Berks Bucks & Oxon Golf
Welcome to the Autumn edition of the County Jottings. Our golfing season is complete and we have had some success this year with our 1st Team winning both the North of the Thames League before going on to beat Surrey in the Daily Telegraph Salver. The first time we have won this since 2006.
Our Junior teams have had another good season against other Counties with the Under 16s winning their League again and remaining undefeated for the second season in a row. The Nike Futures Tour has had a very successful third year and this programme of events will continue through 2014. Congratulations to all the winners of our Championship and Trophy Events, also to those who represented the County at Junior, Senior and County levels. Tom Wilde (Castle Royle) won the main Order of Merit and we wish him well in his Professional career. Alex Wills (Harewood Downs) was the winner of the Junior Order of Merit.
The work of the Golf Partnership continues with the Academy Coaching programme for this year now at an end. Recruitment days have been held to identify the junior players with potential who will go forward into next year’s programme.
Our 2014 fixture list appears on the following pages and will be updated as soon as provisional dates and venues have been confirmed. Please visit our website to obtain details of our events and to enter them online. Please let us know if you would like us to include any other information.
A special thanks to all the Clubs and Members who willingly gave up their courses for our events this year. We are appreciative of your support of County Golf.
We are grateful to our Sponsors – Fullers and Nike – for their support this year and for their continued support for 2014.
In our final match at Fulwell we took on a determined Middlesex team who were hoping to prevent the BB&O keeping their unbeaten run in the League for the 2013 season. The foursomes session ended with the Middlesex team holing a 35 foot putt on the last to win the final game and reduce the morning deficit to just 2½-1½. The early singles matches remained quite tight with games going to each side but a strong middle order saw BB&O start to open a gap from the host Union. The tail enders picked up their wins as well making it a convincing away win by a margin of 9-3 and a 100% record in all matches. Game points for the season were an amazing 39 for with only 9 against, to some extent easing the pain of a few near misses in recent years.
The team at Fulwell: Ashley Walton (Frilford Heath), Craig Buttivant (Gerrards Cross), James Foster (Newbury & Crookham), Jack Haines (Gerrards Cross), Chris Little (Frilford Heath), Toby Morgan (Frilford Heath), Dean Newbold (Frilford Heath), George Wilson (Calcot Park).
The team at Fulwell
The Final of the Daily Telegraph Salver took place at Brocket Hall on 6th October. BB&O had won all four of our matches in the North of the Thames League, whilst Surrey had got through on Game Points after 3 Counties in the South had tied on 5 points. Our matches against Surrey have always been hard fought affairs, often with the teams evenly balanced. Both sides have lost a few key players recently, either because they have turned Professional or gone back to the USA on scholarships.
The morning foursomes went well and at one stage we looked assured of a 3-1 lead into lunch, but the final Surrey pairing fought back from 3 down with 4 to play to earn a half and cut the deficit to 2½-1½ at half time.
All the afternoon games were tense affairs and after 4 games it was 2-2 and we still held a 1 point advantage. The news from the course was not good with 1 likely win and 3 losses which meant a tied match was the most likely outcome. However, our most 'Senior' player and past County Captain, Malcolm Reid, had other ideas. As in the morning foursomes, he was 4 down after five holes and heading for defeat before a surge of birdies turned the tide. He came to the last all square and 3 very solid shots to the par 5 left him with a 12 foot putt to win the match. It turned out it was not needed as his opponent was destined to 3 putt from the front of the green and a par was good enough to win his game and the match by just 1 point. Well done to all who represented the County this year as we won the Daily Telegraph Salver for the first time since 2006.
Thanks to Surrey for their part in a fine match played in the very best of spirit by all who took part.
The team at Brocket Hall: George Wilson (Captain), Tony Crockford (Vice Captain), Carl Corbin (Stoke Park), James Foster (Newbury & Crookham), Kevin Freeman (Stoke Park), Tom Lawson (Stoke Park), Andrew Lynch (Stoke Park), Malcolm Reid (Sonning), Dean Newbold (Frilford Heath),Ashley Walton (Frilford Heath).
