JOAN & PETER STOCK MEMORIAL
Sad, is the word which comes to mind. Sad, because the people we knew are no longer with us. Sad, mainly because what used to be a very well supported memorial appears to have lost its momentum. Only 16 pairs on golfing parade and insufficient support to make the dinner viable. Vice Captain Damien Murphy touched on the subject when presenting the prizes, and it will be high on his and Loraine’s agenda for their forthcoming year of office. Such matters have to be addressed in a club like ours and the Murphy’s, more than most, will find it an emotive issue, having played in and supported every one of the 27 events to date.
But enough of yesterday, let’s move to the results of this year’s two day competition. The winners, and probably the bookies favourites, were Captain Dean Moore and Past Captain Alan Jewett with a 2 day total of 128 points. Alan is an amazingly competitive and focused player, with more determination than Greta Thunberg. Dean on his day is also a formidable combatant.
They headed the field on the first day with 62 points but were usurped on the second by Michael and Jing Kruppa with the same total – 62 – a fine showing by my close neighbours.
The Fotheringhams, Margaret and Allan came second overall with 130 points.
Followed by the Kruppa’s with 131
APOLOGIES FOR DELAY
These three pictures relate to the competition held back on August 27th and taken too late for inclusion in last month’s issue.
Then we also have a couple which more than challenge the memory but must have been taken for a worthy achievement?
VERY UNUSUAL OUTCOME
The month’s second event was a bread and butter Stableford on Europa, Tuesday 3rd. What added jam to the slice was the fact that the first three men home managed 40 points and were each cut 1.2 Damien Murphy edged it on handicap and will now play off 11.4 whilst Campbell McGarvie will carry 12.8 on his shoulders. Third was Peter Edstrom, now 14.2.
In contrast the Ladies produced no handicap reductions. Laura Thompson 35, Karen O’Connor 34, and Margaret Fotheringham 34 also, qualified to have their picture taken!
XVIII PROPERTY OWNERS’ CHAMPIONSHIP
One of the big events of our year with no less than 92 participants, of which 46 were not members. An interesting challenge for management? Campo Asia was only opened on the Monday, this event taking place on the Wednesday 11th, so for most it will have been their first outing on the course which has been the scene of much activity over the past couple of months. The fact that winter rules were applied suggested a protective attitude on the part of the Greenkeeper’s team?
There was a 9.30 am shotgun start prior to which breakfast was to hand for those in need. Then came Flavio Papa, doing his thing as usual, knowing exactly which points to labour over, based on experience of previous non regards!
The maximum handicap allowed was 36.4 both men and women. The competition a straightforward 18 hole Stableford with categories for Ladies, Men and Family/Friends. Prizes going to the best three in each category, as well as the traditional Nearest-the-Pin awards. Later one heard favourable comments about the renovated course even though, quite naturally, some polishing touches have yet to be applied. A few thought the changes made the course a bit easier. Not easy you understand. Most of us know there is no such thing as an easy golf course?
The lowest handicap on the day was that of Pat Madigan (1) but playing off +2. The mind boggles. Mind you Sean was off +1 and that without playing as often as it might suggest. Robert Mitchell, for his sins, was listed as +3 but none of these gentlemen were eligible for prizes. Later in the day the cast assembled for what was called “Prize Giving and Cocktail”. The singular use of the refreshment aspect must qualify as the understatement of the season? There were enough drinks of every variety to satisfy the thirstiest, backed up by a myriad of creatively presented and deliciously tasting tapas. The supply chain never faltered. The F & B team were in overdrive. Top marks team!
Sean, as became the occasion, made an appropriate speech spoiled only by a disobedient microphone and a small group of guests whose personal conversations obviously warranted preference. To themselves. A very loud “ORDER” from a Past Captain, reminiscent of John Bercow at his best, failed to have any impact.
Finally, Flavio, who else, at his theatrical best, took centre stage and announced the following winners.
