Dartmoor distress for the Sidmouth seniors


*********** - Credit: Archant

On Friday last week Sidmouth seniors’ team visited Teign Valley, a course which lies below three reservoirs on the edge of Dartmoor, writes Charles Oram.

In Sidmouth we are inured to soggy conditions, but the standing water on the fairways and in the bunkers at Teign Valley was nevertheless a surprise.

Captain for the day, Nigel Sharp, made the same basic error as his counterpart Olazabal in the Ryder Cup: he forgot to check that all his players were familiar with the correct time zone when playing away from home!

In Medinah, Rory McIlroy made it to the course just in time, courtesy of a police escort. Unfortunately, Sidmouth golfer Hugh Dorliac failed to arrive to support his captain in the first match. Hastily promoting David Roberts to partner him, Sharp teed off at the appointed time. In all the circumstances, the Sidmouth pair did well to reach the 10th tee with the scores level, but lost 5 and 4.

Terry Carter, enjoying his retirement from reporting duties, partnered the in-form Paul Blay in the second match and it was a surprise when they lost 6 and 5.

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Les Pratt had figured heroically in the previous day’s victory over Honiton and he had sufficient energy left to play with Vernon Ruffle in the third match.

With Ruffle taking advantage of strokes received it was a close-run encounter, but the away side prevailed 2 and 1.

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The two Bobs, Winstone and Cook, restored Sidmouth pride, winning 4 up after 15 holes, but soon Teign Valley had ensured overall victory when Colin Mitchell and Terry Blackler were defeated 5 and 3.

Even without a police escort, Hugh Dorliac arrived in time to partner last year’s captain, John Bainbridge, in the final match.

In a tight contest they lost on the final hole, to give Teign Valley a 5-1 triumph.

Not so much ‘Miracle at Medinah’, more like ‘Distress in Dartmoor!’

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