The Elite boys scored a good victory against Wellington College in our recent home fixture at East Berkshire on 5th October winning the match 6-4. This is always a tough match as golf is built into the curriculum at Wellington College and our boys are ‘back at school’.
The team at East Berkshire: Patrick Bart (Burnham Beeches), Alex Buckner (Bearwood Lakes), Michael East (Burnham Beeches), George Gardner (Castle Royle), John Gough (Stoke Park), Damien Hewitt (Castle Royle), Chris Little (Frilford Heath), Louie Moore (Beaconsfield), Tim Shin (Castle Royle), Robin Sullivan (Castle Royle)
The U16s boys retained their League title, making it two League wins in a row, following a solid performance and victory at Beadlow Manor on 28th August where we beat Hertfordshire 8½-3½ and Bedfordshire 7-5.
The team at Beadlow Manor: Sam Boffin (Hadden Hill), Zac Cooper (Beaconsfield), George Gardner (Castle Royle), John Gough (Stoke Park), Alex Nicholls (Goring & Streatley), James Smith (Frilford Heath), Robin Sullivan (Castle Royle), Elliot Wills (Beaconsfield).
The Under 16s took on Surrey in the annual match sponsored by the ‘The MUGS’, played at West Hill, where Surrey got the better of us in the foursomes and singles. Although we lost 4½-10½ we saw many spirited fight backs from all of the boys which we might not have seen in years gone by.
The team at West Hill: Josh Davies (Frilford Heath), George Gardner (Castle Royle), John Gough (Stoke Park), Ross Hampshire (The Oxfordshire), Damien Hewitt (Castle Royle), Stanley Lewis (Chartridge Park), Alex Nicholls (Goring & Streatley), Steven Stanhope (Frilford Heath), Robin Sullivan (Castle Royle), Elliot Wills (Beaconsfield).
The Under 14s completed their League season at South Buckinghamshire on 23rd August with a win against Middlesex 9-6 but a disappointing defeat to Hertfordshire 3½-11½, who won the League
The team at South Buckinghamshire: Nick Elmey (Drayton Park), Mitchell Green (Drayton Park), Joe Hawley (Drayton Park), Stanley Lewis (Chartridge Park), Guilhem Loisel-McFadden (Castle Royle), Fraser McDonald (Sonning), Aidan Osobase (Stoke Park), Gregor Peberdy (Maidenhead), Steven Stanhope (Frilford Heath), Bradley Tuckett (East Berkshire.)
Now in its third year the Nike Futures Tour is proving to be a great success with the events attracting large entries. The youngsters have had an opportunity to play at some of the best golf courses in the country and we have seen some outstanding golf and some real prospects for the future.
We finished our League matches with a convincing win against Middlesex at Gerrards Cross on 2nd September. With just one loss on the day we took the match 7½-2½ and finished 2nd in the League to Hertfordshire after narrowly losing to them 6-4. Thanks to everyone who represented the County this year, especially those who stood in at the last minute when asked.
The team at Gerrards Cross: Ashley Brewer (Denham), Jim Cameron (The Oxfordshire), Rod Crisp (Ellesborough), Adrian Donkersley (Gerrards Cross), Robert Gill (Gerrards Cross), Chris Osborne (Temple), Cliff Pearce (Ellesborough), Gilbert Runnicles (Gerrards Cross), Steve Webb (Henley)
Autumn Trophy & Open Championship
A great finish to the senior events for the year, at The Lambourne on 29th September, saw Adam Batty (Hazlemere) secure 2nd place in the Order of Merit by winning the Autumn Trophy by 3 clear shots from Matthew Chiddington (Burford). Toby Morgan (Frilford Heath) needed to finish ahead of Adam to secure the second place OOM prize but his effort fell tantalisingly short after a great start.
