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27-MAY-2018: MacArthur Grange – Single Stableford + 4BBB Matchplay Rnd 2

OUTRIGHT WINNER: RONNIE KNEBUSCH [21] 43PTS

It’s been a very long time since we played here as a social club. Past memories of the course were bad, not because of the course layout, but because of its diabolical condition 🙁

So interest was high to see if the course was back to its pristine and challenging best 🙂 Historically, the land was originally used for open grazing land.

It is now protected under environmental protection zone E3, that is, land with special ecological, scientific, cultural or aesthetic attributes or environmental hazards/processes requiring careful consideration and management to ensure development is compatible with these values.

The golf course lies in an area referred to as the “Scenic Hills“, a local name given to a vast tract of gently rolling hills and valleys that cradle the city of Campbelltown and provide its scenic backdrop.

Campbelltown Council has for many decades fought to preserve this area and has rejected several rezoning requests for housing development or cemetery/crematorium that would have impacted on the golf course existence. The most recent development plan was to build around 550 homes on the site of the golf course but was rejected by Council in 2016.

Interestingly, the last major development plan approved by Council in the “Scenic Hills” was in 1998, it was for the construction of an 18-hole golf course (aka MacArthur Grange), clubhouse and maintenance sheds 🙂

Today saw 29 Revesby players show up for a single stableford event in conjunction with the second round of the 4BBB matchplay championship. Macarthur Grange is a 5500 metre links-style course with some of the biggest greens you will ever see. The course looked very dry but more importantly, the greens were verdant looking! Most players were familiar with the course.  It is well designed, challenging and somewhat unique. Almost every hole is shaped into a valley, with relatively flat fairways, but big hilly slopes covered in deep grass on one or both sides of the fairway. It is severely up and down hill, so if you walk it, don’t get a caddie, get a Sherpa! For the majority, a cart is essential to traverse the course.

Play got underway at a warmish start time of 8:30am from the 1st hole. Local rules were “prefer-on-fairways only” and use the “Irish rule” for lost balls (to speed up play). The game was slow,  particularly with majority of matchplays being so close.  Some players spent a lot of time looking for golf balls, not knowing the “Irish rule” was in play today. Fortunately, all players conducted themselves well and remained very patient out on the befuddling course 🙂

How many had sore arses and broken backs from the electric carts as they lurched at full speed across the rock hard undulating fairways?  The pedal had only two speeds, full or stop 🙁

And what about the course conditions?  Feedback from players ranged from challenging to crap, with the majority agreeing with the latter.

Yep, the weather has been very dry for some months, but have we come across another course with fairways as bad as the ones seen today?   Loamy soil interspersed with dead/dormant grass is a cricket pitch not a golf fairway. Neil Armstrong could have placed his foot on one of the fairways and gotten away with landing on the moon, so barren was the ground.  Only problem was, he would have ended up with shin-splints, so hard was the ground 🙁 The dreaded rough was next to dead, with balls running through it like a hot knife through butter. On the other hand, the greens had been watered, so were in much better condition for golfing.  Being large and grainy, most players came unstuck with 3 and 4 putting the norm.

About one-third of players scored 34 or more points (today’s CCR), with only five players actually bettering their handicaps.

The outright winner today was Ron Knebusch with a run-away score of 43 points.

Never had to look for his golf ball all day, just kept it in play. A remarkable individual effort considering he was also involved in the 4BBB matchplay with his team mate, Ken Harris.   Ken Big didn’t do much, he only won one hole in the matchplay as he was suffering from nicotine withdrawal symptoms after losing his packet of cigarettes out on the course (which were later found by his new buddy and non-smoking soul mate, George Lattouf). Ronnie’s shoulders were worn out from carrying Ken all day, but he managed to stave off the brute pairing of Joy Mesuria and Steve Vaughn by finishing the matchplay 1up.

A champion performance from The Don, err, I mean, The Ron 🙂

The A grade winner today was Wayne Coleman with a very good score of 39 points.

Has played solid all year and has been unlucky not to grab more trophies than the single guzzlers back at Rosnay in March. Can be flashy at times, particularly with his trousers, but his driving was no flash in the pan.  Hit some long drives last week at Bankstown as he worked out the secret to driving and used it to success today as he steered the ball across the Sahara-like fairways. Avoided trouble and used his short game and putter to hide any sins. A well constructed win.

The B grade winner today was Steve Vaughn with a fine score of 38 points.

