The Pattaya Links Golf Society                                                                                                                                       Pattaya's Oldest & Friendliest Golf Group
 



 

 

Members' News

This week the PLGS welcomes

Michael Lam
Patrick Engles (Belgium)
Ian Bell (Scotland)
Kevin Roberts (England)
Andy Southworth (England)

to their debut PLGS round

We also welcome back old friends

Russell Exley (England)
Garry Hookey (Australia)
Soren Hansen (Denmark)
Bill Copeland (USA)
Steve Jones (Wales)

 

Goodbye and best wishes for a safe return for

Shabir Hussein (Wales)
Ahmad Tanvir (England)
Willy Brown (Wales)
Ron Cousin (England)
Ray Clarke (England)
Simon Watts (England)
Richie McIntosh (Scotland)
Mike Kaps (USA)
John Malet de Carteret (England)

 

 

 

The True Spirit of Golf
(With grateful acknowlegements to John Mason)

The Golfer’s Prayer

O Lord, I would a golfer be!
Where par is 4, I seek a 3;
Where par is 3, my goal is 2;
But, failing that, an ace will do.

On all par 5s, I aim for 4
A 3 would make me praise thee more.
Alas though, Lord, such scores it seems
Are nothing more than wishful dreams.

So, when I shake on the 1st tee,
One straight shot I ask of thee.
Let me not slice it out of bounds
3 off the tee destroys my rounds.

Let me not hook and trouble find,
For such disasters blow my mind.
Nor let me top it thirty yards
And run big scores up on my cards.

Preserve me too from fiercest rough;
This game's already hard enough!
Nor let me stray into a burn
And find I have not lost my turn.

Do not let me bunkered be,
As sand will be the ruin of me.
And, if I hit a little thin,
Stop my ball right by the pin.

O let my nerve be hard as steel;
Let my hands be blessed with feel;
Let my putts be firm and true;
Down in one – at worst, in two.

And, if my prayers shall all be met,
Then I will act with etiquette:
All my divots I'll replace
Pitch marks? I shall leave no trace!

So, one more favour, Lord, I seek –
Can I play this way each week?

 

The 19th Hole Beckons

From the first to the last, golf should be a blast;
As we hasten our way to the bar.
Where tales may be told, by the young or the old,
Past, current or ne’er to be star.

In a euphoric state, it’s the place to relate
How we played better than we just scored.
How we gave it a clout, how we saw it lip out,
On a course all but put to the sword.

Of a draw – not a hook – it’s a tale of bad luck
Of balls resting in divots be damned;
Or in rough much too deep; or in bunkers too steep,
With too much or not enough sand.

You’ll hear more than twice, that it wasn’t a slice;
It was simply another power fade.
While that chip that was thin, but that somehow fell in,
Was the best shot that ever was played.

With so much to relate and so much to debate,
How could we ever get bored?
As we tell of our duels and argue the rules
In the hope of some reasoned accord.

I’m sure you’ll agree, it’s the best place to be,
This abode of the golfing go-getter.
So, by my reckoning, with all of this beckoning,
The quicker we get here the better.

And amid all this banter, you’ll find just one ranter -
It’s me – with a message – OK?
With a 19th like ours, golf shouldn’t take five hours,
So, let’s all put an end to slow play.

 

 

 

Tournament News

 

The Count Lords it at Riverside...Just!

At this time of year the course at Bangpakong Riverside is a joy to play. Always well prepared, the fairways are well grassed and the greens are excellent, running at pace. In addition there is generally a refreshing breeze evident on the banks of the Bangpakong River. This was the scenario for the latest large PLGS group which visited on Monday 20th January.

The forty-nine golfers were divided into three flights (0-14, 15-19 and twenty plus) and got underway on time ushered by a fastidious starter.

The course has a name for good scores and today almost 1,600 stableford points would be amassed by the golfers. In the third flight Niall Caven returned to the podium with a third placed 38 points, leaving John Masters and Simon Watts to share the lead with 40 points, which John Masters won on countback.

