
Celebrations continued for most Forbes veteran golfers with the Tuesday social club players gathered at the Golf Hotel for their annual Christmas celebrations after play this week.
Organiser Geoff Drane welcomed all followed by a few side-line comments after a highly successful year even allowing for interruptions due to the weather and covid.
Viv Russell made a welcome return to Tuesday golf last week to 'clean-up' after recording 33 stableford points for the 12 hole comp winning from Ken Sanderson on 31 points.
Tuesday golf will be available throughout the festive season with all invited to be at the club from 9am for partners and tee-off after forming a playing group.
For further information on Tuesday golf contacted GD on 0423941159 for details.