Seniors’ Centenary Salver success for Geoff Walden at a sun-kissed East Devon

PUBLISHED: 13:00 07 July 2018

East Devon golf club. Ref exsp 25 17TI 5423. Picture: Terry Ife

East Devon golf club. Ref exsp 25 17TI 5423. Picture: Terry Ife


Round Five of the Seniors’ Centenary Salver competition was played at East Devon, writes Paul Willoughby.

This is a competition fought for by the Seniors throughout the summer, and the winner will be the player who has the four best rounds.

The weather was as you remember – blue skies, just enough wind to make the flags flap languorously (don’t you just love that word?) but hard ground with the ball bouncing all over the place, often in the wrong direction. However, although we will never beat the weather, we’ve come a long way in golf ball design. The first balls were made of wood, then came the ‘featherie’ - a leather ball stuffed with feathers. Gutta Percha followed using the sap from the Sapodilla tree from Malaysia.

Then there was the wound ball (like lots of elastic bands wound together with a hard cover) followed by liquid centre balls and lastly, the solid balls that we know today. Dimpling (does dimple really have a verb?) a golf ball was invented in the early 1900s and gave the player more control of the trajectory, flight and spin of the ball. Now, all makes of golf ball have dimples – between 250 and 450 per ball (some are even tetrahedral – I bet you weren’t expecting that!) and they can be any shape provided they are symmetrical over the face of the ball. Here my Wikipedia article goes into aerodynamics and I can imagine your eyes glazing over.

However, one last fact might wake you up; an estimated 1.2 billion balls are manufactured every year and an estimated 300 million are lost in the US alone. I’ve never played golf in the USA but I have often contributed to the latter figure here in the UK!

Remember the yardstick; if a player plays to his handicap then he will score 36 points. Anything over that is excellent and anything lower means more practice is required. The winner of this week’s SCS who, presumably didn’t lose any balls, was Geoff Walden who had an excellent score of 40 points from a handicap of 11, now 10. Well done, Geoff. Hard on his heels, also with 40 points, but second on countback, was Barry Devetta from a handicap of 10. Excellent play, Barry. Eric James was third with 39 (16) and Jim Millin was fourth with 38 points (14). Robin Grenyer and Alan Baker came fifth and sixth with 37. There were eight twos, but one player didn’t enter the sweep; the remainder share the pot of £91.

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