In the top flight Rana Gurnam, still smarting from his "silly hat" award last week, returned 38 points for third place with Belgium's Patrick Engels pipping him for second on countback. The winner of the top flight was Mike Ehlert whose round was full of skill and accuracy as he returned 42 points for a splendid victory.

The second flight saw some of the highlights of the day with Colm Lawlor taking third with 36 points. A country mile ahead were Bill Buchanan and "The Count", John Malet de Carteret with 43 points each. John's back nine proved better than Scotsman Bill's and so he took the green jacket with a broad smile at the presentation.

Technical awards went to Darren Beavers, Henry Mah, Ray Clarke, Ahmad Tanvir, Steve Moxey and Bill Buchanan (two) with near-pins and Patrick Engels (longest first putt on the eighteenth).

Of the many candidates for the "silly hat" Mr Phil made special mention of Niall Caven's efforts on the first hole where a poor drive left him more than 300 yards from the green. Despite his faith in his swing he resisted all attempts and abuse from the tee behind him to play. When he did commit himself he was still woefully short and rightly deserved the award for holding up a large field up for five minutes or more, unnecessarily. The wig was less complicated with a thoroughly deserved award made to Carl Lovatt for his low score of the day.

An excellent golf day ended with a rousing rendition of "Happy Birthday" to Mr Maurice and the cake, as well as the golf, was very tasty indeed.

 

The Count Raking in Green Jackets

As our bus turned into the golf course we wondered if there would be enough (or any) caddies for our 52 golfers, recalling a report from another Society a week before. There was indeed another large group at the course but they were sent to the tenth tee, leaving the first tee open for Links Golf.

The round got under way a few minutes early and every group made good time with, surprisingly, no hold-ups, considering the numbers on the course.
Weather was fine and warm to hot with the occasional breeze for comfort.

The fairways were, as usual, in very good condition with plenty of grass and a nice green colour. The rough has been allowed to dry by using the water on the fairways and greens. These greens are starting to speed up again and there were many sad stories of three and four putts. If you can tame the greens you will score well, as four players who all had great scores can attest.

It’s just not fair when you score 42 points, only to be beaten on a countback for the Green Jacket, but that’s what happened to Colin Smith today. A great effort and a win in ‘A’ flight. Paul Gill and Patrick Engels both scored 35 points and went to countback for second and third with Paul getting the nod. Mike Ehlert is back in form and held fourth spot with 34 points.

John Malet De Carteret (The Count) carried over his form from Monday by pipping Colin for his two-in-a-row Green Jackets and the win in ‘B’ flight.
Soren Hansen, having his first game with us since his return to LOS, did well to score 39 points to take second place. After a disaster last week, Larry Slattery showed what he can do to grab third spot with 37 points and Colm Lawlor survived a countback on 35 points for fourth.

Rick Pope went missing for a couple of weeks but came back fresh to score 41 points and the ‘C’ flight win. Again, an excellent score but can’t get the Green Jacket. We called Bryan Barrel a surprise packet a couple of weeks ago but he is not a surprise any more after making second place with 35 points.  Another countback, this time John Masters took third ahead of Mike Firkin which left Kenny Jepson missing out. All three had 33 points.

Near Pins ‘A’ flight: Derek Phillips, Bob Stokes, Paul Durkan
Near Pins ‘B’ flight: Rick Pope, Bill Stewart, Garry Hookey, Colm Lawlor
Longest First Putt: Mike Ehlert.
Best Front Nine (non winners) …. Mike Kaps….19 pts c/back
Best Back Nine (non winners) …. Dave Arataki ….20 pts c/back

The ‘silly hat’ award went to a different type of countback. There were too many silly things, e.g. Four players who tried to get on a bus going to the Water Park before being told. Another who wanted the bus turned back as he had left his change of clothes bag at the bar, and yet one more who put his name on an ‘A’ flight near pin when his handicap is 27. It was now out of who drew the ‘short straw’ (or actually broken tooth picks). John Pearce (name on wrong pin) was the lucky winner of the ‘silly hat’ The ‘wig’ prize was much easier, won by newbie, Kevin Roberts, for his very low score.

