Finally, we reached the last county match of the season, away at Buckingham GC in deepest, darkest Bucks.
Our original team was subject to several unavoidable changes through illness, injury and COVID. These withdrawals resulted in a last-minute appeal for players. Fortunately, Des Malcolm and Bev Legg came forward and allowed us to field a full team. It would have been disappointing to finish the season like this.
So far, we’ve had a good record, winning nine, drawing two and losing two. The critical question is can we make it ten wins? Well, let’s find out!
Joe Angella and Harold Knight took on the Buckinghamshire Captain John Mannering and Paul Greaves. Paul was a great help, giving us sound advice on how to play the course. Unfortunately, he could not stop John from driving down the wrong fairway and into a drainage ditch! Poor Paul spent five minutes looking for his ball, only to discover that John had picked it up and put it in his pocket. Overall we had a great time, lots of fun and Harold putted like a golfing God. Won 4&2
Brian Street and our new boy, Ivor Lane, played Uncle Albert, David Liston, and Jonathan Brooke. After three holes, the Sussex boys were looking at a big victory; after ten, they were two down. Then the fight-back began, with Sussex running out the winners, 2 Up.
Mark Terry and Rasoul Shahilow played Peter Short and Bob Jones. It was an excellent course, well presented, but the key was to avoid the drainage ditches. The company was good, as was the banter; it was a good laugh, with the match played in good spirit. (Sounds like you had a good time. Ed) Mark played exceptionally well, shooting 81 and earning himself a handicap reduction. Unfortunately, he was on the losing side. (It is clear where the blame lies. Ed). Lost 1 Down
Peter Brookshaw and Ian Potter challenged Rod Crisp and Henri Botha. Having started with a lost hole on the first, we rallied to level at various times in the match, but we never managed to get ahead! Ian managed to find most of the trees on the left, and Peter found most of those on the right. Eventually, we Won 3&1
Dave Balfour and Colin Prior showed Martin Bart and Steve James a thing or two. After a slow start, two down after eight, we somehow won three holes on the bounce (well done, Ed). Colin woke up when his medicine kicked in and began playing like a god. As always, the company was great. Won 3&1
Des Malcolm and Mickey Grimes amused Brian Grufferty and Tony Jefferies. What can I say? (A short, snappy and amusing match report would be good. Ed). We were Five up, and we kept the ball on the fairway. Our playing partners were good company. Mickey talked like a rabbit all the way round, and they gave up just to shut him up. Sussex Won 6&4.
Andy Lamb and Mitch Clark were up against Trevor Murphy and Peter Lane. To carry on the theme of the day, Andy and Mitch bacon and egged it! (The theme being that Mitch had a bacon sandwich and a bacon roll before the match! Ed) It was a lovely course, fun to play. Trevor and Peter were fun too! We had a great time. Sussex Won 4&3.
Bev Legg and Steve Dillamore faced Steve Derbyshire and Peter Hill. Having won the first hole, our opponents came straight back at us, and the lead changed hands several times. There was never much in it. It was great to play with Steve and Peter. Sussex Won 4&3.
Result; Sussex 6, Buckinghamshire 2
There you have it, a solid win for Sussex, and we finish the season with ten wins. Overall, a success.
It was a long drive up to Bucks, but we had a good day. The course was enjoyable and fun to play; the company was as excellent as ever.
We were joined for dinner by the Captain of Buckingham Golf Club, Sharon Dale. Unfortunately, she was unable to join us for the match. Suffice it to say; I am not sure that Buckinghamshire’s repeatedly referring to Sharon as the Ladies Captain improved things. We did enjoy a ‘lively’ discussion over dinner!
The beer and food report is a bit mixed. Let’s start with the good stuff. The bar served Timothy Taylor’s Boltmaker. This beer is a multi-award-winning Yorkshire bitter and a real treat for ale lovers. It was in perfect condition; had I not been driving, I’d have sunk many more than one!
As for the not-so-good part, that was the rice pudding, but we’d best not talk about that.
Captains, until next season, ciao for now.