Sussex Lady Captain’s Invite to Committee

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Winners; Joe Angella of Eastbourne Downs and Jenny Fahy of Willingdon with SLC-SGA President, Bron Morley (centre)

The President of the Sussex Lady Captains and Secretaries Golf Association invites our Committee every year to a game with the ladies as a thank you for entertaining them at our annual match.

This year’s President is Bron Morley  from Pyecombe Golf Club.  Bron decided on a better ball competition off full handicap. Because of the intense heat the competition was played over 15 holes.

The winners with 36 points were Joe Angella from Eastbourne Downs & Jenny Fahy from Willingdon.

Second place with 35 points on count back were Captain, Peter Ward from Brighton & Hove and Nannette Meeten SLC-SGA Captain from Worthing.

Third, also with 35 points were Vice Captain, Phil Williamson from Haywards Heath and Ann Slade the SLC-SGA Vice Captain from Mid Sussex.

After a cold buffet Bron awarded the prizes and SGC President, Neil Smith responded and gave Bron an engraved vase to commemorate the day.

President’s Day at Ifield

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President, Neil Smith presents the salver to Martin Sutton of Copthorne

The balmy summer heat continues…

President’s Day at Ifield was a great success albeit  a slightly smaller field than first published as there were numerous withdrawals due to injury.

A two tee start got things on the way promptly with the help of the two starters, Jane Covey and Alan White. This along with ball spotters, Nadine Tigg and Mike Dearsley on the 10th ensured all tee shots were quickly found.  Our thanks go to all the Ifield members who helped out on the day.

The winner with 40 points was Martin Sutton of Copthorne Golf Club who claimed that this was his first win ever with the Sussex Golf Captains!

Second with 39 points with 24 on the back 9 was Abe Hill of East Brighton.  Third, also with 39 and 21 on the back 9 was SGC Captain, Peter Ward of Brighton & Hove.

Fourth - again with 39 points and 20 on the back 9 was Bob Walker of Copthorne.  Peter Snook of Haywards Heath was fifth with 38 points.

Nearest the pins were;

4th Kevin Hardy (Eastbourne Downs)

6th Terry Vanhinsbergh (Cottesmore)

9th David Schwartz (Pyecombe)

13th Chris Adamson (Cottesmore)

17th Peter Snook (Haywards Heath)

Just before prize giving everyone was treated to Jon Earl’s famous ball sweep and entertaining affair and then Club Captain, Peter Frake gave everyone a belated welcome.

Neil Smith went on to thanks the green staff for preparing the course in great condition and the caterers for a super buffet lunch.

Thanks must go also to Ian Jaggard for assisting Mark Terry with the scorecards.

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The legendary ball sweep

Sussex v Surrey at Seaford

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1st Match - Graham Woolcott Captain, Surrey - Peter Ward Captain Sussex Golf Captains - Graham Horn Surrey - Mike Bennison, Captain Seaford

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Match 2

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Match 3

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Match 4

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Match 5

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Match 6

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Match 7

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Match 8

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Match 9

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Match 10

Sussex win 6 - 4

Sussex v London at Bognor Regis


Another gloriously sunny day, as the London team arrived on the South coast to a warm welcome from Robert, the Captain of our hosts, Bognor. The course, like so many others, was baked hard but the tees and greens were in excellent condition. It was a shame the Halfway House was not open on such a hot day.

After our traditional lunch of sandwiches and chips, the introductions were made by the Captains though many of the London team were known to us as old friends. Thanks must go to local man, Simon Watts, who stepped in to cover for the injured Mark Terry.


And so, it began…


Our Captain, the evergreen Peter Ward, accompanied by home Captain Robert Holland faced some stiff competition from the opposing two Johns from London. (As an undertaker, you’d think Robert would be used to that!). Some excellent golf was played by both pairs, but the early lead established by London could not be retrieved, despite Sussex being 1 over par gross for the back nine, resulting in a 2&1 defeat for the home side.

Next on the tee were Peter Rodger and the aforementioned, Simon Watts. This was another close encounter which started as a slow burner but then sparked into life. Pete suffered a back injury in the early stages but in the tradition of “beware the injured golfer”, came good on the back nine, to edge the contest 2&1.

