Our Championship Finals concluded over the weekend and the first of the action took place on Friday evening with the Ladies Scratch and Handicap competitions kicking off an action packed couple of days for the Finalists.
Congratulations and a huge well done on a long awaited victory to Aileen Kennedy in winning the Scratch Trophy for the first time in 19 years beating multiple champion Jennifer Bryans on the final hole.
Hazel Deerness won the Handicap Trophy beating Cynthia Tuckerman. Well done to all finalists.
Sheila McEwan reported full details of how the action unfolded on the web site yesterday, thank you Sheila for all your help this week in keeping everyone up to date with the Ladies competitions.
The Gents Finals were played on Saturday and it was great to see a decent number of fellow players and family members on the course giving their support to the occasion, which I know the players really appreciated.
I have to start with the main event, as it really was a unique family occasion. It was nephew Chris Curran up against his uncle, Sid Curran in the Championship Final.
Chris’s Dad Kevin was on the bag, and it was also great to see brother Mick rush down from Aberfeldy breaking up a holiday to give support.
With the clan all decked in their familiar green attire (wonder why!!) the game started in real explosive style with both players showing intent by birdieing the first hole.
Sid took the lead at the second hole after Chris was in trouble in the trees to the left of the green taking full advantage, however Chris bagged birdie number two at the 4th to go all square.
A win with par at the testing 5th and another birdie at six gave Chris a two-hole advantage.
Sid found trouble at seven with a poor second shot and a high bounce on eight took his drive into the trees on the right which led to Chris increasing his lead to go 4up.
However, Sid rallied at the ninth with a fantastic second shot to the green which was too good for Chris reducing the lead to three at the turn. The pair shared 5 birdies in the front nine.
The golf in the front nine was very impressive but it was nothing compared to what was to follow.
After a half in par at the tenth Chris bagged another birdie win at the 11th and an amazing recovery by Sid to birdie twelve got him a fighting half as Chris notched yet another birdie.
With Chris now 4 up again both players traded halves at thirteen and fourteen the game went to another level in the final few holes down the stretch.
Both drained long putts for birdie twos at 15, Chris got yet another birdie at 16 to take his lead to 5 holes. he birdies again at seventeen to win the hole after Sid was in trouble in the trees and in a fitting end to the morning’s golf both players birdied the last. We watched an incredible thirteen birdies between them, with Chris bagging eight and Sid five.
I am not sure Sid would have ever been in a position of scoring five birdies in a round and finding himself being six down – absolutely outstanding round of golf by Chris – achieving another mid 60’s round this season!!
It was more of the same in the afternoon, Chris always having too much in the bag for Sid and he ran out a comfortable and very worthy Champion. It was a fantastic exhibition of golf by Chris and Sid played his part. Well done both players on a great day for the family and overcoming some close encounters during the week.
The B Class Championship Final was contested between Allan Maxwell and John Kerr, both worthy finalists after a brilliant week’s golf.
Both started well with opening pars but it was Allan who drew first blood at the second to go 1 up, again in par.
Both players continued to the bridge with decent golf and Allan retained his narrow lead playing the opening four holes in level par.
John brought the game level at the 5th but an unlucky clip of an overhanging tree at six handed the lead back to Allan again.
Once again John responded, winning the seventh after a poor drive by Allan allowed him to take advantage.
Allan won nine and edged into the lead again at the turn only to see John birdie the tenth, finally holing a putt and bringing this closely fought encounter back to level.
John’s loose drive at eleven and Allan’s three putt on twelve kept the game all square going into the final stretch.
Allan hit a wonderful tee shot close at the par 3 13th holing for a well-deserved birdie to go in front for the fifth time in the match… could he finally break John’s resolve ?
Yes he could, a solid par at fourteen with John in trouble followed by a disappointing three putt at fifteen saw Allan move closer to victory going dormie three and with his best drive of the year and an approach to ten feet he closed out the game at sixteen with John conceding after a wide second shot.
Allan was a deserving winner. He played consistently well all week and was just too good for his opponents throughout. Congratulations to John who can be proud of his efforts in a tough week of golf and it was a nice gesture from Chris Curran, having just won his match, to walk out to the game behind and take the bag for John for the remaining holes.
The C Class Championship Final was contested between Rob Smart and Stephen Burns.
Both players shared the opener to settle any nerves but it was Rob who quickly set the tone of the game going par at two, birdie at the third from six feet and a solid par at the fourth to win three of the first four holes.
Stephen halted Rob’s momentum sharing halves at five and six and with a lost ball at the seventh for Rob, this gave Stephen the chance to reduce the match back to two holes.
However Rob regained the initiative at holes eight and nine and reached the turn 4up.
Stephen won the 10th as Rob conceded but a poor eleventh saw Rob restore his four-hole advantage again and a solid par at twelve saw Rob move his lead to five.
Rob made a mess of the tricky thirteenth to give Stephen a lifeline which he grabbed and a fighting five at the 14th reduced the deficit down to three with four holes to play.
Both players missed the green at fifteen but Rob held his nerve and recovered best to win the hole and the match 4&3. Well done Rob.
Congratulations to both for a very sporting Final and huge credit for their performances throughout the week.
…and so a fantastic Championship week comes to an end and it is only fitting that as well as all the qualifiers, finalists and winners a number of people “ behind the scenes” deserve a huge thanks for making it such a successful week for the Club.
Firstly, to Scott and his green-keeping team for preparing the course in readiness for our Championship week. With a greens team member having to isolate due to Covid 19, a rally call for support was answered very quickly by a group of willing volunteers who gave their help around the course last week. Huge thanks to Neil Rennie, Jim McEwan, Ian Ormiston, Alan Rome and Alan Carlyon. The course is looking great, well done all.
Thanks to all the folks who “caddied” this week – great job!
Thanks to everyone involved in the various communication channels keeping members and friends updated on the “live” action as it happened during the week on WhatsApp and at the weekend on Facebook – brilliant fun initiative and brings a real sense of camaraderie and team spirit to the week.
Thanks to our professional photographers Peter Baird and Jim Reid for giving up their time to take great action shots during the week and on Finals Day and to the other members who did similar to provide fantastic moments for the players.
Thanks to Colin and Craig for setting up the back office competition draws and swift communication under tight time constraints during the week.
Finally, thanks to Louise for posting up the stories and pics as the rounds were played out and to everyone providing narrative throughout the week, really appreciated and to the many others who made the week such a special event for the players.
Great team effort all week, hope everyone involved enjoyed it as much as I did.