Best time to play

Picture: File

A LOT of golfers will tell you April and May can provide the best conditions to play golf locally and Saturday was a perfect example at the Mount Gambier Golf Club.

The Nutrient Ag monthly medal played under stroke round attracted 106 men.

Jud Wheatley (12 handicap), has been in red-hot form with his golf of late and continued this through to Saturday.

He posted a 6-under net 66 after shooting pairs of 39 on the front and back nines for 78 stokes in total.

Birdies came on the first, third and ninth holes, with the only real blemish being a double-bogey five on the par 3 eighth.

Four bogies, four pars and a birdie on the tough par 4 14th hole enabled Wheatley to be the clear overall winner and stake his chance to take out the Barney Larkin Trophy next year.

In A Grade (-9 – 10) Jon Clayton (8) was victorious with a 77 off the stick for a net 69.

Clayton’s score was set on the front nine with 35 off the stick, which included an eagle-2 on the par 4 second hole, plus a birdie on the par 4 ninth.

A slight stumble on the 10th hole saw Clayton make a double-bogey, before he regained his form to finish the round.

Runner-up in A Grade was Richard Gosling (2), shooting an even-to-card 72 for a net 70.

Gosling’s day started off roughly with a double-bogey seven on the par 5 opening hole, before he got his swing back together.

Runner-up to Wheatley in B Grade (11-16) was Stephen Stott (16) with a net 71 to be one under his handicap.

C Grade (17-45) saw another golfer who has been in good form at the top, with Phil Walters (19) carding the second-best score of the day with a four-under net 68 after shooting 87 off the stick.

Walters fired three pars and 15 bogeys to play consistent golf throughout his round.

Taking out second spot was David Millard with a one-under handicap net 71.

The ball rundown went down to 77 on count-back and included 35 balls.

Pro shots went to Moryn Sullivan (7) on the eighth hole and Paul Reade (9) on the 16th.

While we always applaud the winners, it is also important from to time to acknowledge those who have had struggles on the golf course.

As it was a stroke round, the players do not get the opportunity to pick up the ball at any stage, with some high scores recorded throughout the day.

While not trying to rub salt into anyone’s wounds, there were some very notable examples.

Without naming them, these golfers will know who they are and no doubt their playing companions will be more than happy to elaborate on their battles.

JS (21) posted a 15 on the par 3 10th hole and PE (16) took 13 on the Par 4 14th, but were not the only golfers to write double figures on their score cards.

AR (39), MT (19), TG (11) and PK (12) all had 10’s, while CW (16) and CB (22) had 11’s.

A special mention to TB (23) who had a 10 and an 11 on the front nine.

Thursday a field of 85 contested the stableford competition in ideal conditions.

Of the 85, there were only 10 percent who were able to play to their handicap or better.

Local radio manager Patrick O’Donnell (2) was the standout player, shooting an impressive four-under the card off the stick to rack up 42 points.

The points were evenly split between his front and back nines, with 21 apiece.

O’Donnell was three-under on the front nine, with birdies on the first, fifth, seventh and eighth holes.

The only tarnish was a bogey on the fourth hole.

Steady golf on the back added another two birdies and once again a single bogie on the 16th hole.

Only three points behind O’Donnell on 39 points, Tony Bolton (28) and Peter Emetlis (15) required a count-back to determine the runner-up.

The count-back went in Bolton’s favour, a different result to a few weeks ago, when he lost second spot on a count-back.

With splits of 19 on the front and 20 on the back, he edged out Emetlis who recorded 21 and 18 across the nines.

Don Coulter (20), Bob Tonkin (24) and Wayne Davidson (14) all compiled 37 points, while Peter Waters (9), Mark Teakle (33) and Mike Griffiths (15) all matched their handicaps with 36 points.

To earn a ball you required 34 points or better on a count-back.

Pro shot winners were O’Donnell on the eighth hole and Kym Sutherland (11) on 16.