Third up was the “Professionals” match which featured four single figure handicap players. Our “Bodie & Doyle” were Nigel Wates and Craig Millyard, who just had the better of the “birdie bonanza” to run out 3&2 winners. They had been down in the match to the ever-chirpy John Nugent and Dave Hutchinson but had managed to turn it around.

In the 4th game, Richard Jays and Keith Talbot got off to a flying start, winning six of the first seven holes. Throughout this period, Henry and Paul never lost their sense of fun and were determined to fight their way back. After winning the 8th, they forced the Sussex duo to scramble several halves until they ran out of holes, leaving the home side victorious by 6&4.

Such was the golfing prowess displayed by Kevin Heanen in match 5, that London’s Dave and Mick assumed he was a Bognor member! The President, Neil Smith made his usual steady contribution so, despite a late rally from the visitors (including Mick driving the par 4 17th), Sussex came out on top 2&1.

Vice-Captain Phil Williamson partnered by Dave Harmer performed in match 6. They faced Jim and Tony, two larger than life characters who represented a big challenge. Nevertheless, our lightweights weighed in with a 4&3 win, at which point they retired to the bar where it is believed the London duo completely outplayed them. On the course, Dave had sunk several putts; in the bar Jim and Tony sank several pints! So, everyone enjoyed their day.

Match 7 saw Richard Cowlard in tandem with John Bigsby against a formidable London pairing of Drew and Roger. The away side gradually built up a substantial lead which our chaps could not recover, so London ran out worthy winners 4&3.

Things were much tighter in Match 8, where the Sussex pair of Malcolm Sharpe and Ian “Harry” Potter were in competition with London’s Jim and Dick. With never more than one hole in it, it looked as if the visitors would triumph when Ian drove into a ditch at the 17th. (It should be said at this juncture that Malcolm had not missed a fairway all day!). However, the Sussex spirit of “never-say-die” came to the fore and they won the last to ensure the game was halved.

The penultimate game had Chris Adamson and Tommy Pether representing Sussex against London’s John McMormack and Richard Curtis. (The writer of Blackadder perhaps?) As Chris and Tommy raced into a two-up lead after four holes, London cunningly bided their time, then launched their counter offensive. Sussex cracked under the pressure (how many 3 putts?) and finally capitulated 2&1.

The anchor pairing of Reg Auchterlonie and Mark Dunn faced stiff opposition (literally!) from David and Ken who turned the tables on Wardy’s master plan by beating our stalwarts 5&3. Reg was justifiably annoyed that his opponents’ ability to constantly hole putts meant that they had not read the script!


Thus, the overall result was a narrow victory for Sussex by 5½ to London’s 4½ - success for a second time in five days for our Master Baker.

Bognor’s post-match hospitality was an excellent carvery, followed by a sumptuous array of desserts. The speeches were fortunately brief, Peter’s so much so he forgot to toast our guests (and no joke) whereas John’s featured the humiliation of John Nugent for his casual attire (or should that be no-tie-re) and the celebration of someone’s birthday. Then, we toasted the London team which includes many who are friends from previous encounters. Stories and drinks flowed before we dispersed, London to their hotel; Sussex to their homes.


Keith Talbot


Sussex v Cambridgeshire at Willingdon

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On a warm and sunny Sussex afternoon, and after a fair amount of angst regarding who was playing with whom – and who was likely to turn up – the 2 teams set off after an excellent sandwich lunch. Mark Terry our Hon Sec had damaged his knee - falling off a barstool? –  so local hero and Patron Dave Harmer stepped in to complete the Sussex squad.  Des Malcolm – another diary expert – eventually arrived under the pseudonym of “ Dale Hill” – the name given to him by the Cambridge Captain (how do they choose these people? ).


Anyway let play commence!


Match 1 - featured the 2 Captains.  Our’s was supported by the spritely Willingdon Captain Reg Cork (87 – age not gross score), their’s by the less spritely Mike Rham.  Cambridgeshire arrived with  a team of 15, so Mike played for the opposition.  It was a close encounter played in an excellent spirit with never more than a hole advantage at anytime. With the match all square on the 18th the Captains shook hands and agreed a half.


