Dodd and Yuill to the fore
Thetford Golf Club held the final event of the Winter Pro-Am series last week with Lawrence Dodd and John Yuill to the fore.The April event is the championship meeting and as such is played as a singles medal event for both amateurs and professionals.
Thetford Golf Club held the final event of the Winter Pro-Am series last week with Lawrence Dodd and John Yuill to the fore.
The April event is the championship meeting and as such is played as a singles medal event for both amateurs and professionals.
Despite a poor weather forecast, Thursday dawned as a beautiful day and even though there was one large clap of thunder as the early players teed off, it was a glorious day on the golf course.
In the Pro's Medal Lawrence Dodd showed good form again. Four birdies, including three in a row on 16, 17 and 18 were offset by bogeys on the 14th and his final hole.
Ben Kerr, starting at the 14th, was two under as early as the 17th. He then had a disastrous double bogey on the par three third hole, but then showed great character to eagle the sixth and birdie the long-par four seventh hole.
Only a bogey on the ninth, the most difficult hole on the course, stopped Ben from winning for the first time this year.
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Another player who eagled the sixth hole was Richard Beadles who came in joint third with Caroline Grady, who would have paid handsomely for an eagle on the sixth as her bogey six came at her first hole of the day.
Also in joint third was Andrew George, who also bogeyed the sixth and the par five 10th, both holes on which he would expect to record no worse than five.
One pro who will be cursing his luck is the hugely-experienced Robin Mann, who was one under par with five holes to play, only to have his trusty putter snap off at the neck on the ninth hole. He continued his round putting with a hybrid, but recorded two bogeys for a 73.
For the amateurs, this was their chance to show what they could do playing on their own for the first time in the season.
There were 20 magnificent prizes for the field of 66 to play for. As usual the top of the leader-board was tightly packed and only five shots covered the top 25 players.
The best nett score of the day was 71 and three players tied on this score. In these circumstances there is a countback over the last nine holes and it was six-handicapper John Yuill from Newmarket who had the strongest finish.
In fact, he only dropped one shot against par on his final 11 holes, including two gross birdies.
Coming in second was Malcolm Dowling, who played extremely steadily, recording the 12 bogeys he should do off his 12 handicap, but also birdied the 14th hole to record a score of one under his handicap.
The final player to record a nett score of 71 was Thetford's own, Harold Ham. He had a birdie four on his last hole, the 13th, to jump eight places into third.
Mention should go to Mark Stannard, from Thetford, who looked in pole position to be the day's winner when he stood three under his handicap with four holes to play, only to double bogey both the 10th and 13th and also made a quadruple bogey on the 12th hole. If only he could have just recorded two bogeys on his last two holes, he would have been the day's winner.
The Pro-Am will now take a rest until the first round of the 2009/2010 season in October.
Application forms will be sent out to all current members in the summer and anyone interested in joining should contact Gary Kitley at Thetford Golf Club.
Championship Pros' Medal results: 1= Lawrence Dodd (Thetford) and Ben Kerr (Saffron Walden), 70; 3= Richard Beadles (Royal Worlington), Caroline Grady (Dunston Hall), Andrew George (Ely), 72.
Amateurs' Medal: Best gross, Jody Greenall (Ely City), 74; 1 John Yuill (Newmarket) 77-6-71; 2 Malcolm Dowling (Saffron Walden) 83-12-71; 3 Harold Ham (Thetford) 82-11-71.