Club tournament results

Sweet Pea Golf Croquet Tournament
7-9 Mar 2010
Maitland Croquet Club
"Give me strength," cries Dennis after missing by millimetres
Glorious weather prevailed for this unusual event. Originally held on St Patrick’s Day, the tournament was called the "Sweet Pea" by Robyn Wallace, as it was traditionally the day to plant sweet peas.

This doubles event is also unusual in that it consists of 2 rounds, the first of level play and the second under handicap conditions. Not often is there an opportunity for players to match themselves under these two conditions in the one tournament. What an opportunity to "get even!!!"

68 players from as far a field as Urunga, Sydney, Newcastle, Cammeray, Canberra, Macquarie City, Taree, Wollongong, Blue Mountains, Port Macquarie, Toronto, Jamberoo, Hurstville, Mount Sugarloaf, Branxton, Killara and Maitland took part.

Players were divided into 6 blocks for the 3 days. Block A had 7 pairs of players with handicaps stretching to 5 but most were 2’s and 3’s. As you could imagine play in this block was pretty intense. When Jumping Joe Dimech is relegated to Block B the field has got to be very hot. Blocks B and C were composed of 6 pairs and blocks D,E and F were composed of 5 pairs.

Competition was really fierce in all blocks with many surprises especially at the way players have learnt to handle extra turns.

Margaret and Lynn ponder their next shot
Practice and early enrolment took place on Saturday, however not too many players availed themselves of this facility although conditions were very pleasant.

Play began promptly at 8:30 am under very favourable conditions after the usual briefings and instructions.

Bev Smith organised a wonderful field of dedicated referees who kept all players on the straight and narrow and added to the esteem and integrity of the event. Maitland Club’s traditional organisational skills were demonstrated again and the kitchen excelled with tasty foods for hungry players and workers.

Lawns were a little more forgiving than in previous events due to the effects of the new watering system, however woe betide the hoop shot that was a little careless. The hoops still showed no mercy.

Winners of Block A, Stephen Dilley (Jnr) and Barry Wells
accept their prizes from
Star Realty Maitland’s Stuart Boyton
New sponsors "Star Realty Maitland" certainly had plenty of exposure and a great welcome to the sport. Thanks for the confidence and hopefully we’ll see you again during the year.

Barry Wells and Stephen (Junior) Dilley blitzed block A and only dropped one game to Barbara Piggott and Stephen (Senior) Dilley in the level round. John Levick and Nick Macoun dropped 2, as did the team of John Compton and Peter Smith and that of John Martins and Graham Dark. The fight was on for second place.

The Handicap round played lots of tricks with all but Barry and Stephen who won all six of their games and Pam and Dennis who only dropped 1. John and Nick won 4 while the remaining teams could only manage token resistance in the face of the onslaught.

John Levick admonishes himself
after one of those "unlucky shots"
As was expected Joe and Lyn Dimech cruised through the level play round to lead the teams of Bernie McAlary and Bill Haines and Margaret Seers and Lyn Hayes in block B. However the handicap rounds were not too kind to the Dimech family. The old dark horses in the form of Bob Hokin and Bob Eyre won all their 2nd round games to take out the overall result followed by the Macquarie City girls Margaret and Lyn) and the consistent Shirley and Kevin Page into 3rd place.

Block C was a nail biter of the highest order. At the end of the level play round 3 teams were on 3 games and 3 teams on 2 so only net points separated them. Pat and Dot Moroney ensured their long drive from Jamberoo was not in vain to lead at this stage. Close behind were Jack and Ingrid Cohen followed by John Purnell and Rita Murphy.

A great rally in the handicap section saw Jack and Ingrid surge to the overall lead by winning 4 of their 5 games while Pat and Dot won 3 to come 2nd overall. Bill and Cynthia Hardie played consistently to win 3 games in the handicap section and in doing so filled 3rd spot. `

Max Hird and Sue Phillips, two new players at Maitland club, lead at the end of play in the level play section of Block D. Close behind were Trish Nitschki and Sue Agius narrowly leading Margaret Pedemont and Alan Graham.

Bill Haines and Bernie McAlary
ponder the difficult shot lying ahead
John and Katherine Love would stand for none of this and put in a very determined result in the handicap section to win all their games and take over 2nd place overall but were unable to shake the consistency of Margaret and Allen who managed 3 wins to take 1st place. Trish and Sue were excited to retain their third spot.

Bob Eyre and Bob Hokin summon their cunning and guile
to plan the downfall of their opposition
Block E was a sea-sawing battle among all the players. The level play section saw Mt Sugarloaf’s pair of Brenda Wild and Ron Bell victorious over Branxton couple Greg and Anne Freeman closely followed by Macquarie City's lovely Lorraine Craig and rapidly improving Alan Joass. Brenda and Ron had a dismal handicap section and saw the lead go to Maitland pairing of John Pace and Robyn Compton followed by the Freemans and Lorraine and Alan. The final story showed Ann and Greg too good (just) closely followed by John and Robyn (net of 10 different) and then Lorraine and Alan.

A great level play result boosted Allan Garret and June Muston’s overall chances of success in Block E. Jan Ingham and Lynn Reardon filled 2nd spot and Cathy Hurst and Ellen Jones sneaked into 3rd. The handicap section caused even more turmoil and confusion by allowing Cathy and Ellen to win that section ahead of Moira Burgman and Lynn Dooley followed by Jan and Lynn.

Popular couple, Margaret and "Tommy" Thompson
always ready to help and assist.
Margaret has become a regular referee
at Maitland’s Sweet Pea for many years
This mixed the final result pot to show Allan’s and June’s lead too strong. Maitland’s Cathy and Ellen followed in second place and Jan and Lynn finished third.

A delightful three days finished with an outdoor presentation ceremony where the sponsor met and chatted to prizewinners and competitors.

Many happy memories went home with the photos and result sheets and for those lucky enough a pleasing amount of cash.

Once again many thanks go to all those people who worked behind the scenes to make things happen. Trev Black had a very rewarding and educational experience acting as tournament manager for the first time and very capably directed events and people so that a rewarding time was had by all.