Still, valiantly, undefeated Sussex journeyed down to Bulbury Woods to take on the Dorset Captains.
Situated miles from anywhere, down long forgotten lanes, through rolling fields, and past tiny houses sits Bulbury Woods. By alternative routes, it is just off the main road and about two minutes from the industrial estate.
As a course, it lives up to its name; there are plenty of woods! It is a short course, measuring 5,833 on the Yellow Card. As you would expect, it is quite tight and easy to get out of position unless, of course, you are Nigel Wates, in which case it is heaven.
Ian Potter (Vice and Designated Driver) and Joe Angella (Captain and Designated Drinker) took on David Woodroffe (Dorset Captain) and Rob Brown (BWGC Vice) in a close contest. Over the front nine, David and Rob combined brilliantly to take a three-hole lead. Rob was a good guide for where to go and what to avoid on the course. Joe and Ian got their act together and stood on the 15th tee One Up. However, having to give shots on three of the last four holes, none of which were long or difficult was too much, and they lost two down. The tightness of the course, the hidden ditches and the squally showers meant that the swearing quotient was high and that we all managed to learn a few new words and phrases as we hacked our way around. It was a lot of fun.
Mick Grimes (seasoned campaigner) and Matt Hurst (new boy) faced Dorset Secretary and 1960s heartthrob Nigel Mobbs and Jack Crockett. Mick made Matt write the match report, cruel. It was a great game, with five birdies between both sides. After 11 holes, they had only halved two of them. Nigel and Jack went two up after 12 before Sussex magnificently won four holes on the spin and finished with a par to win two up.
Peter Rodger and Des Malcolm were up against Pat Crane and Graham King. Apparently, it started with a kiss, the kiss of death for Dorset, as they were one man down when Pat failed to turn up. To make matters worse, Graham had Des chatting in his ear all the way round. Graham fought hard, but he finally succumbed to Des’s endless nattering. Job Done! It seems that Graham had the experience of a lifetime. Sussex won 5 & 4.
Ivan Parnell and Keith Talbot squared up to Alan Bates and Ralph Nubee Buckus. Unfortunately for Dorset, Alan could not play; perhaps he had heard of Keith and Ivan’s outstanding golfing talent! If Ralph had started on the 18th, he could have had our boys under his thumb. Fine par’s by Ralph, after the event, was little consolation. Good company by Ex-Hoteliers (?), and Keith was a gentleman, as always. Sussex won 9&8.
Peter Ward (The Duck Whisperer) and Nigel Wates had a great game against Martin Brennan and Brian Walsh. They saw an alpaca on the 6th, ducks on the 6th, and birdies on 1 and 18. Great company and a great course with good greens. Nigel shot a gross 72, and Sussex won 2 up. As an added bonus, Peter has been included in the match report.
Kevin Heanan and Colin Prior challenged Rick Dodd and David Kimberley. They had a very enjoyable game with Dave and Rick. Unfortunately, the slopes on the greens defeated the Sussex boys. Kevin’s putter was red hot after the match was over. Kevin tried to persuade them to play another nine holes, but the Dorset Captains claimed that old age had withered them. Sussex Lost 5&4.
Andy Lamb and Bryan Fairbrass were up against Peter Johnson and Ron Rogers. A very up-and-down game on the front nine, with Andy chipping in for three and a win and Bryan getting four net 3’s kept it to 2 up. It was a bit of a sprint with some ham and egging (Is this school sports day? Ed), soon putting Andy and Brian 5 up before a half secured the match. A tricky little course but very pleasant and with good company. Won 5&4.
Peter Brookshaw (Artist in residence) and Mitch Clark (Part-time car owner) against David Picton and David Scott. Mitch asks, “How can a 13 handicapper, giving 19 shots, win?” Well, he doesn’t. “Oh, I did have a partner” (I think Mitch has been at the beer! Ed). Another day Pete, another game; you were great company, just don’t have any sharp knives near you. (Is he safe to drive? Ed) The course and the Dorset sombrero wearers were a great laugh, with top banter. “Right, I’m off to buy myself a little doggy,” said Mitch. Sussex lost 7&6
So, there you have it; Sussex win 5 – 3 and remains undefeated.
Well done to everyone who played. It was a lovely day. All the Dorset Captains made us welcome, it is the company that makes the day. The course was lovely, and apart from a few little showers, we got around in the dry.
As for the food, the star of the show was the steak pie, proper pukka pie, nice.