17th Open Championship

Royal Liverpool Golf Club
Royal Liverpool Golf Club

Sunday Afternoon Foursomes

Just as we foregathered in the Caldy Golf Club car park, so the rain started to fall, followed by an increasing breeze. Tough conditions indeed. However, the mood in the lounge showed no sign of dampening, with a great sense of excitement for what was to come. Despite the difficult wet early spring conditions and untested partnerships, scoring was extremely good.

The winners were Mick Wain (11) Matlock, ably encouraged and cajoled by Trevor Glover (9) Chesterfield, with an excellent score of 36 pts beating the pairing of Alan Davey (5) Pyecombe and Martin Bennett (13) Mid Herts on count back.

Our very grateful thanks go to our host secretary Gail Copple and to understanding and charming members, who made an invading horde of secretaries most welcome.

As speedy an exit as possible was made to the hotel, in order to start the drying process and to change for drinks and dinner at Royal Liverpool.

The Dinner

We reconvened in the Mixed Lounge and Spike Bar for pre dinner drinks. There were many tales of missed opportunities and great misfortune, not to mention two foursomes who inadvertently played an extra hole and one anxious competitor who temporarily forgot it was foursomes and carried on playing the ball.

On the stroke of 8, House Manager Shaun instructed us to ascend to the Clubroom for dinner. Once seated, we were welcomed by our Host, Club Secretary, David Cromie. David gave a brief, but comprehensive, history of the Club and its role, particularly in the founding of the competitive amateur game.

Dinner was delicious and the service exceptional.

Our attention then turned to the serious business of raising money for two good causes. The first was the Mayhew Animal Home, for whom Stefanie Mainstone has been raising money for some time. Heads and tails, produced £186 and then the real fun began…

Pitching up the stairs (see photographs on Flickr) is a long established Hoylake members’ tradition. The Finalists were especially privileged to be allowed to nominate one ‘chipper’ per table to play, nearest the ‘pin’ (some four feet short of the kitchen doors!). Unsurprisingly, class told and Mark Evans returned to his table, carrying the two bottles of champagne. We had at this stage raised some £170 for Walking with the Wounded, but once the floodgates of open play were opened (£10 a go) the figure quickly rose to £300. Thank you to all who contributed.

It was a great occasion in a truly magnificent setting, surrounded as we were by so much golfing history. A privilege and a great pleasure.

The walk back to the hotel proved more difficult for some than for theirs, notably one lady competitor who accepted a lift, without being properly introduced to the driver!

The Final

Monday dawned bright and VERY breezy, in fact close to gale force. But the Finalists are made of strong stuff and although scoring was extremely difficult, putting especially, no one was too down hearted (even if they were playing off low single figures and were 11 over playing the 10th!) and all completed the course. Well done.

The full list of scores may be viewed elsewhere on the site, but if ever a Championship proved that golf can be ‘fair’ this was it. It was not the lowest or the highest handicappers who prevailed, but those who played solid golf (and to their handicaps) in the middle order. Again our congratulations to our Champion, and very loyal supporter, Trevor Glover. To come out top on both days is a great testament to quality play, very well played and thank you for your heartfelt words upon receiving the Trophy (we will see if we can’t get the right one to you soon…). Hard luck to Keith Adderley, not his year but no doubt that, as he has played in every one of the 17 years of the Championship, he will, along with his beloved Wolves, bounce back.

Our thanks go to all at Royal Liverpool from Louise on reception, to Norman in the Locker room to Starter Jimmy, to all behind the bar and in the Clubroom. Our Host remarked that Royal Liverpool is the friendliest of Clubs, and he is most assuredly correct. We must not, however, forget the Members who were gracious and charming in handing over their (very nearly unplayable links) for the morning, despite their observations on “tasteless ties”!’

A very big thank you and a request that we may be allowed to return in a few years time, please?

Finally, a thank you to all who have played in The Golf Club Secretary – 17th Open Championship. It has been for us and all our valued Patrons, huge fun and very worthwhile. We look forward to meeting up with you again in the autumn. Please send in your entry forms now, to avoid disappointment! And remember, you can enter as many Regional Qualifying Tournaments as you like.