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PGS Press Archives

 

Here we have all the press reports for the current year. Click on a month to navigate and read the reports.

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January

Paul Smith Roars Around Pattavia

The one thing that golfers almost always say about Pattavia Century is that the course is in good to excellent condition. Bearing in mind there has not been much rain around, the ground staff have kept up the standard and, even though the rough is browning, the fairways are green and nice to play from. The greens now are much tamer than recent times but still present a challenge on the downhill putt, as many who three putted found out.

After two no-shows, who indicated they would get to the course themselves, but didn’t, a quick rearrangement of groups was done and thirty golfers set off in much the same weather as per the past week or so. Rick Pope wore the Green Jacket with a good win on Xmas Day and carried that form into today with 36 points to win the ‘B’ flight, but had to survive a countback over Niall Caven who has found some form again. Third place went to Derek Phillips with his score of 34 points, winning a three-way countback.

When you have a low, single figure handicap, as Paul Smith does, you can’t afford many mistakes. Paul’s gross score of 71 suggests that he made few, if any today. That equated to 41 stableford points and the win fine in ‘A’ flight. Phil Davies has been back in form the past few games and has done well again to score 37 points to take second spot. Peter Lacey played his first game at Links at the start of December and has played so well that his handicap has gone from 16 to 14 in that short time. He was there again today with a good score of 36 points, winning third place on countback.
 
Near Pins: Mike Firkin (4), Lachlan Gotz (7), Jim Ferris (13), David Dunne (17).
Best Front Nine (non winners) – Kevin LaBar - 18 pts
Best Back Nine (non winners) – Bill Copeland - 20 pts.

At presentations, Phil regaled those present with the story of ‘Jam Boy” from the time of the British Raj in India. This was due to Rana Gurnam telling stories on the tee boxes during the round. He was in line for the ‘silly hat’ but Phil decided that there would be no ‘silly hat’ or ‘wig’ today, new year and all that.

Paul Smith didn’t return to Links to wear the Green Jacket.  We paid public holiday price today, but it is still a mystery as to why. Do the courses pay penalty rates to staff?

Welsh Triple Crown at Khao Kheow

The first week of 2020 ended with a PLGS flourish at Khao Kheow when 53 golfers played a stableford competition on the A and B nines, in three flights divided at fourteen, 19 and above. Khao Kheow was/is in excellent condition with fairways dry enough to give a lot of run and the greens were the best many old hands could remember. In a word they were magnificent. Consistent and quick, all the golfer needed to do was set the ball rolling on the chosen line. We've not seen greens like that for many a long day.

A strong wind made the golf challenging and scores were typical of Khao Kheow, not excessive and thoroughly well-earned.

In a rare golfing moment the results saw a trio of worthy Celts (thanks "spell check") tie down the top flight places. In the top flight Phil Davies took first place with 36 points, heading Americans Peter Lacey (34 cb) and Aaron Spengler (34).

In the third flight Len Jones took the flight with 37 points, ahead of Helene Lindberg (33) and the other half of the Swedish pair, husband Mikael with 31 points .

The second flight had the best score of the day, 39 points and the Gallic trio was complete when Colin Smith returned his green jacket winning card. In second place was Shabir Hussein (36), impressing in his first week with the group and another Welshman, Willy Brown took third with 34 points.

Near-pins were won by Bill Copeland, Peter Lacey (2), Stuart Thompson, Tony Leng, Dave Arataki, Jamie Booterbaugh and Mikael Lindberg who came within three inches of his second "ace" on the short A5. His relief was obvious when he realised, with 53 golfers out, it would have cost him an arm and a leg had the ball rolled in!

Consolation awards went to Mark Johnstone for his best front nine score of 19 points, and to Dave Robinson for his identical effort on the back nine. In addition Jamie Booterbaugh received the "silly hat" for a nine hole total of six points whilst Dave Rodrigues, wore the wig which Mr Phil suggested, certainly made him a "hansum man". His low score certainly didn't!

2020 had started in memorable fashion and in the words of the three winners today PLGS wishes everyone "Blwyddyn Newydd Dda"!

