|Maitland Mutual Heritage Association Carnival|
13-15 Apr 2009
Maitland Croquet Club
Maitland Croquet Club’s annual association singles tournament was held over Easter Monday 13 April to Wednesday 15 April, 2009. The event attracted 26 players from Cammeray, Milton-Ulladulla, Newcastle, Toronto, National Park, EDSACC, Strathfield, Forster, Taree, Mosman and the local club Maitland.
Brian Manton concentrates while
Fred Harvey watches on
Handicaps ranged from -0.5 to 18 and were drawn in four blocks; blocks A and B containing 7 players each, and blocks C and D 6 players. Those players participating at Maitland for the first time were very impressed with the lawns and the hospitality of Maitland Club and have vowed to return next year.
Early registration was available on the Easter Sunday afternoon and the lawns were open for practice at the same time. Half a dozen players took advantage of the balmy afternoon for a try out of the well-kept lawns in a picturesque setting.
As it was not possible to obtain full-time referee for the three days many experienced and qualified players generously offered their services to referee the higher-handicapped players. This was much appreciated by the organisers and players however there still exists a need for more players studying their rules and becoming at least an umpire.
Max Wiltshire from National Park
runs a tidy hoop
Play began at 8:30 am each day and after three, two and a quarter hour sessions, was due to finish at 4:30 pm. This allowed twenty four games to be played each day and a total of 72 games over all. A lot of competition in anyone’s language.
After end-of-play on the first day, nibblies, liquid refreshments and a BBQ were enjoyed, after which some players took advantage of the opportunity to play ricochet under lights which was a very resounding success.
Pam Gentle certainly enjoyed playing
well on her home lawns
Following play on the second day quite a few competitors tried their hand at a game of "jet". Competition was fierce and enjoyable with many keen to introduce that branch of croquet to their club. It seems croquet players simply cannot get enough of their favourite sport.
Block A was made up of experienced title-holders from the sport and provided excellent spectating for those lucky enough to watch.
Part of the crowd at the presentation
Martyn Prins from Mosman was the eventual winner of Block A with an undefeated six games under his belt and a very controlled exhibition of association croquet to his credit.
John Levick (National Park) winning five games was a close second. Local favourite Pam Gentle displayed some of her graceful style of play to register a few painful defeats to others in the block, however National Park stalwart Max Wiltshire, was able to stem her push for the podium and she had to settle for a creditable third.
Block A winner..
Block B was won by Stephen Howes (Cammeray) with an undefeated six games of impeccable croquet. Runner-up Pam Ingham (National Park) winning four games was ecstatic as she had played very few games over the last few months and was "a little rusty" going into the tournament.
Joan Boyle listens
to Pam Ingham’s
Maitland player Peter Smith won Block C with an undefeated 5 games closely followed by Jill Manton from Toronto who won 4 games and was unlucky not to have defeated Peter in their match.
Trevor Black, a Maitland member who has only been playing a little over 12 months convincingly won all 5 games to take out Block D. Trevor is showing great promise and will improve even further rather rapidly if his tournament results are an indication.. The runner-up in that block was Tony Jones from Forster with 4 games to his credit.
MCC president, Lynn Dooley
presents Trevor black with his
award for winning Block D
A number of handicap changes resulted from the tournament and all players seemed to have had en enjoyable experience. It is hoped the tournament will grow even more next year and if the quality of the field is matched in 2010, competition should be excellent.