Edinburgh Tournament AC Handicap Doubles
Along with 14 other pairs John Surgenor and Bill Strachan entered the AC Handicap Doubles event. The tournament was played on the lawns at Balgreen which had recovered from the drought but were a little uneven paced in areas. The event would be a straight forward KO with first round losers playing in a consolation event Format 26pt – 3hr 30mins – AC Handicap.
John and Bill’s first round match against Peter (6) and Barbara (10) McDermott was surprisingly straight forward with the McDermotts squandering bisques with no real gain. John was soon on peg, followed by myself and had the pleasure of pegging out in under 2hours.
Their next opponents, Alistair Malcolm (4.5) and Lorna Dewar (8) would be a much greater challenge and so it was. Play started slowly until John took his ball to 1-back, followed shortly by Alistair to Penult. Lorna and Bill made no real progress until Lorna took a break to 1-back. John then made it to penult, followed by Bill who then made a break only to fail 2-back. Bill soon redeemed himself with a break to the peg. With Lorna’s ball against the leg of hoop 5 John then directed a leave which would prevent a free lift for Lorna but left both our balls close to B baulk and a rush for John to penult. Alistair requested a referee, claiming Lorna’s ball was hampered but his decision fortunately was in our favour. Not that it made any difference as Lorna hit in from about 20yds and set off on a 2 ball break to 3-back. Time was called but Lorna had picked up her partner ball and proceeded to the peg. Match all square – Golden Hoop time. Lorna then left Alistair a rush to penult and John close to the East boundary with a choice of balls to hit unfortunately he missed and Alistair then ran penult to win 24/23. Congratulations to Alistair and Lorna (pictured) who went on to win the final on Saturday.
The Wilkinson Sword Competition
Five clubs contested this year’s competition, ACCC : John Owen/Bill Strachan, Balgreen : Charlotte Townsend/Lorna Dewar, Edinburgh : Alan Wilson/Rosemary Sanders-Robertson, Glasgow : Brian Durward/Peter Martin and Meadows : Roger Binks/Campbell Thomson. Format : Full Lawn – 14pt – 1hr 30mins – AC Handicap. The competition was played on Knightswood’s ever improving lawns, although play started in heavy rain and slowish lawns. For ACCC’s first match against Meadows, conceding 8 bisques seemed over generous! As the match progressed and Meadows built up a good lead, the bisque allocation was questioned and it was confirmed that Meadows were only entitled to 4 bisques. Fortunately they had used only 4 and so no further bisques were allowed. This resulted in Meadows adopting a rather defensive mode and we struggled to make up the difference losing 11/9. As the weather improved so did our croquet beating Edinburgh 14/11, Glasgow 11/10 and Balgreen 14/7. Roger and Campbell continued to play well throughout the day winning all their games and The Wilkinson Sword. At least ACCC only lost to the eventual winners.
SCA AC Handicap Interclub Trophy
ACCC started their defence of the Bombay Interclub Trophy with a narrow victory over Meadows 1. Malcolm Robertson (14) played Brian Cosford (16) and got off to a good start reaching the peg with his first ball in just over an hour. A careless leave then allowed Brian, using one of his two bisques to progress his first ball to peg. The remainder of the match produced very few breaks with no one taking control and the lead never more than a couple of hoops. When time was called Malcolm had a two hoop lead and decided to spread the balls over the lawn leaving Brian a long hit in which he failed, a win for ACCC +2T (17/15).
In the other match Robert Bell (18) was against Campbell Thomson (18); with no bisques available to either player breaks tended to be fairly short. Robert took an early lead which he managed to maintain for most of the match. With time running out Campbell was looking good but failed to run rover and Robert took advantage and ran 2 hoops when time was called, he then produced an excellent leave with Campbell failing to hit in, a win for ACCC +3T (18/15).
