Golf Society News

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This is always the busiest period of the year on which to report, with a flurry of matches and competitions around the months of June and July. 2018 has been no exception.

In June, the society played matches against the OMWs and the Old Alleynians. Robert Hollidge led the team against the OMWs for the last time after many many years of tireless commitment and energy, for which we are all very grateful; he has now retired to Canterbury and whilst he is still able to join us for some of our meetings, he is not able to manage this fixture for us going forward. However his swansong saw us retain the trophy in a drawn match, 2-2, this time at Shirley Park, the second successive year we have done this following our win in 2016. The match against Old Alleynians takes place annually at Tandridge, which is well populated with OWs and OAs as members, as well as being renowned for the quality of its post-match catering. The result was yet another win for the OWs, this time by 4.5-3.5; the last time we lost this fixture was in 2012!

We were not so lucky against KCS Old Boys in July. A match that is always played on their home turf, Royal Wimbledon GC, is never going to be our most successful, but we had won the previous year by 4-0, and so it was disappointing to go down 1.5-2.5; indeed this was the first match lost under John Butler’s two-year captaincy, not that he is claiming much credit for the winning run! Also scheduled for July was the reinstatement of our match against Croham Hurst GC, last contested in 2013. Unfortunately, it was postponed – because of the heat! There is a first time for everything.

The Cyril Gray is a scratch competition for over-50s, competed for by the same 32 schools each year. Our team this year was captained again by Tony Mason, who had the unusual, but welcome, experience of being able to call on two new recruits, Roddy Sage and Ian Chicken. Our prospects looked good after a narrow but well-earned first round victory against one of the stronger schools, Fettes. Unfortunately, as is the nature of things with older golfers, Roddy had to withdraw from the second round match with an injury, and the reassembled team lost narrowly to Chigwell, the deciding match going down the 18th.

The one competition during the period which was open to all members was the President’s meeting held at The Addington, and hosted of course by our President, Dudley Thompson. This was another very hot day, and The Addington proved a tricky venue for most of the participants, with parched fairways providing some unpredictable and sometimes unkind bounces. However the conditions were the same for all, and some in our number produced some very creditable scores, none more so than David Mason, who scored a warmly-welcomed maiden victory with an excellent 33 points. I did take a photograph of David receiving his prize from the President but the breadth and brilliance of his smile clearly proved too much for my phone! Also to be commended for their performances are Tony Fuller, who took runners-up honours with 32 points, and David Hughes, third, with 31.

In announcing the winners at The Addington, the Captain noted with sadness the passing of David Pearce, recently an active member of the society, who will be missed by all of us.

Anyone wishing to play with and/or join the society should contact the secretary at peterbgale@sky.com.

Peter Gale (Hon Sec), OW (1963-69)

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