Ian Doughty (Miraflores but an Owner here) was the overall winner of the day with a commanding 43 points and, as is customary, thanked LCR for organising an enjoyable event as well as their hospitality, which earned approval from those listening. Ian spoke with a confidence suggesting this might not have been the first time he had handled this duty.
The Best Man award went to Emile Jan Sleets, a La Cala owner, whilst Alan Jewett, never far from the trophy table, was a point behind on 40.
Mary Coady’s 39 earned her the Best Lady Guest prize, with Sharon Bulter on 37. However, it was our very own Connie Maphar-Massar, another with close links to golfing success, who stole headlines by winning the Best Lady prize with 35 points, on handicap from young Kelly-Ann McHugh.
It was to be a good day for the Coady family because Liam, off 7, equalled Mary’s 39 points to win the main Guest prize. Nearest-the-Pin on hole 3 was Marie Wilson, whose photograph hasn’t come out very well but deserves recording.
On hole 17 it was Giovanni Ferretti whose accuracy saw him stepping forward into the spotlight.
Beyond all this though is the tangled tale of Baoyin Huang who registered an incredible 50 points off a 30 handicap. It would seem that there might have been a translation problem where his true level should have been, but this is not yet confirmed. He very kindly, and rightly, refused any prizes and our Handicap Secretary David Wilson now has the matter in hand. Whatever the outcome it sounds like Baoyin played very well? Meanwhile it must be emphasised that this was a very genuine misunderstanding.
ANOTHER SCORING MIRACLE
Having already commented on a triple 40 finish it is now time to draw attention to three 41’s, achieved on America on Tuesday 10th. On handicap the finishing positions were Michael Kruppa, on a hot streak at the moment, Jan Debrauwer, who always applies himself diligently, and that Ancient Warrior Iain Macaulay, who has been playing this game since the cradle. The handicap cuts were sizeable, of course. Michael 1.7 = 16.1, Jan 2.3 = 20.7 and Iain 2.3 = 22.2. Very well done, all.
It is nice to see Karen O’Connor gracing our courses again, and especially to see her picking up prizes, which she did this day with 40 points. Along with the success came the price. 1.6 = 20.6
Judy Lentelink, getting back into the swing of things with some success, chalked up 35 to edge Margaret Fotheringham out of second place on handicap.
CAPTAIN’S v VICE CAPTAIN’S
Use of the apostrophe is intended to make clear that this is an annual match between teams selected by, rather than composed of, these club officers. It is a match born in 2000 and overwhelmingly dominated by the Captains’ choices since. Judi Lentelink has kindly provided all the statistics and, such is her skill as a diarist and record keeper, could probably tell us what the teams were wearing at the time. This year there were no official colours but there was hot coffee and a bacon sandwich in the clubhouse before play began.
Overall it was a grey day, with spits of rain to worry you, and a host of persistent flies to irritate even more. For me it was just a pleasure to be back in action (sort of) after a lengthy layoff, especially sharing a buggy with Brian Farmer, never short of conversation, who was also my playing partner v daunting opponents in Laura Thompson and Pat Reid. We rather guessed it might not be our day when Laura launched her drive to the left of the 16th green (America), saw it bounce forward and then right, and finally roll straight into the hole! Brian, whose tee shot was nicely placed in birdie country, looked a bit downhearted. Laura on the other hand, after the initial shriek and high five hugs, looked somewhat apprehensive at the thought of husband Geoff’s reaction! Only 52 playing Laura, no need to worry!
The picture of Geoff, head on arm against the bar entrance, sobbing, will not be used though.
After previous success as a VC, but on the back of two VC’s defeats, Dean was clearly delighted when able to announce a win for his team by 7.5 to 5.5 All the winning pairs got a bottle of wine but a team photo was not forthcoming.
BACK TO WORK
We are indebted to Arthur O’Connor for the following report.