Match 2  - witnessed “ a lovely game” –  sounds like something my Mother would say – where the home grown talent of Match Secretary Dave Harmer helped secure a 3 & 2 win for Sussex.  Dave’s 4 single puts on the trot was too much for the opposition.  Even though the Cambridge boys fought back hard, our ever reliable Nigel Wates, with Dave’s support, ensured we got home safely.  Well done boys!


Match 3 – The articulate, if diminutive, Harold Knight (how can someone so small eat so much) able supported by big boy Chris Wise started well but rather like the England football team, the evening before, wilted in the second half. Harold mentioned to me he did have one birdie but seemed unable to recall his number of bogeys!  Close match ,which we lost on the last hole – B+ for effort.,


Match 4 – equipment failure when Gordon Eaton’s hired buggy gave up the ghost on the 6th did not bode well for the rest of the game. However, when the going gets tough – the golf gets slower (I was in the 4 ball behind – with one of the Cambridge Captains who shared with us a variety of expletives to express his disappointment regarding the groups collective pace of play.)  I explained we had an elderly President in the group ahead and he should be more respectful – he called me a fibber or something like that! Anyway, President Neil Smith and Gordon stuck to their task to secure a magnificent – if surprising – win! 1 up.


Match 5 – in a word or two the VC and Richard Jays were well and truly taken to the cleaners. Our 15 & 16 handicap opponents finished level par better ball and we required several birdies to keep us halving holes.  Richard contributed several golf balls to the dog walkers of Willingdon. The VC’s burden was so heavy he gave up with backache on the 14th!  We agreed it would be a wise move to retire to the bar early.  Lost 5 & 4 – or rather stuffed!


Match 6 – a most enjoyable game which saw Bryan Fairbrass and Snooky win 5 & 4.  Their opponents started well with a par on the 1st to go one up but the Sussex boys dug deep and with some excellent golf, supporting each other well, pulled away to secure an outstanding victory.  They all decided enough was enough after the 14th and the Cambridge white flag was raised – only to be replaced by several earlier than expected pints of Harveys. Walk out into the countryside or walk in for a beer?  They all made the right choice.


Match 7 – we were very fortunate to discover that both Tony Bauckham and Ian Wood remembered to turn up for this fixture.  At least we got off to a positive start!  Thereafter it was very even over the front 9 but on this occasion our previous absentees relished their appearance and delivered a consistently successful back 9 running out 4 & 3 winners on the 15th green.  2 retired to the bar, 2 played on – an interesting match fact (as the game was over).  Never mind, all in all a good afternoon with the game played in a very good spirit.


Match 8 – Tim Ingram and Des Malcolm (eventually) delivered the final dagger into the Cambridge hearts with another win – I think 2 & 1 but by the time they came in I had savoured a few beers and my notes became somewhat confused.  It was another tight match, which could have gone either way, but a modicum of local knowledge helped the Sussex pair prevail. Having since read Des’s grovelling apology to Dave Harmer, our Match Secretary, he is clearly keen to play again.  Well done Des – or should we call you “Dale” from now onwards!



So all in all a win for Sussex 5½ to Cambridge’s 2½.  Sussex Captain Peter Ward was the grateful recipient of the Trophy and led the team to another famous victory.  Peter rightly commented on the excellent presentation of the course and the fine food and hospitality shown to everyone by the Willingdon team.




Phil Williamson

Vice Captain

Bedfordshire v Sussex at Dunstable Downs


On a bright sunny morning, we arrived at Dunstable Downs with its spectacular views over the surrounding countryside. As with most courses, it was suffering from the long period of dry weather; the fairways hard and biscuit coloured. Greens and tees appeared like oasis in a desert landscape.

When assembled, Sussex had contrived to have 21 players so Mark graciously withdrew to allow Keith Talbot to be included. Bedfordshire had arranged an early start, so bacon roll and tea/coffee was the order of the day. (Note; Mark did have a bacon roll though!)

Introductions made, we departed to a two-tee start and quite literally the heat of battle.


And so, it began…


Our intrepid Captain Peter “Tarzipan” Ward and his Vice Phil Williamson faced a tough challenge against his opposite number from Bedfordshire, Barry and the home Club Captain Mark. Our heroes “ham and egged” (Phil’s quote) well, finishing with a better ball score of 2 over par gross, including 4 birdies. However, the shots given were well used by the Bedfordshire duo, so the result was a well merited half.