Jamie Burnett asked for help from the Club to oversee his Clan Tournament which was played in glorious sunshine at Crathes Castle on the evening of Thursday 2nd August. Eight Clan teams took part; Burnett, Gordon, Irvine, Strachan, Leslie, Fraser and Hay (A and B). The format was Golf Croquet, double banking, half lawns, approx 30 min time limit, knock out with winners playing winners and losers playing consolation games. Although confusing at times, teams entered into the spirit of the event, adjusting their play to avoid any “traffic” jams. Eventual winners of the “Gold” medal were Clan Irvine, the “Silver” Medal went to Clan Strachan and the “Bronze” Medal to Clan Hay A.
Thanks to Jamie for organising the event, providing light refreshments throughout the evening, and for a generous donation to the Club: thanks also to Brian Clark for supervising the other lawn.
SCA Handicap Doubles Defeat
Bill Strachan and John Owen demonstrated the saying if you do not hit in you will never win a croquet match. The ACCC representatives played at the Meadows on Sunday 22 July against Lyn Gilpin (14) and Robert Ley (18) conceding ten and a half bisques. The decision that Bill would attempt hitting in did not prove successful as he missed at least 4 attempts although admittedly all were more than 7 yds. In the meantime Lyn had quickly progress black to rover using 5 bisques much to Robert’s concern that she had not left him enough bisques. Change of plan but no more success with John failing to better Bill’s attempts and Robert slowly progressing blue. Bill then ran hoop 1 by chance rather than planning but could only join up but eventually ran hoop 2. Robert then ran out of bisques but was on 4 back (hoop 3); Bill hit in but unfortunately hit the pivot with his rush to hoop 3 and then under hit his stop shot approach to hoop 3 causing him to miss running the hoop. Robert took advantage running 4 back, penult and succeeded in peeling black through rover but over hit his back ball. John then came to life with a controlled turn taking yellow to rover and his leave saw Robert with a 20 yd roquet attempt which he just made, took off, rushed to rover, ran rover but mishit his rush on black but then took what seemed an age to line up his peg out from about 5 yds, eventually “rolling” both balls to the peg just hitting with black and, with blue close by, completed the peg out. Result +13 to the team from Edinburgh.
Summer Weekend Success
Congratulations to Stefan Colling who produced some impressive results to win the SCA Summer Weekend Tournament held at Balgreen on the 7th/8th August. Entering his first handicap event and playing off 22, he won all 7 matches against experienced tournament players. His wins resulted in a handicap reduction to 20 on the day but a few days later he received the dreaded email congratulating him on a further reduction to 16 courtesy of the SCA handicap committee – welcome to handicap tournament play! Unfortunately no photo of Stefan receiving his trophy was available.
MEADOWS AC OPEN
Bill Strachan was one of 13 players entered with handicaps ranging from -2 to 12; the format was Flexible Swiss, Advanced Rules, 26pt, 3hr, with no bisques. Play started in glorious sunshine which lasted the whole day and Bill’s play seemed to match the weather, winning his first 2 matches against David Houston (14/12) and Bob Darling (18/12). Bill’s final match against Barry Keen started badly, peeling his opponent’s ball through hoop 1 but then failing to run it, and he eventually lost 26/18. On a cloudy Sunday morning with a light breeze, Bill’s play deteriorated losing to Lorna Dewar 3/26. Feeling somewhat depressed, Bill’s mood was not improved when Chris Martin announced that his 5th match would be against Alan Wilson. A great experience of wired leaves meticulously set up by Alan but a poor hoop approach to penult sealed Bill’s fate, losing 19/26.
The tournament was won, not surprisingly by James Hopgood, undefeated all day.
Thanks to the different index points system for level play and winning his first 2 matches, Bill had a handicap reduction after Saturday to 8, and was happy with his weekend of croquet.
Thanks to Chris Martin for managing the tournament, Barry Keen as tournament referee and last but not least Harriet for providing a tasty afternoon tea on Sunday.
