Seniors don their bobble hats

Teignmouth 5�, Sidmouth �

Sidmouth GC ’s seniors visited Teignmouth this week captained by John Bainbridge, but lost out in wild and windy conditions, writes Terry Carter.

I had lived in Teignmouth before I took up golf and, when driving past the course above the town, had often noticed that, even in the height of summer, the local golf dress code appeared to include thick jackets and woollen bobble hats.

With the exposed course suffering from the impact of Hurricane Denzil as it moved northeast from Cornwall on Tuesday, golf was difficult. Bainbridge led off with Brian Cole determined to master the conditions, but failed. Tee shots were going anywhere but straight, and a poor start saw them lose the first four holes before they gradually came to terms with the conditions. However, the disappointment in a 6 and 5 defeat was only tempered by winning the last four holes when the game was already over.

Bob Winstone and I were next off, and, along with his partner Bob Gateshill, were receiving shots from Ray Chubb playing off 11 handicap. Chubb started by losing two balls in the gorse and my partner put his tee shot in the same place, so I used a five iron for safety and hit the ball about 70 yards before it retreated 20 yards. Gateshill sensibly punched low shots down the fairway to win, while his partner spent the time finding another six balls in the gorse.

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We did level on the second, but in a close game for most of the round, fell away to lose 4 and 3.

Peter Emery and Brian Alabaster were closely matched with the home pair Martin Beaney and Derek Bush, who was giving the shots, while Emery was coming to terms with a popular handicap reduction. Although Sidmouth’s pair played well, given the conditions, a 5 and 4 defeat left them in danger of collecting the money after dinner, although Sid’s captain eventually claimed that honour.

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Tony Willson and Roy Smith gave hope to the visitors as they led all the way round, still one up as they stood on the 18th tee. A long and accurate 230 yard drive into gale force winds was a lot to ask on the par three, and the home pair secured a win to level the game and share a point.

Vernon Ruffle was next off partnering Brian Le Masurier, who coming from Guernsey, regarded the conditions quite benign by comparison.

All square at the turn, this game was close throughout, but won on the last by home pair Bernie Morris partnered by Bob Naish off 16, who was giving 4 and 8 shots, respectively, to Le Masurier and Ruffle.

The last game out featured Mike Sherry and Bruce Harcourt off 21 handicap, facing Roger Handover off 18 and Bob Chitty off 25. Sidmouth’s pair were in the lead after six holes and still in the game at the turn, but fell back to go behind at the 12th. Handover and Chitty then pulled ahead to win 4 and 2 for the last point. However, Mike Sherry could bask in the glory of winning the bottle of wine for nearest the pin on the par three fifth, although nearest the green would have provided more potential winners in the conditions.

Result: Teignmouth 5� Sidmouth �

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