“The seniors resumed their fixtures after the summer break with a match at Baviera today 13/9. An early start from La Cala, a lost car containing 3 of our team, no coffee availability followed by a 2.5-0.5 defeat and no food availability in the clubhouse afterwards would normally have indicated a very bad day. Not at all though as the course itself was in very good condition and, due to the kitchen closure whilst the new owners get themselves organised, the home team entertained us in a beach restaurant where the food was excellent and where both Captains managed to deliver their speeches in their non native languages using I phone technology! The same technology also provided the means for the photo below of the 2 teams, minus Peter Edstrom who was well on his way to Portugal by the time that this was taken.”
Unfortunately the picture mentioned is, how to put this, not very clear. Unless Dorothée can work a technical improvement we can but say, thank you but no, Arthur.
WHILST ON THE SUBJECT
The recent publication of LCR early days pictures sparked considerable interest and prompts this ever hungry scribbler to invite any member who has photos, or just stories, they think might be of wider interest, to let me have them. Please.
A WIDER AUDIENCE?
The Ladies Section of our members are enjoying a great year of golf, social gatherings, tours, and all manner of activities designed to encourage togetherness, and this will certainly continue next year when, unlike Brexit uncertainty, Loraine will take over from Monique. To these ends there is a secret network, known only to those who have indicated interest, but no longer. If you are of feminine gender, and have a computer or “device”, you can now make use of the following link and all will be revealed. Please note though that to move on from page one it is necessary to answer a question or two. Bit like a survey really.
NOT OVERSHADOWED BY GLENEAGLES TV COVERAGE
36 players turned their back on the Solheim Cup and opted for inclement weather conditions. Gloomy to start with but cheering up later. Not too surprisingly the conditions for the AM/AM were somewhat sultry for the nine teams taking part on Europa. By early evening though things were back to normal, the mountains could be seen, the Med re-appeared in our vision range, and we, Lilian and I, were able to christen our new electric BBQ. Judi stood in for 75% of the prize giving officials, two in France, one in Italy, leaving lonely Dean to translate her statistics into names and positions. Which were:
1st with 91 points l/r David Wilson, Michael Kruppa, Vivienne Youngs, Allan Fotheringham. 2nd with 90 points l/r Dean Moore, Jill Davies, Dorothée Schmidt, Achim Schmidt. 3rd with 86 points l/r Rob Garner, Marie Wilson, Liesbeth Guise, Jan Debrauwer.
NOW THAT’S WHAT YOU CALL A PRESSURE PUTT?
Personal viewing of the Solheim Cup was intermittent but absorbing towards the end. If the script had been written in advance it could not have been a more demanding way to conclude the proceedings? The weather, wind apart, was friendly, the spectators supportive and enjoying every moment. Gleneagles, where one has stayed and played more than once, looked magnificent. What a beautiful setting and colourful coverage assisted by the USA team outfits. A terrific sporting occasion. Well done Catrina and Co.
YOU WIN SOME, YOU LOSE SOME
The Cobbers will be more than happy to be travelling back Down Under with the famous urn, but what a terrific Ashes series it turned out to be? All square on the pitch. Honours even – but the winners are Australia.
FIFTY YEARS ON
Who remembers Woodstock 1969? Who of a certain age will ever forget this trend setting openair music festival. 50,000 expected but, it is claimed, 400,000 attended over the five days, which were to have been three before the heavy rains hit things. Love in the mud? Joan Baez, Joe Cocker, Black Sabbath, Bob Dylan, and many more who then went on to entertain us for years afterwards. Glastonbury eat your heart out.
Whilst on matters musical has anyone outside Scotland heard of Texas? This is not a geographical question but reference to the group featured prominently in the opening ceremony of the Solheim Cup. Everyone to their taste, of course, but singer/leader/song writer Sharleen Spiteri – good old Scottish name? – didn’t make my hairs curl. It was amazing to later learn that they have sold 40 million records and been performing together for 25 years. Iain Macaulay probably knows all the words.