In the resurrected Open Championship, last played in 1974, Lewis Atkinson and Guy Woodman battled it out for the honours. In the 'olden days' BB&O Pros and the County's top Amateurs played for the Penfold Trophy as an Open Championship. Roy and Carl Mason, Jimmy Hume, Derek Craik, Michael King, Donald Steel, Joe Lawrence and Tony Rees, all great players of the 1960s and 1970s, have won this event. The time was right to start again. Lewis and Guy were paired together and it really was neck and neck down the straight with Lewis finishing with 4 pars, Guy edging closer after a birdie at 16 but not quite managing to catch him over the last 2 holes. We are hoping that the event will prove a great challenge in the future, for Pros and Amateurs, to test their skills against one another. Congratulations to Adam Batty who tied Guy Woodman for 2nd place.
On a lovely day at Calcot Park on 6th October, Wokefield Park just got the better of Castle Royle by 4-3 in a very evenly fought contest. As it transpired the 2nd and 3rd games were the key to Wokefield Park's success and they won both of these by the smallest of margins. As ever, an excellent Championship this year and we look forward to 2014 when the 90 odd clubs who enter, battle it out for the Trophy.
Hillman Trophy Plate
On a very windy day at Harewood Downs on 27th October, Chiltern Forest had a convincing win over Datchet by 5½-1½. Perhaps Chiltern Forest's experience of playing a downland undulating course just gave them the edge on the day. Another match played in excellent spirit and our thanks to the Club for hosting the Final.
Order of Merit
Tom Wilde (Castle Royle) couldn't be caught in the OOM and finished just over 3 points clear of Adam Batty (Hazlemere) to take the Trophy. Tom has now turned Pro and we wish him well in his future career. He has supported the County 1st Team whenever he's been available and we thank him for his commitment.
Junior Order of Merit
Alex Wills (Harewood Downs) received his Junior of Merit Trophy after an exceptional year that saw him win 3 events and finish well in a number of others. He reduced his handicap to Plus 1 during the year and also won his own Club Championship. Younger brother Elliot (Beaconsfield), no stranger to the winner’s podium in BB&O events, came 3rd but missed out on the 2nd prize by just a couple of points as club mate Zac Cooper's consistency over the year gave him the edge. All of the contenders for the JOOM are called upon for the County Teams and the players are always willing to sacrifice their (potential) points to represent the County.
English Golf Union – South Eastern Group Events
Southern Counties Seniors Foursomes
Due to various reasons several of our lower handicap players were unavailable for the final held at Calcot Park on 27th August and we were forced to field a below strength team. Despite this we managed to beat Sussex 3-2 in the morning but unfortunately lost to Surrey 3½ -1½ in the final.
Team at Calcot Park: Ashley Brewer (Denham), Jim Cameron (The Oxfordshire), Rod Crisp (Ellesborough), Adrian Donkersley (Gerrards Cross), David Doodson (Temple), Duncan Forbes (Sonning), Neil Franklin (Beaconsfield), Bob Lander (The Lambourne), Cliff Pearce (Ellesborough), John Summers (Frilford Heath).
South Eastern Group Seniors Championship (Alan Hobson Trophy)
Congratulations to David Niven who retained his South East Championship (Alan Hobson Trophy) with a fine win at Ashford Manor, with Ashley Brewer coming 7th.. David also won the Frame Trophy at Worplesdon earlier in the year.
We had a disappointing turnout at the Half Year Council Meeting on 28th October due to the bad weather. Many delegates were unable to travel due to the overnight gales that had damaged many trees and numerous roads were closed.
However, The President, Duncan Forbes, highlighted the achievements of the year and a number of discussions regarding the state of the Game in England took place. Details of the 1st Draft of the England Golf Strategic Plan were revealed and great concern was expressed about the decline in Club Membership over the past decade.
After the meeting the delegates enjoyed the hospitality of Woburn Golf Club for lunch and golf on the delightful Duchess Course.