20/8/12 Monday. The first qualifying round had to be played on a composite course yesterday. The front nine had too much water laying on some holes not to ignore that the ground was muddy and plugged balls would have been easily lost. A stroke round and championship value it would have been unfair on the possible scores. Hence the decision was made to play the back nine twice as this is up in the sand dunes and not as much effect on the holes by the flooding.
I was in a good mind set and the score was a messy 83 for a nett 70 a par for the back nine as this is 35 gross series of holes. Apart from an out of bounds on the ninth hole two missed putts and one duffed chip shot the rest of the round was played out well enough to my expectations. In the days competition I tied in fourth place. Behind the winner with a nett 66, second place 67 and third a 69 nett there was no regrets in the score, improving on the previous days effort at Kingston was achieved again. I do have a benchmark expectation with the two competitive round weekends I have been playing to prepare for the club championships. Eventually I want to be playing the my handicap or better at both club rounds each day. Improving on the moderately effective first rounds followed by the winning or par at least efforts the next day.
It was also the second round of the Gallerie Trophy and I have now moved to second place over all in this annual club competition won from the best two of three rounds played. Leaders Score is; 78/67=145, mine in 2nd 77/70=147, 3rd 80/69=149 & 4th 81/71=151. This is a little in my mental favour as this is Trophy I would like to win and will be coming out to chase the victory next weekend. My preparation for the championships is more than just playing two competition rounds a weekend in the build up for form. The whole point of playing in genuine club competition is to doing the effort to win in match conditions. The next five weeks of competition are all going to be played to break my handicap standards. That is the only way winning is going to be possible.
The current club champion has just drifted out to an eight handicap I am fluctuating between 11 to 13 of late. Yesterday by good fortune I was again drawn to play in his group and got to compare our game standards in a review this morning. In the same foursome I kept my partners card and noted the champions scores as well on each hole. My front nine of 44 compared to the champions 40. Followed with a 39 alongside his 38 for the back nine. We both had the same number of putts and the major difference was in GIR, I am a marginally better putter with five one putts to his three. Also my driver is 20-40 metres less off the tee and that is a major difference on the par four holes. The game was not a matchplay event so a lot of the game pressure was not there yet the pair of us were competing on a sociable level. On the scores I would have been defeated with a score of -2 on the 18th hole (one down after the 17th). The previous week I was in the same group as the champion as well and the result was the same. I am 4-5 strokes higher in handicap yet closer than last season by 2 strokes when losing on the thirty second of the thirty six holes in the final.
This may seem to some a little silly to have put this effort into getting closer to being able to beat the club champion. To me it makes total sense, the benchmark is a person but the prize is a championship. A victory that I have the good fortune to be able to analyse what is required to be a legitimate competitor in. I am not going to make up the distance off the tee, the ability to hit the green from 140 to 160 metres is a must improve game aspect. As well as maintaing the current putting and chipping standards attained so far. My total physical game standard is still improving and is much better than last season both in ability and condition to be able to play comfortably. The mental aspect of my game is under review as well and has also been conditioned in the preparation of past weeks. Thankyou for your time and attention, “Hit ‘em straight all”