Hot on their heels in Match 2 were Richard Jays and Andy Plowright, a solid Sussex pairing. Despite gifting the first to their opponents, a birdie 2 at the second restored their spirits. This exchange of holes proved a constant theme throughout, until our boys finally edged home with a 1up win.

Our old timers, President Neil Smith and Dave “Santa” Wilkins held the third berth. According to Dave, the President had an eyesight issue (alcohol?) so the onus fell on our St Nicholas to keep Sussex in the match. He himself however, had a problem on the 2nd with noise from a balcony overlooking the course, which is at least an original excuse. Things were looking grim but nevertheless our Grandees fought back to record a narrow 2&1 win.

On to the fourth game, which saw Derek May partnered by Keith (extra man) Talbot take on Bedfordshire’s Vice-Captain Chris and his long-time friend Dave. The Sussex combo took an early 2-hole lead but were then met by a birdie blitz from Chris, which resulted in a 3-down deficit at the turn. Derek steadied the ship and gradually reduced the arrears, then Keith joined in with a birdie at 16 and par at 17 to nudge Sussex ahead. Chris then won the last to halve the match; a fair reflection of a tight contest.

In Match 5, Kevin Heanan and Frank Edmonds were heavily defeated by 6&4. They declined to comment after the game.   

The 7th Sussex pairing of Peter Snook and Terry Vanhinsbergh looked a tough proposition for the home County. A sterling performance saw them finish 4 over par gross (apparently including 6 blobs between them) however this was not enough to secure victory as Brian and Mick ensured Bedfordshire gained a half.

In Match 8 Sussex had Mark Dunn and John Maynard so the prospects looked good. However, as with England in the World Cup, they lost to a late score as their opponents won the 18th to register a win. It had been an even game throughout, played in good spirit with just the wrong result.

The penultimate game involving John Kinnear and the now-visible Tony Bauckham, saw them overpower their local opposition. This was no mean feat, given that one of them had been a paratrooper who had a reputation for despatching the enemy! Steady play with 2 birdies thrown in meant our Sussex “Home Guard” were 3 up at the turn which despite losing the 10th (Beds.’s first winning hole) they turned into a magnificent 5&4 triumph.

So, to the anchor match featuring Joe Angella and Ken Penfold. This again proved to be another closely fought affair with Joe in outstanding form. The Bedfordshire lads did complain that he kept chanting “Take an extra club, Ken” but it seems only they could hear him. The home side ran out 2&1 victors; one of whom was later heard to say to Ken “after the way you played, I wouldn’t prepare a victory speech” A little harsh perhaps?


The result of all this was a narrow overall win for Bedfordshire by 5½ to 4½, and the reflection of might have been. Bedfordshire were magnanimous hosts, providing a first-class dinner and plentiful libation. After Barry delivered a few words, Peter spoke well, told a joke and awarded Bedfordshire the trophy, followed by a toast to them. This prompted Barry to remember to toast his visitors!

Then followed the long journey back to Sussex without the trophy ... ah well, perhaps next year…. or the year after!!  


Keith Talbot

Sussex v SLC-SGA at Haywards Heath

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Another beautiful day for our Annual Match v The Sussex Lady Captains at Haywards Heath.  Captains’ Peter Ward and Nannette Meeten agreed on just two adjustment shots (being the difference between the standard scratch of white and red tees).  The pairings were carefully considered so no pair were giving away a huge amount of shots.

This clearly worked well for the ladies as they prevailed by winning 7 - 3  perhaps the intense heat got to the men?  or were they simply outplayed by a strong ladies team?

At lunch the Club Captain, Mitch Clark welcomed everybody and said the words that echoed in your head whilst on the course “you have to hit it straight at Haywards Heath and that might not be straight enough”

After a superb dinner the Captain’s exchanged gifts and Peter handed over the Joe Lee Salver.  Joe’s Daughter, Carole was invited by the ladies to play in the match and indeed played a part in their victory.

Peter had prepared three Gateaux for everyone’s enjoyment and proudly distributed a slice to one and all whilst coffee was served.

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