Sussex v Hampshire at Piltdown 2019

Wednesday, 29 May 2019

After arrival on a cloudy day, lunch was served, followed by normal team introductions by skipper Phil and the Hampshire Captain Shane Dickson. Just as we started to get ready to play the rain started and never stopped all afternoon. Rather a spoiler for such a friendly encounter.

Match 1. -As always Sussex were led out by Captain Phil Williamson and Trevor Burgess (immediate Past Captain of Piltdown). Nip and tuck for 7 holes but 1 up. Then the home pair accelerated to 5 up, mainly because the Hants boys struggled in the heather. Eventual score was 4&2 to Sussex.

Match 2. -Had ever reliable Nigel Wates and Bob Walker in a buggy (rather handy for Nigel) Apparently, they stopped after 8 holes to recount the scores as they were not sure if they were 4, 5 or 6 up (now who's showing off), promptly lost the next 2 holes but ran out winners 5&4.

Match 3. -Vice Captain, Keith Talbot and Richard Jays had a very even match to start but went to 3 down at the turn. Fight back began to all square, only to lose the last and the match 1 down. Amusing quote from the Hants pair:- Martin Bennettd escribed his partner's (Brian Mortimer) 2 on the 7th as "not bad for two miss hits!".  Lost 1 down.

Match 4. -Immediate Past President, Neil Smith, and "Santa" Wilkins ran away on the front 9 to get to 5 up, a fight back ensued but the heather defeated the opposition for our two to run out 3&2 winners.

Match 5. -The Eastbourne boys, or large and small, Joe Angella and Harold "Gladys" Knight had a close match, thanks to “Gladys" picking up his ball when he had a putt to win the hole.  “Good company although sometimes lacking in sympathy" was Joe's quote. Sussex win 2&1.

Match 6. -Secretary, Mark Terry, and Terry Vanhinsbergh were under the cosh from the start being 3 down after 4, this despite Terry V. paring holes. By the turn the rain got the better of Mark and he retired "wet ".  Terry V. battled on but lost in the end 6&5.

Match 7. -The comment from our pair of Tony Philippou and John Featherstone was :- "Weather appalling like our golf - more truthfully mine". Not sure whichone wrote that! In the end ran out losers 2&1.

Match 8. -Introduced by Phil as his bankers - but more like ...kers was the comment from Ian (Harry) Potter. He and Chris Adamson got to the turn only 1 down, despite Paul Martell being only 3 over at that stage. The back 9 got to Ian and Chris as several 3 putts each crept into play. Fighting back from 3 down Sussex looked to be winning the 17th  (to go 1 down) but the afore mentioned Paul sank a 20ft putt to halve the hole and clinch a 2&1 win for Hampshire.

Match 9. -Reg Cork and Eric Hardwick also commented "lousy weather" but great company. Eric also mentioned that Reg smiled all the time even when missing a 3ft putt for a birdie. Not much else to say probably explaining a 3&2 loss.

Match 10. -John Maynard and Peter Rodger (a substitute that morning) had a very enjoyable game despite some industrial language. One of our pair (no name mentioned) played out of his skin to enable a Sussex win 4&3.


The post-match dinner was a very generous lamb shank followed by a choice of sweets (including cheese and biscuits luckily for me). Dinner was followed by traditional speeches from Captain Phil, Past Club Captain, Trevor and Shane Dickson from Hampshire in which the drawn result was announced as the third onthe trot. Then would you believe it on the way home the rain stopped!

Ian Potter