Bunker Boys 10-14/07
Monday July 10,Crystal Bay,(white tees), Medal.
1st Michael Brett(15) 70 net
2nd Trevor priestly(19) 75
3rd Geoff Parker(13) 76 oco
Near pins: Robby Watts, Takeshi Hakozaki, Neil Carter/ Jimmy Carr shared.
The weekend Buddhist festival signalled the official start of the monsoon season in Thailand and just to confirmed it Pattaya was hit with a monsoonal storm on Sunday night with heavy rain. This left the Crystal Bay course a little bit soggy for today’s play so the pick, clean, and place rule was applied. In light of this, there was a degree of leniency in relation to application of the rule related to casual water on the course, it may have seemed a bit churlish to be too strict in this matter, but as golf is a game which relies on the honesty of players it’s up to individuals to adhere to the rules.
Despite the rain, the course was in remarkably good condition, the heat on the day was oppressive so hydration was most important. A relatively empty course meant that the round was complete without any delays and in a very timely manner. Scoring on this course is normally of a high standard and it usually takes somewhere like forty points to secure a victory. Today’s round was medal format which may have accounted for the lower than normal scores. Third place went to the ever reliable Geoff Parker on count-back from Steve Durey on seventy-six points, Trevor Priestly took second on seventy-five, and the winner on the day was Michael Brett, just returned from a five week home visit and straight into the prizes, on seventy. We had the unusual repeat in a week of Neil sharing a near pin, which after repeated measuring they could not be separated, this time with Jimmy.. Another unusual event today went to Neil Carter who was seven off the tee on the par five third having put three in the water and finished with a healthy dozen for the hole, without this disaster Neil would have been in the reckoning.
Wednesday July12, Pattavia,(white tees), Stableford.
1st Robbie Watts(7) 39 pts
2nd Jimmy Carr(17) 38
3rd Paul Corner(9) 31
Near pins: Robbie Watts(2), Paul Corner.
For a variety of reasons, illness, injury, holidays, and threatening weather our numbers were down for today’s outing to Pattavia. It’s fair to say that monsoon season is well and truly upon us. Heavy overnight rain and threatening skies made the prospect of fine weather golf look dim so we set off from the MClub more in hope than expectation.
Despite the course being relatively empty we were unfortunate to be out after a local five ball which kept the pace of play slower than was desirable. Casual water could be found in various parts of the course so once again pick, clean, and place rule was applied. Light rain began to fall on the back nine and by the time we reached the sixteenth tee it had turned into a torrential downpour so we took shelter for about twenty minutes. Had we not been held up by the local five ball we would have been finished and in the showers of a different kind.
Robbie Watts played out of his skin today taking first place with thirty-nine points off a seven handicap. Had he not suffered a minor collapse on the closing holes his score would have been in the mid forties. He also collected two near pins for good measure. Second place went to Jimmy Carr one point back off a seventeen handicap which was also high-quality golf, with Paul Corner brought up the rear with thirty-one points off a nine handicap.
A green and caddie fee on nine hundred and fifty baht which was supplemented by a free voucher for two Chang beers was excellent value by any measure.
Friday July 14, Khao Kheow C&A (yellow tees), Stableford.
1st Robbie Watts(7) 32 pts
2nd Takeshi Hakozaki(11) 30
3rd Jimmy Carr(17) 27
Near pins; Robby Watts(3), Jimmy Carr.
Today’s venue for the last round of the week is one of the best in the area and a favourite of many. Today, however, the course was somewhat disappointing, it was very soggy in places due to recent rain, so pick clean, and place was again used. The wetness of the course was unavoidable, however, the state of the bunkers was surprisingly poor for a course of this standard. Grass was growing in some, while just about all had very poorly defined margins and were in need of a good trim.
Despite there being no one in front of them our first group was surprisingly slow so the round took four and a half hours to complete, way too slow for the liking of the following groups. For the second game in a row, Robbie Watts took the honours, this time with a much lower score of thirty-two points, he also dominated the near pins taking three. Second place went to Takeshi who had a curious round starting both nines in sparkling form only to fade away in the closing holes, third place went to Jimmy Carr who also took the remaining near pin. Paul Corner had a very solid round from tee to green but failed miserably with the flatstick, it just goes to prove that putting is a game within a game and a bad day on the greens can ruin what might otherwise have been a good round.=