Seniors’ Centenary Salver success for Chris Allison

East Devon golf club. Ref exsp 25 17TI 5397. Picture: Terry Ife

East Devon golf club. Ref exsp 25 17TI 5397. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Two competitions have been played at East Devon in the last 10 days; a non-qualifying three ball team event (TBTE) was held on the final Saturday of March and then the Seniors played round two of the qualifying SCS (Seniors’ Centenary Salver) on the first Monday of April, writes Paul Willoughby.

The format for the latter was singles Stableford, but the Saturday meeting was a Bowmaker. Wossat, I hear you ask?

Well, the players play in teams of three, using Stableford scoring. For the first six holes, only the best of the three scores counts. For the next six, the two best scores count and for the final six holes, all three scores count. Got it?

Great fun with pressure building as the game progresses. There are various different Bowmaker permutations including one (the Finnish Bowmaker) where contestants, usually on a Thursday from November to February, have their trolleys pulled by huskies and use coloured balls. Not many people know that.

Well, the 2019 Race to Dubai is under way; this is the tournament where the world’s best golfers accumulate points throughout the year and the top ten win an indecent sum of money for doing something they absolutely love – playing golf. We can’t all be so lucky, but actually I don’t mind; to see any sport played well (excluding darts!) is quite mind boggling and if rewarding them by paying them vast amounts of dosh is what it takes to get them to the top, then so be it.

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The leading scorer so far is Shane Lowry from Ireland with 1,335 points. The lowest is Darius van Dreel from the Netherlands, with 2.2. Never mind, Darius, there’s plenty of time, and you’re heaps better than a lot of golfers we know!

The winners of the TBTE were Roger Chappell, Neil Sear and Nick Sear with 77 points. Second by a gnat’s whisker was the team of Jason Rowbotham, Rob Dance and Robin Murray with 76 and third by an even smaller gnat’s whisker (is there anything smaller? Suggestions please), but on countback, were Steve Morton, Martin Hyde and Tom Peters also with 76 points.

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There were twelve twos sharing a pot of £156 – you do the sums!

Now the Seniors were playing for something even more serious – their handicaps and therefore their reputations. Can you imagine, non-golfers, the chit chat and muffled laughter when a serious player (that’s all of us – we are golfing gods in our own minds!) fails to make the grade and plays like a plonker? Well, that’s what’s at stake – being able to hold your head up high in the clubhouse, or slinking away unseen.

Actually that’s a load of cobblers; we are so lucky to play golf in beautiful surroundings and if we do well, then that’s the icing on the cake and if we don’t, so what? There’s always next time!

The leader with an excellent 40 points was Chris Allison from a handicap of 25 (now 24). Well done, Chris. Second with 38 points was Barry Chapman (24 – that’s his handicap, not age!). Martin Bright was third, also with 38 points (13 now 12) and Graham Stuart was fourth – on countback – also with 38 points (26). There were eleven twos, sharing a pot of £92.

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