Can be very hot or very cold, but this year, he has kept under the radar. Why is that, you may ask? I’m not sure, but I know that Revesby’s handicapper has finally put his body on the line and scored well, so will he pull out the knife and slice himself? Teamed with Joy Mesuria to lose his 4BBB matchplay one down, so it was a bitter pill to swallow. Everyone is cheering his good performance today and wish him many more good performances in the future!

It’s kinda like self-mutilation, isn’t it Mr. Handicapper 🙂

The C grade winner today was George Ostermann with a fine score of 38 points.

It’s deja-vu, it’s deja-vu. I’m sure I wrote about him last week for doing exactly the same thing! Let me check my notes, hmm, aha, I see, yep, I’m not delusional. Mister steady-eddy has grabbed the C grade win two weeks in a row, now making that three C grades for the year. Combined well with his 4BBB partner, Glen Blades, to smash the 4BBB pretenders of Adam Giltinan and Rossco Hamer with a whopping 8 and 6 victory. George has a simple game plan that is hard to beat, hit it straight. Took advantage of the rock hard fairways, it was just another, dare I say it, straightforward victory 🙂

The Guzzlers winner today was Phil White with a fine score of 38 points.

Another person in good form for some time.  Seems to play better after each sea cruise and the more he does it, the better he gets. Why, it’s rather obvious, let me explain.

  • He beats the old ladies in the putting competition every time, so that boosts his confidence.
  • He learns how to chip into a net on a rolling deck, that improves his balance and timing.
  • He gorges himself on the plentiful supply of food on board – that lowers his centre-of-gravity.

I rest my case 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

BRADMANS:

The Bradmen winners were Ken Little (27 pts), Rossco Hamer (21 pts) and Ken Harris (25 pts) for A, B and C grade, respectively. All Bradmans today were involved in matchplays, of which, two were in winning 4BBB teams, go figure that one out! Just goes to prove matchplay does have an impact on performance, both positive (outright, B grade and C grade winners today) and negative (all three bradman winners). One of the Bradmans had withdrawal symptoms from lack of nicotine, another didn’t make use of the Irish rule whilst the other just got creamed by the opposition.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  1. Best score was Ron Knebusch with a whopping 43 points.
  2. No air-swings to report 🙂

LOWLIGHTS:

  1. Cliff Bourquin hit his second shot with a fairway wood onto the par5 18th green! Before he could be congratulated by his playing partners, a crow swooped down and pinched his ball from the green 🙁
  2. Speaking of crows, Steve Vaughn saw crows pinch his sandwich and biscuits from his cart and he hadn’t even started to play!
  3. The greens are large at MacArthur Grange, none more so than the dreaded par4 4th hole.

It is called “The Hourglass“. This short par 4 has the biggest green on the course at 40m+ long and only 5m wide at the neck of the hourglass, where this hole gets it name. So many players either 3-putt or 4-putt this hole, with several seeing their putts run off the green. Jeff Hilder can attest to 4-putting the hole whilst both Mick McCarney and Cliff Bourquin saw their putts run off the green.  In fact, Cliff saw two of his putts on the same green run off 🙁

4.Many players had trouble reading the grain on the greens. They are probably the grainiest greens ever experienced by Revesby players.  Some greens like the 4th and 10th were exceedingly slow in parts and yet quick elsewhere 🙁

5.The short par4 11th hole caught many players out whilst they watched their tee shots run, and run, and run into the water on the left. Even hitting into the right hand rough on the hill resulted in the ball bouncing left and run through the rough, then across the fairway and into water. It was diabolical 🙁

Revesby results on the day:

Outright Winner: Ron Knebusch [21]     43 pts

A Grade Winner:  Wayne Coleman [15]    39 pts

B Grade Winner:  Steve Vaughn [22]     38 pts

C Grade Winner:  George Ostermann [25] 38 pts

GUZZLERS CUP:    Phil White [11]       38 pts

BRADMANS:

A Grade:         Ken Little [12]   27 pts

B Grade:         Rossco Hamer [21] 16 pts

C Grade:         Ken Harris [26]   25 pts

Nearest To Pins:

S.Thorn(2), P.White(6), G.Dean(8), J.Varrica(13), W.Higgs(15)

Drive & Pitch:

P.White(16)

MATCHPLAY RESULTS – 2nd Round:

Glen Blades/George Ostermann  def  Adam Giltinan/Rossco Hamer  8&6

Ken Little/George Lattouf   def  Mick McCarney/Cliff Bourquin 2&1

Jeff Hilder/John McDonald  def  Frank Saify/Mark McDonald  3&2

Ron Knebusch/Ken Harris  def  Joy Mesuria/Steve Vaughn  1up

 

 

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