Roll of Honour
Winner – Oliver Saxby QC
Runner Up – Glenn Holmwood
Semi finalists – Ray Wigglesworth QC and David Westcott QC
Results from the rest of the week
Tuesday Tankard Winners: Bruno Bainsfair & Patrick McMorrow.
Tuesday Tankards Runners up – HHJ Phillip St.John-Stevens & George Hamer.
BBA winners: HH Jeremy Carey & Jonthan BelLAMY.
BBA RUNNERS UP: David Westcott QC & Patrick McMorrow.
Matthew Neil Trophy winners: Jeff Lamb & Peter Birkett QC.
Matthew Neil Runners up: Iain Christie & Ciaran Rankin.
Pauline Hollis Winners: Patrick McMorrow & Alysoun Carey.
Pauline Hollis runners up: Simon Coltart & Jill Frances.
Hartley Putter winner: Iain Christie.
Pink’s Cup – TBC.
The results from the Captain’s prize were:
Captain’s Prize winners: Jill Frances & George Hamer.
Captain’s Prize runners up – David Westcott QC & Patrick McMorrow.
Captain’s Prize third place: Glenn HOlmwood & Robert Percival.
Longest Drive: Oliver Woolley.
Nearest the Pin: Jill Frances.
The Captain’s Report on the Final of the 2019 Annual Tournament
28th August 2021 – Rye GC
We convened on the first tee at 8.40 on a blustery, overcast day – Oliver Saxby QC, twice a former winner and Glenn Holmwood, the assistant secretary and a relative new boy to the BGS tournament. They had arrived at the course together, Holmwood having of necessity spent the night at the Saxby home since he had not planned on being in the final and so had nowhere else to go. Saxby (9) was giving Holmwood 3 shots.A small group of Saxby fans gathered at the Ist and as the morning wore on they were joined by BGS members so that by the end we numbered 9!
Saxby drove down the slope at the 1st but a three wood from Holmwood found the very edge of the green in two. Saxby meanwhile had found the rough on the left with his second and some early morning stiffness resulted in slightly untidy putting – Holmwood took an early lead with a five on the only par five on the Old Course.
Saxby hit a low skimmer at the 2nd which finished three feet from the flag. Holmwood, having missed the green left, then chipped across the green and into the bunker and an excellent bunker shot was not good enough for a three. All square.
Holmwood won the third in four, playing immaculate golf after a slightly wayward but long drive to the right of the fairway.
Saxby levelled the match at the notoriously difficult 4th, Holmwood having driven into the dell on the left. All square.
At the par 3 fifth hole Saxby’s drive hit the slope on the left and went down the hill. Holmwood’s three putts from the front of the green were sufficient to win the hole.
Holmwood had the first of his three shots at the 6th but his long drive went across the fairway into semi rough while Saxby’s ball found the middle of the fairway. An uncharacteristically poor chip shot from Holmwood, his third, dribbled into the bunker at the front left front of the green and despite a fifteen foot putt from Holmwood which required Saxby to putt out from 4 feet, Saxby’s 5 was good enough to win the hole. All square once more.
Saxby began to turn the screw at 7th with a dead straight tee shot, the ball landing on the very front of the green. Saxby’s fleetness of foot enabled him to get a ball marker down before the wind could blow the ball back down to the fearsome bunker. Saxby secured par which was good enough, Holmwood having driven his ball to an awkward spot on the far edge of the right hand bunker. Saxby one up.
The 8th was an eventful hole. Saxby, having driven into the hazard to the far left of the fairway, was nevertheless able to play out and from another lie in the rough managed to get close to the front edge of the green. Meanwhile, Holmwood, with the pin right at the back of the green, had gone through the green and down the slope in three. Four putts from there meant that Saxby won the hole in six and went two up.
At the 9th both players drove left into the rough but whereas Saxby’s ball had found a fairly favorable lie, Holmwood’s ball was deep down and although he dug it out effectively, Saxby’s par was good enough for him to go three up at the turn. And so far not a single halved hole. A drive by Saxby into the rough to the left of the 17th green at 10th was not punished by Holmwood whose drive had just found the fairway. Nevertheless, we witnessed the first halved hole in five.
At the 11th Saxby, a Rye member knowing the perils of the gorse bushes lying beyond the fairway, must have taken an iron in order to land in the middle of the fairway. Holmwood’s drive bounced on the fairway and thence into the gorse where it is likely to remain, unretrieved, for some time. A second tee shot went right and down to the edge of the water. Saxby won the hole in regulation four. Four up.
Holmwood regrouped on the twelfth tee after his exertions on the previous hole where he had walked back from the gorse to the tee to take another drive. A long drive to the right gave him a fluffy lie and he took a long iron to great effect, the ball finishing two feet from the hole. His birdie three reduced the deficit to three. Could we be witnessing a memorable fight back?
Holmwood had a shot at the 13th but a wayward short drive into the rough on the left meant he lost his advantage even though Saxby’s drive had gone into the grassy pit to the right of the fairway. An accurate third shot short of the green from Saxby was followed by an iron from Holmwood which finished through the green towards the bell. Hole halved, Saxby in 6 and Holmwood with a gross 7.
At the par three 3 Holmwood played a fine shot, pin high and on the left edge of the green above the waiting bunkers. Saxby’s drive to the right left him that notoriously difficult chip over the sleepers and though he cleared them the ball ran over the green and down the slope at the back . Holmwood secured his par. Saxby did not. Saxby now only two up with four to play. Meanwhile we had been joined by CJ Stephenson plus two dogs and NVM Wilkinson QC plus Ruby so that, with my dog, Treacle, we were in danger of being outnumbered by these four legged friends.
The par four 15th proved to be the critical hole.Holmwood almost had to win it. Both players drove left, the prevailing strong wind coming from their right. Both hacked out of the rough and Holmwood then hit a fine shot to about 6 feet of the flag. Saxby, meanwhile, was at least 20 feet short of the green but an excellent putt meant that he was down in five. Holmwood had to sink a curling putt to win the hole but did not do so. Saxby still two up with three to play.
At 16th Saxby drove to the left side of the bunker and into light rough. Holmwood drove into the bunker but the ball ran to the right and finished on the upslope on the right side of the bunker but not in sand. Saxby played up to the fairway and about 75 yards short of the green. Holmwood, therefore, needed to do better than get out of the hole he was in but instead his ball hit the face of the bunker and went into sand. Three shots later he was at the back of the 16th green and Saxby, had he been required to putt out, would have done so in five. Thus Saxby won 3 & 2.
Both players are to be congratulated for participating in a keenly contested and sporting final in a pretty strong crosswind and after an intensive three days of golfing as well as, in Glenn Holmwood’s case, the demands of running the tournament over three days in the enforced absence of the Hon Sec, which he did with admirable efficiency and good humour.
The party adjourned to the terrace for celebratory and consolatory champagne followed by the prize giving in the clubhouse in which Saxby gave a particular vote of thanks to his supporting groupies. So ended a satisfactory three days in which we had received the very best service from the secretariat and all the staff at Rye.