APPARITIONS AND ACQUISITIONS IN APRIL

Here we are again ladies, another month gone and the golf season is just hotting up, which is more than we can say for the weather apart from that one amazing weekend before Easter where after paying careful attention to body parts that had been hidden for months we rushed out to model something from our summer wardrobes. Alas, that was short lived and we have now hidden our pale legs once again.

I do hope you have all admired the recently acquired new clubhouse features namely shiny new taps and loo brushes. While on the course we have a host of rhododendron bushes and loads of newly laid turf. The latter has confused me slightly as I was surprised but overwhelmed to see a large group of grounds staff and workmen recently all over the course kneeling as I played my round. A level of deference to the Lady Captain I certainly wasn’t expecting. Some have even taken it so far as to bury themselves up to the waist in mud. I’m sure this hasn’t happened to previous Lady Captains. I have been informed that in a very short time this level of worship will cease and will be replaced with an elaborate display of water fountains all over the course from now ’til eternity in recognition of yours truly. I am deeply touched!! On a serious note the new irrigation system is an amazing achievement for the club and will further improve our wonderful course.

Spring turns our thoughts to buying new equipment or sorting things out that need doing.

I stood with a playing partner the other day who suddenly announced ” I’m not used to handling one so big! ” I turned to see her struggling to put a wood head cover on a new driver she was trying. Then the same week a different lady was trying my clubs and measuring them against hers.

“Does size matter?” she pondered measuring my driver against hers. I reassured her it was not all about the length, but more what we did with it.

While we’re talking rounds of golf, I would like to draw your attention to a few rules that have come

up for discussion in the clubhouse. While my rules knowledge is improving rapidly, I make no apologies for frequently referring queries to Alastair who apart from explaining the ruling will also make me read it too. So here we go.

GUR

Taking a free drop out of GUR is OPTIONAL. so you can play out of GUR if you wish. Why might you choose to play out of it?

Well, you may have a better line to the pin from the GUR, but more likely it could well be that your “nearest point of relief” would put you in a bush or up against a tree stump. Yes, nearest point of relief does not mean the nicest drop you can find nearby, it actually means the nearest point you can get relief from the GUR but not necessarily a nicer position. So a bush or a tree might well be your nearest point of relief………which is why relief from GUR is optional.

Sometimes courses have COMPULSORY GUR ( officially known as “play prohibited”). You MUST take a drop out of this and frequently a drop zone is created. We had this for a while last year on the bumpy stuff on the 12th. We now however are expected to play out of it!

Just one more rule for you to consider.

You try to play a ball out of a bunker and it doesn’t come out but rolls further across the bunker.

You CAN rake the sand where you played your first attempt before going to play your second attempt providing this does not improve your lie or your stance for your second shot.

If two balls are in the same bunker close to each other what do you do? The player not playing their shot can mark the ball pick it up and hold it. They must not clean it in anyway or put it in their pocket ( many say hold it between finger and thumb only, not a rule, but good practice). When the second person comes to play their shot the condition of the sand as it was when their ball came to rest in the bunker must be recreated. This may be done by raking or building up the sand by hand if necessary before the ball is replaced where it was.

I hope that helps a few of you who were in doubt.

Moving on…….a massive thank you to everyone for your help and support at the Spring Open. We had just under 100 people enter. Sheila did a splendid job getting the information out to clubs and collating the entries. Thanks also to our ladies on the welcome desk, our starters, Jean for the flowers, those who manned the “chilly” half way house, everyone who provided cakes, ground staff, clubhouse staff …………and anyone else who knows me!! Also to anyone who said anything that helped keep me sane on the day, it was truly appreciated.

The competition was won by Carol Blackburn, Minu Nathwani and Diane Wood from Shirley. 74 points

2nd place went to Dawn Gould, Rita Lawson and Di Greenway also from Shirley. 72 points.

3rd place on count back went to our very own Pat Gandy, Doreen Walker and Sarah Boden. 72 points.

I am waiting to hear how much money we made for the section from the One Up Golf Sale and there were also donations made to our charity, Dementia Uk, at the halfway house.

League matches, 9 hole league matches and friendly matches are now all up and running. Can I please ask that you wear team kit when playing in any of these. If you haven’t got team jumpers/shirts, just ask around as I’m sure people will be willing to lend them out or buy one of the new ones from Mike, a good investment long term.

Tickets for The Casino Night on Saturday 13th May are now complementary. So if you fancy a bit of fun, do come along….the gambling is pretend, no money is involved. If you haven’t tried the Tapas menu at the club yet, I recommend you do so. It’s only being offered in May to start with, so don’t delay A lovely selection of dishes beautifully prepared and served and good value for money.

And finally………if I’ve looked in need of a bit of cheering up recently, it’s because the other morning, for the first time in my life, I woke up in bed with a 60 year old!! Was a bit of a reality shock to be quite honest, but I knew normal service would be resumed as he stretched, rolled over and reached for his rule book!!!!

Happy Golfing Everyone

Chris X