John Owen runner-up again
Middle Bisquers, Knightswood 9th-10th June 2018
12 players entered with handicaps ranging from 3 to 16. Format was 2 seeded blocks, 26pt, 2.30mins, Advanced Rules, no bisques. Block winners to play in final, ties to be decided on gross hoops then net hoops.
Play started in warm sunny conditions on much improved lawns, until mid afternoon when thunder, lighting, hail and torrential rain brought play to a halt, with the lawns eventually flooding. Play was abandoned and games pegged down, not an easy process in heavy rain and waterlogged lawns.
Pegged down games were completed on Sunday morning followed by rounds 4 and 5. Block A deciding game saw John Owen beat David Houston. Block B had the scenario of a 3 way tie but Alistair Malcolm won his last match against Bill Strachan to remain unbeaten.
John Owen 5wins David Houston 21-10 : RS Robertson 12-9 : Joe Lennon 26-4
Jamieson Walker 26-2 : George Plant 22-14
David Houston 4wins RS Robertson 15-11 : Joe Lennon 11-8 : Jamieson Walker 14-13
George Plant 9-2
RS Robertson 3wins Joe Lennon 22-20 : Jamieson Walker 23-22 : George Plant 21-13
George Plant 1win Jamieson Walker 26-2
Joe Lennon 1win George Plant 13-12
Jamieson Walker 1win Joe Lennon 21-17
Alistair Malcolm 5wins Bill Strachan 18-14 : Lorna Dewar 23-7 : Jola Jurasinka 26-3
Hamish Duguid 17-13 : Kevin Wright 19-1
Lorna Dewar 4wins Bill Strachan 19-10 : Jola Jurasinka 26-4 : Hamish Duguid 19-7
Kevin Wright 12-3
Bill Strachan 3wins Jola Jurasinka 23-19 : Hamish Duguid 26-1 : Kevin Wright 12-7
Kevin Wright 2wins Jola Jurasinka13-12 : Hamish Duguid 8-6
Hamish Duguid 1win Jola Jurasinka 14-11
Jola Jurasinka 0win
FINAL Alistair Malcolm bt John Owen 16-13
Time restrictions forced the final to be reduced to 18pt, 2hr, all clips on hoop 5. John hit in first, his approach to hoop 1 left an angled hoop run which he made, only to be told that hoop 5 was the first hoop. Alistair then made good progress with both balls to 4 back. John then made a good break to 4 back with black, Alistair missed his lift turn. John then took blue to peg in his next turn leaving a rush to yellow. At this point scores were level with yellow on penult and red on rover. Alistair again missed his lift turn, but John attempting a long rush across the lawn completely mishit black and ended up close to yellow. Alistair hit in ran penult, rover and pegged out yellow, John missed his roquet attempt and Alistair won by 3 hoops.
Thanks to Hamish as manager and referee, Janice as his assistant on Sunday, Joe and others for setting up and dismantling the lawns and Glasgow Club for hosting the event and providing refreshments.
NTS Regional Staff Croquet Evening
We were approached by Susan Towns with a request to organise a Team Building evening involving croquet on the lawn at Crathes. 4 teams of 2 players each, played a round robin competition of golf croquet with team *Odd Job” ending up the eventual winners. Thanks to Robert and Malcolm for looking after everyone, although they were rewarded with “Pimms” and refreshments during the evening and for the donation to club funds by the NTS Regional staff members.
Visitor from Toronto NSW Australia
Only 3 weeks ago we entertained Pamela Barnwell from Newcastle NSW Australia to Crathes. Last Thursday it was Marilyn Turner from Toronto NSW and her 2 cousins from Aberdeen who graced the Crathes lawn. Thanks to Robert for looking after them during their GC session, with the possibility of 2 new members, her cousins.
Golden Games Croquet
Once again we agreed to host a croquet session for the Golden Games on Tuesday 12 June at Albury Sports Centre. 20 people signed up for the 2 sessions with a few returning from previous years. After some basic coaching they enjoyed a game of Golf Croquet, with several showing interest in returning for a club session. Thanks to Brian B, David G and Judy for helping out on the day.