Staying on statistics for a sentence or two it was noticed recently that the Kardashians now have 279 million internet followers! Knowing very little of this family, and their obvious attraction, prompted a little research on my part which proved not to be an unpleasant experience. Natural attributes clearly play a vital part in their popularity but what they actually do to earn their fortunes remains a mystery.
BACK TO GOLF ALBEIT FAINTLY
There have been two recent matches v Alcaidesa, both of which have ended in humiliating defeat. No reports have been forthcoming! Requests for details remain unanswered. It is said our Captain, Dean Moore, is “uncomfortable” about the subject. Digging a little deeper it can be confirmed that an actual trophy does exist, as the photo below will testify, but it has never graced our clubhouse cabinet because – wait for it – we have never won it. It dates back eight years. Our time will come, Damien?
MORE THAN 50 YEARS AGO
In Paris, on the 13th September 1932 Paul Gorguloff, assassin of President Doumer, went to the guillotine. In London, on the same date, my mother introduced me to Planet Earth. In those times it was more dribbling than scribbling but things change? Just a brief word of thanks to all those kind enough to be aware of this occasion and to have sent messages of varying content. One made me smile out loud.
TENNIS LOVERS THWARTED
Amazon’s Prime denied millions the opportunity of watching the U S Open Tennis this month, and soon they are moving into soccer it is said! Pity about the tennis though because Flushing Meadows is a far cry from Wimbledon, full of life, passion, colour and noise. Said he from very pleasant memory. No reason though for us not to recognise the achievements of Rafael Nadal, for his 19th Grand Slam, and young Bianca Andreescu, the young Canadian lass who has made the most incredible start to her upper echelons tennis career.
How good it was to see Roger Dew’s name on the Medal Start Sheet Tuesday, 18th. and in action on Campo America after a long absence fighting for his life. We await his comments on greens which have been changed since he last played!
However, it was Chris Slattery who claimed the male headlines with a nett 68 and a new handicap of 3.8. Treading hard(and heavily!)on his heels though was wise cracking Peter Edstrom whose similar score earned a better reduction of 1.2 to 13.1. Alan Hemson, he of the elegant style, was third with 71. None of whom were available come prize giving time. AS Chris has already qualified for the Finals, as has Peter, it seems probable that Alan will be invited to substitute.
Experienced Janice Marler stole all the thunder of the day though with a fantastic nett 66, a cut of 3 to 21.2, and a place in the Finals next month. A clear winner from Karen O’Connor (70) and Ursula Wetzel (71).
Some time back we published statistics showing that golf was rated up there near the top of the “boring to watch” sports. Take out big events like the Ryder and Solheim Cups and one hesitates to think what golf’s position might have been? Gleneagles reported a “record attendance” but the spectators weren’t exactly jostling for position? One is reminded of this subject by two things. The first a current version of one of the sport’s main magazines. In it appear no less than three eminent reporters be-moaning the slowness of today’s game. Secondly, and just this very morning, comes Rory McIlroy, even before the Solheim Cup bubble has even begun to deflate. These are some of his actual words.
“I watched a lot of the Solheim and it was really slow,” McIlroy said. “As much as you want to watch and support the European girls, it’s hard not to get frustrated. I am a fan of golf and want the best for the game. Look, it’s hard because there are different scenarios where you simply have to take your time. And they were tough conditions up there. But, you know, something has to be done.”
“The guys that are slow are the guys who get too many chances before they are penalised,” he said. “It should be a warning and then a shot. I don’t understand why we can’t just implement that. We are not children that need to be told five or six times what to do.”
McIlroy craves zero tolerance, when all the game at the top level seems to promote is total tolerance. Players who blatantly break the rules – and yes, the rules are in place – are consistently let off. As an example, in the first singles match on Sunday, America’s Danielle Kang was timed as taking 70 seconds on a putt on the 16th, 30 seconds more than the allotted time. Kang was already on a bad-time warning and so the punishment was clear – “immediate loss of hole”.
