Two more club champions found
- 27 November 2022
- Peter Watson
Two more club champions have been crowned as our flood-ravaged season draws to a close.
Both Richard Pearson and Peter Watson went into their 36-hole NBS finals on Saturday nursing knee injuries against younger and longer-hitting opponents but stuck to their own game plans which relied on precision rather than power to ease to surprisingly comfortable wins.
Richard - a fitness marvel who used to climb mountains for fun - scaled not one but two peaks during a busy week when he was forced to use a cart. On Wednesday he shut out former multiple champ Paul Tunnicliff 6/5 to reach the intermediate final by playing steady and at time brilliant golf . He lost the first hole to a par but had worked his way to four up at the turn after winning four of the last five holes with pars on the back of an opening 41. Paul claimed No 10 but Richard won the next three with two pars and a bogey to close it out emphatically.
As top qualifier, he carried that form over to Saturday against Geoff Halkett, who had been playing well.
In ideal conditions on a freshly mown course with the greens running at an excellent speed - a credit to our departing greenkeeper Eric Shurson - they shared the first two holes before Richard went ahead with a bogey at the difficult No 3. Geoff drew level with a par three at No 5 only for Richard to win the next two with a bogey and par. Geoff cut the deficit to one with a fine birdie on No 9. The second nine was a similarly tight affair with both men winning three holes each in coming in with matching 41s. Geoff was all square by the 22nd and went in front for the first time when he parred the 25th. However, Richard - showing composure and a sure touch around the green - made what was the decisive break by winning the next three holes with pars and then No 30 and 31 with bogies against a deflated opponent. A half on the next secured him a deserved 4/3 victory to cap off an excellent season which also saw him win the Maitai Masters intermediate trophy.
Peter Watson went into his match against fellow leftie and top seed Pete Green with few expectations after losing his five previous senior finals and knowing that time was running out to get the monkey off his back.
A good start was crucial and he got it by winning the opening two holes with pars but Pete sunk two long putts, including one from off the green, to win No 3 and No 6 with pars to even it up. But Peter won No 7 with a par to go to the turn one-up after shooting a 38 off the stick. He went further in front after Pete made a mess of the par three No 11 and kept his nose in front with some excellent chipping. A putted birdie from off the green at No 16 increased Peter's lead and he ended the first round with a 76 and four in front after Pete hit tree trouble at No 18.
The margin grew to five after Peter got up and down again for par at No 19. Pete - who drove well - had his chances to get back in the match over the next four holes but missed a series of short putts. It was out to six-up when Peter almost chipped in on the long par four 24th and another up and down at the 26th pushed him further ahead. Pete gave himself a glimmer of hope by winning the 27th but more chipping woes after two booming shots saw him halve the par-five 28th which summed up his day.
After both found the green on the par three 29th, Peter all but nailed the coffin shut when he drained a 35-footer for a birdie which Pete just failed to match. The match ended at the next hole with a half to give Peter a resounding 7/6 win which was built on his short game where he one-putted half his holes.
With Phil Sellers having beaten Mike Murphy 6/5 in the Junior A final played the previous week, the only outstanding match between Warwick King and Grant Fergusson for the Junior B title was unable to be played because Grant was ill.
In the match of the day - a net round off the white tees - Chris Louth took the honours with a 69 from Maurice Woodhouse who came home with a 70. Andy Isle pipped Barry Rhoes for third on countback after both recorded 74 while Jasper Broad-Kolff completed the top five with a 76.
There were five twos scored, with Brendan Doyle, Chris Louth, Aaron Kotua, Stephen Russell and Peter Watson sharing the spoils.
Next Saturday (December 3) we hold our closing day fun ambrose starting at the earlier time of 9am. It is for men and women golfers of all abilities and will be played in teams of four. Following that will be the Shootout final involving the top ten qualifiers playing over nine sudden death holes.