Stamina required in Sussex croquet

The Budleigh Salterton September Handicap Weekend attracted 20 entrants including a contingent of four from Sidmouth.

The Budleigh Salterton September Handicap Weekend attracted 20 entrants including a contingent of four from Sidmouth.

Both Roger Hendy and Mike Taylor reached the semi-final stage of the knockout competition, but failed to progress to the final, which was won by Marie Lester of Budleigh.

Roger, Mike and Barbara Clarke also figured in the final stages of the Egyptian competition without quite managing to make the top spot. However, Roger was the runner-up and he also won the fast game prize by trouncing an unfortunate opponent 26-0 in 1hr 15mins.

An excellent first Budleigh Tournament for Roger.

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l The Parkstone Trophy is an inter-club competition played under advanced croquet rules without regard to a player's handicap - called level play games.

Sidmouth, represented by Cliff Jones, Peter Hills, Richard Wood and Robert Hammond, visited Nailsea on Sunday where they met a formidable team with low handicap players and a history of success. In particular, Cliff and Richard were up against tough opposition, so Richard did well to end his singles game only one point behind his nationally ranked opponent.

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After the teams agreed not to be limited by the clock, the doubles partnership of Peter and Robert struggled for almost four hours before winning their game!

The final result was 5-2 in favour of Nailsea, but the Sidmouth team were not too disheartened with their performance and wished Nailsea success as they head towards a final.

l Sidmouth Croquet Club members Julie Horsley, Nancy and David Temple, travelled to the Sussex County Croquet Club at Southwick to compete in the prestigious Challenge and Gilbey Tournament (first played in 1900).

Nancy put in an excellent performance by reaching the final of the Gilbey Goblet handicap knockout event and was only beaten in a very close finish by one hoop (golden hoop). All three enjoyed the experience of meeting new adversaries as well as some old friends. The schedule was very intensive with competitors playing three games every day for three days (each game possibly lasting three hours), with a further two games on Sunday, giving time to travel home late in the afternoon. Special mention should be made of Julie Horsley, who was not only the tournament manager, but also found time to compete!

Julie has a fast growing record of senior event management under her belt and, not for the first time, was complimented by all competitors on a calm and efficiently run tournament.

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