McIlroy cannot help but contrast this to the treatment dished out to Rafael Nadal in the recent US Open showpiece. “Rafa got a time clock violation on a really big serve at the end of the final, so if tennis can do it, there’s no reason why we can’t,” he said. “It’s just a matter of enforcing it.”
(ED. Apologies to James Corrigan for the plagiarism.)
To the Spanish basketball team who have just won the World Cup, in China, for the second time.
SOUND ADVICE FROM ONE WHO KNOWS
Past Captain Vic Hilliard has sent us this very earthy and informative comment on the subject of prostate cancer, from whose greedy clutches he is in the process of escaping, thank goodness.
“First of all, I am pleased to advise that my PSA level is now 0.03, so I am clear of cancer. I have been having PSA tests for about 30 years, all OK, so It came as a bit of a shock when a reading of 4.75 came in. An ultra sound followed which showed a very small shadow, so an MRI was recommended, which also showed the shadow. So I had a biopsy where they found a small tumour in the left side of my prostate. I had a gleason score of 7 (3,4) so my surgeon recommended total removal of the prostate, and a stay in Xanit Benalmadena was arranged. I spent i day in Intensive care and 2 days in a private ward. The post operation biopsy showed a tumour of 25% in the left side and 12% on the right side. There was no pain really, but the catheter was very uncomfortable. 2 weeks later the surgeon removed the catheter and I am now exercising my pelvic floor muscles to get control of my bladder, which could take some time. I have no regrets because Prostate Cancer is a killer, but lots of men are too scared to have a simple blood test to check their PSA. Post script - I could name at least 6 La Cala men who have undergone prostate surgery recently, so the problem is quite common, Are you next? The support Pauline and I got from La Cala members was amazing because Pauline is awaiting a hip replacement and cannot drive her car.”
Vic went on to mention that a local practitioner in this field, a man of experience, is willing to check any member for just 30 euros. The newsletter is not allowed to include “advertisements” but if anyone is interested, and they should be, contact Vic and he will give you the details.
Meanwhile, thanks for the prompter, Vic. My test is on Friday!
THE FLOCK IS RETURNING
From distant corners of the EU come those who scorned the Spanish summer, so there were many familiar faces on parade amongst the 52 taking part in The Sandwich Stableford, on Asia, Sunday 22nd. For some, including your scribbler, it was the first experience of the much worked on course. For which, incidentally, ten new electric trollies are now available at reasonable cost for those who like to walk. Play started in tranquil, just nice, conditions but before the halfway mark a lively wind joined us. It would be erroneous to blame it for the decline in our team’s performance because that had started already.
Caz Rosselli was our leader, cash collector, score keeper and walker, usually on her tee and waiting for us buggy folk to catch up. This allowed Vivienne Youngs freedom to drive where she fancied, whilst Roy Davies, with whom one shared a buggy, began at the level you expect of such an experienced and knowledgeable exponent of the game. But then picked up the disease which rapidly became a plague for us. The day was not without pleasure though and included one scene never to be forgotten.
A member of considerable note was observed carefully raking the bunker we were waiting to play. This he did with obvious conscientiousness, repeating his efforts time and time again. We made it four minutes. Which is a long time to just be standing, club at the ready. What made this noteworthy was that, on reaching the bunker, we found it looking as though a herd of boar had trampled through it. All a bit odd.
For the first time in a while both Captains and Vice Captains were in attendance at the prize giving held in an unusual and uncomfortable location. There was considerable muttering from dry tongues. Eventually though Dean got to announce that Allan Fotheringham, Tracey Ledgard and Roy Davies had each won a Nearest-the-Pin prize and left your scribbler to decide where to take the best pictures because under the raffia network roofing was an obvious no-no, and the sun was beating down mercilessly outside. With the Captain eager to press on my choices proved not very good so apologies for this event’s picture gallery. Especially to Tracey Ledgard who was turned completely round from her original stance only now to find that her features have disappeared. Unless Dorothée can work her magic for me.
