Sunday 30th April June saw RND’S 2023 Palairet Trophy team take on Bovey Tracey at Libbaton Golf Club. With no bye in the first round this match was played much earlier in the year than previous opening matches. The weather was fair for most of the day and the Course was very soft underfoot with slow, but true, greens.
With quite a number of the superstar players at RND not available the match provided an opportunity to blood some new talent and employ the pairings with full acknowledgement of the current WHS matchplay handicapping system. It appeared to be an inspired tactic as although we did not receive any shots in any of the matches, we were only giving in three of them with the most being given by any RND pairing at 4 shots.
Match Report as follows:
Colwill and Thresher
Match 1 saw reigning JH Taylor Mashie champion Bob Colwill partnered with ‘steady’ Dave Thresher. It is no secret how well Bob has been playing lately and the addition of Dave meant for a very solid opening pairing. However, the boys had their backs to the wall early and down to some solid chipping from the Bovey pair were three down after three holes. Now if there ever was a time to go three down it is after three holes and the pair knew this and just kept playing and hitting good shots. By the time the match had reached the 14th hole Bob and Dave had pulled level and a fine birdie on the 15th meant they went one ahead for the first time in the match. Going down 18 the opponents won the hole and the match was going to sudden death. Halving the first extra hole in par, the boys dogged determination won through on the second extra hole when the match finally ended with the opposition duffing one into the pond, a fine shot from Dave onto the green and a solid putt from Bob and the match was won.
Won 1 up
Sturman and Loze
Match 2 saw the veteran and stalwart pairing of Shaun Loze and Chris Sturman. With the record that the pair hold in the Palairet trophy their pick for the team was nailed on from the beginning and they did not disappoint, doing a demolition job on their opponents. Whether they come up against the pair that are having a bad day or whether they themselves are having another exceptional day these fellows just seem to have the magic touch when it comes to representing the club. The match finished an unbelievable 7 & 6 with Chris commenting at the end that he “felt sorry for his opponents”. Clearly, that wasn’t until after the match finished though!!
Won 7 & 6
Worthington and Fisher
Having won the Victory Foursomes twice in two years Christy Worthington and Gary Fisher once again were selected to represent the club. Another reliable pair of golfers the boys laid a marker down, going three up early in the match and before the 7th hole. Some fine play throughout the middle of the round kept the Bovey pair at bay and the victory foursome champions won their match comfortably on the 16th.
Won 3 & 2
Hughes and Rowe
With a fine showing in this years Bideford Bay foursomes tournament our fourth pairing saw the return to the team of Richard Hughes and Kevin Rowe. Having to give 4 shots on paper this match seemed to be the toughest matchup of the day. The Front nine was a very tight affair with the RND pair edging out their opponents to be 1 up after the front nine. However, a fight back from the opposition saw them claw their way back and when they won the 16th with a shot, they were 1 up. Richard and Kevin managed to keep the game alive but unfortunately ran out of holes and the match was lost 1 down on the 18th.
Lost 1 down
Willoughby and Stone
Our final pairing featured Dean Willoughby and Frank Stone, both new players to the club teams this year. Dean has been in consistent form for a number of months now and ably assisted by Frank a very straight player, both deserved their picks for the team. The confident way in which they went about their business rewarded them well with the RND Pair 3 up after nine holes. Over the course of the back nine the Bovey pair put up a spirited performance and with the two shots in hand somehow managed to gain a half point on the 18th
Match result : RND WIN 3 1/2 TO 1 1/2
A very solid performance from the RND team saw them knock out their opponents and get through to the next round: our next opponents Lion Artisans (Mortehoe) at Yelverton Golf Club.
Many thanks to Keith and Gerald of Libbaton Golf Club for hosting us and for the very warm welcome we received. If you have not played Libbaton lately, it is well worth a visit for the welcoming atmosphere alone.
Thank you to all RND members who turned out to support the team.
Finally, thank you and well done to all the players that took part.
Can't rate Josh highly enough. He is sensitive to the golfer in front of him, adapting his advice and comments to the swing he sees. Backing any comments up with data that is equally as sensitive - a great combo. Josh doesn't try & overhaul a swing and make you feel lost, rather he provides care
Awesome golf course in an unreal setting and very well maintained, highly recommend playing here if you get the chance. Demanding but fair course that makes you think. If you’re getting a caddie ask for Dave, great guy who knows his stuff
At points wide open. The rushes and bushes are what will swallow your ball. The thing that makes this course tricky will always be fighting the wind and judging yardage. Greens true and well paced. Starter was helpful. Clubhouse like a museum of history