It’s high season and we must expect crowds, but apart from a long line waiting to pay green fees, Pattavia managed things well and we were able to get started slightly early, satisfied customers.

Jon Dean’s Triumphant Return

Oh, oh, not again?  There were not enough caddies available for us when we reached Treasure Hill, but the caddie manager funneled caddies to each group in turn as the caddies arrived at the course, sound familiar? But this was not a course overbooked, far from it. Many caddies were at the Temple “to pay respect for Chinese New Year” (my Caddy’s words) and had not yet returned. However, the end result was that each of our thirteen groups got away without delay, and all with caddies.

We started slightly before scheduled time and for the first couple of hours the weather was hot and sticky but by the early afternoon some cloud cover and a welcome breeze had arrived.  The course was still in the same condition as we had two weeks prior and the newly renovated tee boxes are looking good and are back in use, while the greens are showing good pace, even if I couldn’t get the ball to go uphill.

Same old story here, only three of our 49 starters managed to play to handicap or less.
Those who played today and had scores in the forties at the past two outings came down to earth with a thud, but this is Treasure Hill.

Jon Dean is a rare and welcome visitor as his work keeps him away a lot of the time, but he made sure this trip was worthwhile by scoring 37 points for the win in ‘A’ flight and the Green Jacket. Phil Davies, at last, found his real form to score 36 points for second spot which left Patrick Engels in his third minor placing in a row, scoring 33 points for third.

Billy Buchanan has been consistent and grabbed his chance today by winning ‘B’ flight with 36 points, the third of the only three playing to handicap. Charles Miller came from nowhere to score 35 points for second and a much-improved showing from Tony Browne got him into third place with his 34 points.

Mike Firkin returned to the winner’s list, after a bit of a drought, to take ‘C’ flight with 32 points. Consistent Nigel Harrison had 31 points for second and Rick Pope was in the placings again with 30 points.

Near pins ‘A’ flight: George Mueller, Vic Hansen, Jon Dean, John Harrison,
Near pins ‘B’ flight: Mike Kaps, Nils-Peter Kristensen, Paul Greaves, Mike Tottenham,
Best Front Nine (non winners) …. Henry Mah….19 pts
Best Back Nine (non winners) …. John Anderson ….17 pts c/back

Three silly things on Wednesday and another three today had to go to short straws (tooth picks) countback. Willy Brown left his carry bag in the bus. The driver delivered it back later. John Masters dropped something from his bag and it stayed in the bus until it was returned by the driver, both silly. Maurice didn’t play today so, to keep himself amused, he timed each group as they left the eighteenth green to measure the gap between groups. The slowest was 16 minutes and ten seconds behind the group in front of them, so all four took part in the draw. One by one they drew okay until finally, Tony Browne. He grabbed two sticks, one of which was the short one and he hurriedly tried to give it back, but, too late.
He wore the ‘silly hat’ on behalf of the other five ‘silly’ things.

The ‘wig’ was easier as Mike Tottenham had a rare poor scoring day.

To end the day, the unexpected. A sudden heavy rain shower nearly drenched our last three groups as they tried to find shelter, but after a slight delay they finished the round.

 

 

 

 

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Other News

 

Sign-Up Sheets

Sign up sheets are now displayed for up to a month before a fixture as current demand is greater than experienced before. Thank you for your cooperation.

Important Notice

Golfers are reminded that a confirmed handicap needs to be shown before competition entry is accepted.

PLGS and Handicaps

As we are a competition based golf group the access to accurate current handicap details is essential to preserve the integrity of our competitions. Unfortunately for a few weeks now this access has been severely restricted with the PSC's ongoing problems with its online facility. Therefore PLGS has decided to encourage all golfers to join Birdie (Thailand) and use its handicapping system. It is the same USGA system as currently used by PSC and the introduction of the new unified system in 2020 will offer no challenges to the professionally maintained system. Access is available 24/7 and all PLGS competition scores are now being sent to Birdie as well as PSC. Adjustments are iimmediate and a confirmatory email is sent whenever a member's score has been added.

Birdie membership is free and an app is available for download on its website at https://birdie.in.th/

All PLGS golfers are therefore asked to join Birdie.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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