The major winners were as follows:
THERE’S ALWAYS A FIRST TIME
Europa, Tuesday 24th. and for the first time in my golfing life I played with a 4 handicap lady golfer. Her name is Karin Luxon, multi-lingual but of Swiss extraction, married to Keith, from Jersey originally. In fact the competition demanded that she play off 2 on this sunny, warm, well supported day. Good company, beautiful striker of the ball, focused, with a disciplined routine, her swing a joy to behold. To be confirmed but she played close to or better than her handicap. Husband Keith is big, broad shouldered, a big hitter, but, like a lot of us, doesn’t take the game as seriously as good scores demand. Another friendly golfing companion though. As was, and always is, Seppo Jaaskelainen. Like me on the day, he hit some good shots but too many blobs to expect much of a position when the scores are published. Which they now are:
Gerda de Brouwere sliced a fraction off her handicap but still has a way to go after her 36 points left her on 34. Maggie Coombes went nowhere in terms of handicap but earned second spot with 35 whilst just one “bad” hole cost Karin Luxon dearly. Still, 33 points off 2 is not to be sniffed at, even if it does move you up to 4.1 !!
The Boys from El Chapparal were at it again, our genial Secretary Geoff Thompson leading the charge with 38 points and a 0.9 drop to 12.2. Never far away from his “mate” was Allan Fotheringham’s 36, causing him to be trimmed 0.3 to 13.4 . In terms of score v handicap ratio though Chris Slattery’s 35 took the biscuit. What a consistent performer he is?
LADIES SENIOR LEAGUE
Añoreta GC was the first in Axarquía, created by José María Cañizares as recently as 1990, so a youngster by comparison with many courses? Not so when it comes to improvement though, having already switched all their 18 greens to Bermuda grass, as we have just done on Campo Asia.
Our ladies did battle with them twice this month, away first of all, early on, when the enjoyment factor was not translated into a satisfying result. Mind you, it was close. We didn't notch up one win but the last putt on the 18th decided things. Hard to work that out but our source is reliable. Our team included Captain Monique Peters & Liesbeth Smits; Alison Kirk & Annie Perignon; Kate Bradley & Dorothée Schmidt.
"We had a fantastic lunch with amuse-bouche, three courses and coffee, which was very generous of our hosts who also taught us some Spanish as none of their team spoke English. We had a great day despite the result."
The return match here at La Cala 24/9 saw a changed team in action. Can Rosselli & Susanne Valentin; Caroline Bacon & Kate Bradley; Janice Marler & Tina Garner. Gastronomic details have not been forthcoming but it seems we managed to win 5-1 so that was a rather better showing. The next and last matches of the year will be in October v RSSM Parador Golf, Málaga.
Dean, our captain, he of the tormented mind, came up with yet another formula for Sunday's competition, Campo America, 29th. Had the official title included E's instead of I's the response might have been more enthusiastic, but at least he escaped home after the prize giving all in one piece. For those of an unbelieving disposition we were asked to log two Stableford scores per hole. 1-6 required us to arrange our own pairings within the 4-ball and play Better Ball. 7-12 was a simple AM.AM and finally 13-18 was a Bramble, minimum one drive each. Got it?
Considering the thick low lying fog of yesterday morning - see pictures looking out on America from our terrace - the weather was great for early morning golf, but gradually got hotter as the flies got more in number and more persistent in approach. My spray seemed only to act as an invitation to visit.
By way of compensation though the company of David Gilchrist was enjoyable, the rare fellowship of Vivien Shute a bonus, and a first ever outing with Ruth Johansson, a serious contender for all points, a real pleasure. As individuals we had our moments, and spirits never flagged. As a team we were rubbish! Sorry to record but facts is facts, man?
Those obviously of a more serious and dedicated nature included the following: