As some of you will have noticed, this is not an informational blog – I think that’s a proper word (informational, not blog, for my ultra picky friends out there – and, believe me, I have a few; don’t we get the friends we deserve – or is that the leaders? Aaaaaagh….). I did look up the dictionary (my trusty Chambers) but couldn’t find my glasses and am now getting to the (st)age where squinting is inadequate, so I’ll elaborate: this is not the place to come if you want to know what’s on where, when.
There are, of course, exceptions and I am pleased to confirm that the Curtis Cup, conked by Covid this year, has been rescheduled for 2021, at Conwy, north Wales, from September 3rd-5th. This is OFFICIAL. Not an unchecked acceptance of a friend’s dates for the rescheduled match, which I passed on a few weeks ago, only to get ticked off from on high – well, St Andrews, which may be at sea level but is pretty elevated when it comes to matters golfing.
The Women’s Amateur and the Amateur Championship are scheduled to go ahead in August but who knows? Anything could happen between now and then.
Watching the golf from Hilton Head on the telly last week, I couldn’t really understand why the players – and officials – felt the need to fist bump or elbow bump or whatever. Why touch at all, especially now that several players and caddies have tested positive for the virus? I can understand footballers hugging in a fit of excitement after a goal, though perhaps even they could learn a bit of restraint – and managers have no need whatsoever to touch at the end of a game. A bow or a bit of a wave should be more than enough.
Now, going against the grain, here’s another bit of information. It’s aimed at the golf-playing senior women who read this blog – there are a few, thank you all. The Brenda King Foursomes, ditched by England Golf before the virus hit, have been resurrected by Janet Davies, nee Melville and friends and is due to be played at Minchinhampton GC in Gloucestershire on October 1st and 2nd.
Janet, British champion in 1987, was very disappointed that England Golf had decided not to run the event any more, particularly as there are so few national events for seniors to play in. In addition, Janet said, “Brenda was a Lancashire lass and being a Lancashire lass myself, I did not want her memory to be lost.” She set out to “save the BK Foursomes”, set up a tournament committee, rounded up 30 entries before lockdown and is keen to persuade more people to enter, in the hope that life will have returned to something approaching normal and the competition will be able to go ahead.
I played in the event in 2017, at Harrogate, drafted in as a late sub and it was great fun. Hard work but great fun. I love foursomes but foursomes stroke play might well be the toughest format there is. There’s no hiding place. If one of you isn’t quite on her game, returning a decent score is well-nigh impossible but you just have to grind it out. In the first round, my long-suffering partner played well but my mediocre play wasn’t helped by an inability to hole a putt of any length. We did manage to break 100 – a lot of pairs didn’t – and fortunately my partner, a bit of a putting guru, who was still speaking to me, gave me a tip that worked, so we improved on the second day despite the monsoon-like conditions and finished respectably in the middle of the field.
Solheim Cup, Ryder Cup, any number of team captains spend hours agonising over their foursomes pairings but I’ve always thought that the key is compatibility – at some level the partners have to get on. They don’t have to like each other necessarily, their games don’t have to match necessarily but they do have to rub along, there has to be a connection of some sort and it’s probably best that they don’t deeve the life out of each other. For instance, Ronnie White, a fairly quiet, intense Englishman, who hit the ball pretty straight and Joe Carr, a much more outgoing, flamboyant Irishman, who knew where the boondocks were, made a formidable Walker Cup partnership.
Dai and I, married for nearly 25 years, played a lot of golf together but foursomes? Forget it. We’d be lucky to last a hole. We just approached the game in a completely different way and sharing a ball didn’t work.
That’s another of my favourite photos of Dai and me, taken on a long-ago birthday (of mine). Since it was my birthday on Wednesday, I could probably work out how many years ago it was but some calculations just aren’t worth doing! Jet-setting is no longer on the agenda but I did play golf – 9 holes early in the morning before it got too hot – and it set me up for the rest of the day. Thanks to everyone for their cards and good wishes, though, come to think of it, not a single card mentioned golf. The example below is more representative….