London v Sussex at Enfield 2019

Friday, 5 July 2019

It was a beautiful sunny Summer’s day as we all successfully negotiated the M25 to arrive at Enfield, relaxed after an uneventful journey. Actually, not quite all, as our esteemed President Ian “Woody” Wood, having tried to recreate the driving style of “Top Gear”, kerbed his very nice car. This resulted in wrecking two wheels and an anxious wait for his friends from AA. (Note Not the ones you’re thinking – the motoring ones. They were quick but then he is a “GOLD” member!). They called up a mobile tyre fitting crew who, despite the damage, only needed to replace the two tyres. 

A much-relieved Woody was pleased to be operational again but looked decidedly pale having been “relieved” of £400 for the privilege. It felt like open wallet surgery to a Yorkshireman.

Meanwhile, the rest of our team and the geezers from London were enjoying a cold buffet of excellent quality. Captain Phil Williamson and Match Secretary, the incomparable John Nugent announced the match pairings. John clearly deeming Match 5 unimportant as he skipped over it. That said, he redeemed himself by organising water for every player on their first tee. 

And so, it began…

First out, Captain Peter Cansick and Captain Phil were supported respectively by local Enfield Captain Jonathan Foster and our Sec Mark Terry, in what looked likely to be a close match. So, it proved to be, the close encounter settled only in the last two holes, sadly in favour of the home side by 2up. Jonathan endeared himself to the Sussex pair by providing a running commentary throughout the game – unfortunately neither Phil nor Mark could find the mute button! Maybe he thought he was being helpful…..  

Second up was the Yorkshire tea drinking duo, Vice-Captain Keith Talbot and Immediate Past Captain Peter Ward. Facing Keith’s opposite number, Alan Hill and partner Dave Alldread, the first nine holes saw Pete in majestic form and Keith less so. Indeed, walking to the 10th tee, Pete appeared to be humming Leo Sayer’s “I’m a one-man band” as they led by 1 hole. At last, Keith started to contribute, culminating in a net birdie on the SI one hole putting them 3 up. A great par by Pete on the 16th closed out the match to register a 4&3 victory.

And so, to the third game, which saw Andrew Newman and Derek May battle London’s mighty “Daves” – Stiff opposition indeed! The locals missed several chances to build a lead on the front nine but powered ahead coming home, despite two birdies from Mr May. The resultant 2up victory gave London another point. 

And so to Sussex’s equivalent of the Andy Murray & Serena Williams pairing, Andy Plowright and Nigel Wates in the fourth match. Playing London’s “Tiddymen”, the warning signs were evident early on as the visitors lost the first, then the second …

ultimately crashing to a 6&4 defeat. They were apparently speechless after the contest? so what can I say. 

(Ed note: I may have misheard the Captain, but I thought he said they were a pair of bankers – presumably he was expecting them to win!) 

Fifth out and last off the first, were that ever-reliable pairing of Dave Schwartz and Mark “The Special One” Dunn, who avoided the Snare set for them by London. By demonstrating their mastery of the greens, (they were quickish), they outplayed their hosts to notch up a 6&4 success for Sussex. 

Match 6, the first off the 10th tee, had the barely recovered Woody in tandem with Dave “Santa” Wilkins. Early exchanges were even but then despite going behind, they avoided the wheels coming off. Gradually they found the accelerator, kept the show on the road, except for the odd ditch, and steered themselves home to a 4&3 Triumph. Wheely well done! especially Santa who has a great winning record this year. 

Different story in Game 7, where Ian “Harry” Potter and Ken Penfold were not so fortunate. This was another close encounter, the hosts narrowly ahead at the turn. They stretched this to 3 up but a magical comeback from Sussex’s P combo was thwarted on the 17th when London sank a 20ft putt, to record another home success by 2&1. 

In Match 8, Sussex had its “walking wounded” only they were actually in a buggy! Mitch Clark and Tommy Pether, the latter a former Enfield member, edged out their London opponents for a well deserved 2&1 victory. Much banter was in evidence throughout the contest as all four players were Londoners (North & South) – bet Tommy mentioned Arsenal at least 10 times!

Featured in the ninth game, were the two Sussex rookies, Peter Brookshaw and Bill Milford, eagerly looking forward to their challenge against London’s Irvine and Roger. It was a rude awakening to “Captains” golf as “Pedro the bandit” and the “Highlander” never gave our lads a chance and registered an 8&6 home win. Still, in an odd sort of way it was fun, and no-one said it would be easy……

The final encounter had Ian Frampton and the venerable John Benoy up against our old friend John Nugent and his no doubt hand-picked partner Dick McDaniell. According to Mr B, Sussex were fortunate to be all square after 9 holes but eventually they succumbed for London to secure a 2&1 victory. John B did describe his London adversaries as “charming company” so perhaps the heat was getting to him! Then again, he is eighty something!

(Ed note: Seriously, well played Mr Nugent – our paths will cross again…….) 


The post-match hospitality was again first class – a great credit to Enfield both for the course and the catering. Home Captain Jonathan’s few words extended to a bizarre toast whilst both Captains Peter and Phil were witty and brief, thanking everyone involved for such an enjoyable day. 

Back in the car, Pete’s Sat Nav was still sulking ……….. 

Keith Talbot