Spring Golf Croquet Festival
Fourteen members competed for The Sandy Rennie Trophy on Sunday 27th May at Albury Sports Centre. Played in glorious sunshine all day no fewer than 25 GC doubles matches were completed. After the morning session John Owen and Brian Butler were clear leaders. A redraw for the afternoon saw Brian paired with the current holder David Garwood which effectively killed any chance of David retaining his title. John Owen’s hopes received a setback when he lost to Brian and David and were eventually dashed when he lost to a jubilant Sandy and Zosia. After 5 hrs of croquet having won 7 and drawn 1 the clear winner was Brian Butler, who not only received the Trophy, a bottle of Procecco (which he donated for the winner) but also a box of chocolates.
Thanks to Brian Butler for providing the refreshments and winner’s prize, Sandy for presenting the Trophy and everyone for helping set-up the lawns, erecting the club gazebo and tiding up.
Bill Strachan also took this opportunity to present Margaret Aitchison (our far country member from Dingwall) with The Alex Burns Trophy for winning Division B singles last year.
Visitors from Newcastle
Club Captain, Bill Strachan, received an email from Pamela Barnwell asking if she and her husband Derek, from Newcastle, could arrange a game of GC when they visited Scotland sometime in May. Bill replied that the Club would be delighted to arrange a game at Crathes Castle and awaited her reply. Imagine the surprise when it transpired that the Newcastle was actually in NEW SOUTH WALES AUSTRALIA. The game has now taken place in glorious sunshine with Crathes Castle looking its best. We wish both our visitors all the best on their continuing travels.
Balgreen Handicap Alternate Stroke Doubles
On Sunday 13th May, Bill Strachan and John Surgenor were defending their win at Balgreen last year. With 8 pairs competing the format was 22pt, all clips on hoop 3, 2hr 30min duration and a straight knockout draw with losers playing consolidation matches. This gave all couples 3 matches over the day. Conceding 13 bisques against Kevin and Michele Wright, we struggled early on but came good to win 13/10. The semi-final against Charlotte Townsend and Rodger Binks (31/2 bisques) looked all over with both their clips on penultimate and we had just ran one hoop. Croquet is a strange game and slowly but surely we progressed and eventually had a clip on rover and 3 back when time was called. Bill hit in and we ran 3 back and 4 back to win by one hoop 17/16. John then received a call that his mother was critically ill and understandably had to head home. After much discussion it was decided that a final had to take place but Jola and Jamieson pointed out that technically they were the winners. Bill then choose Charlotte as his substitute partner and the final commenced. Jola and Jamieson appeared to have little enthusiasm and even with 4 bisques never posed a threat and Bill and Charlotte ran out comfortable winners 17/10. Hamish as tournament manager then displayed the wisdom of Solomon and declared 3 winners, Bill, Jola and Jamieson each receiving a bottle of wine for their efforts.
Thanks again to Hamish for organising the event and providing refreshments and biscuits during the day
Balgreen One Ball Handicap Tournament
Bill Strachan entered the opening croquet event for 2018 season, the Balgreen Spring One Ball Handicap Tournament. Played at Balgreen Croquet Club Edinburgh on half lawns in very Spring like weather with 17 entries. After the initial open draw, the following matches were decided on your winning percentage. Things were looking good for Bill as he remained unbeaten after 5 matches but several players were on 4 wins and 1 loss. The next round saw Bill suffer his first defeat to Chris Martin but recovered to win his following game and with Chris also winning both were tied on 6 wins 1 loss. A centre peg shoot-out was the normal deciding finish but with adequate time left a re.match was agreed to entertain the players who had stayed on. This time Bill used his 2 and a half bisques to great effect and ran out a comfortable winner.
Thanks again to Balgreen for hosting the event and Hamish for organising and providing refreshments throughout the day.