Anne Stoke’s Green Jacket in First Up Game

The current dry season and lack of rain must make it difficult for greenkeepers to maintain a golf course, but the courses we have played in recent weeks are being kept in terrific condition for our pleasure. I had not been to Pleasant Valley for some time and was pleasantly (excuse the pun) surprised at how good the course looked and played, with nice grass on the fairways and greens running smoothly and with good pace, well done. Once again, we had a big group of 45 players arrive at this course complete with green fee and cart vouchers and ready to go.

A nice, comfortable, breezy day, but a tough course, saw only five scores of handicap or better. The ‘A’ flight had three players scoring 35 points so the countback was required.
Dave Robinson finally broke through for his first win to hold out newcomer to Links, Jean-Pierre Gasser, and Jamie Booterbaugh, who was much happier today after a disaster round a couple of days ago.

In an unusual event for Links, so far, two lady golfers took the first places in two of the flights. Helene Lindberg, a recent winner of two Green Jackets, took out ‘C’ flight with a modest score of 32 points. Stu Thompson has moved back to Aus. after 15 years, but will still visit regularly. He scored a handy 31 points for second spot while Richie McIntosh, who lost his scorecard on Friday but managed to hold on to it today, came in third with 30 points.

The ‘B’ flight produced all five of the top scores with none better than Anne Stokes who was playing her first game this trip. Her 39 points gave her the win and the Green Jacket, the third time in a couple of weeks for the ladies. A four-way tie on 36 points had to go to countback where Thorsten Jodehl took second and sent Billy Buchanan to third place.
Unfortunately for Stuart Kidd and Will Brown they missed out on a place. Stuart did have some consolation by winning Best Front Nine.

Plenty of near pins and a long putt up for grabs.  Near Pin ‘A’ flight: Billy Buchanan (x2), Anne Stokes, Bob Stokes. Near Pin ‘B’ flight: Mikael Lindberg, Thorsten Jodehl, Rick Pope, Larry Slattery. Long First Putt: Mike Firkin.
Best Front Nine “C” (non winners) …. Stuart Kidd….20 pts.
Best Back Nine “A” (non winners) …. Keith Griffith ….21 pts.

After a lowly score and words of encouragement from Phil, Gordon Laviolette wore the ‘wig’. In the absence of anyone doing something too silly, it was decided that Rick Pope should wear the ‘silly hat’ for handing in a very low nine-hole score. With ladies winning the Green Jacket a lot lately, Phil is thinking that we may need to make a Pink Jacket, fairly soon.

Jacket for Jepson but Ace for Lawlor

A golf day at Green Valley is always a pleasant occasion. The course is generally in fine condition, a cooling breeze is always present and the challenge of the holes makes for a tight competition. Wednesday, 8th January was no different as the Pattaya Links Golf Society visited with 34 golfers to play a stableford competition in two flights, divided at fourteen and under.

Staring well before the allotted time good progress was made and the top flight saw Green Valley member Barry Wellings use all his local knowledge to take the win with 38 points, closely followed by Paul Durkan (37), with Mike Ehlert (35) taking third ahead of John Doyle on countback.

The second flight was more spectacular with Englishman Kenny Jepson taking his fourth green jacket, albeit on countback with 40 points, relegating Irish golfer Colm Lawlor into second (40 points). Colm however was not too "miffed" as he achieved his first ever hole-in-one on the short par three eighth. Never has he struck a more telling pitching wedge. Third place went to Colm O'Donovan with 38 points whilst a level par 36 points gave Larry Slattery fourth place. Irish Eyes were smiling as three golfers from the Emerald Isle had found their places on the flight podium.

Technical awards went to Dave Robinson, Lachlan Gotz, Tony Leng and Paul Smith for their near-pins and the consolation awards went to Maurice Roberts for his best front nine of 20 points and Wayne Peppernell's nineteen points on the back nine. Mr Phil used his executive powers to deflect the "silly hat" from himself to the departing Estonian golfer Sergei Kronbergs whilst Gordon Laviolette's travails continued with another wig presentation.

The day ended with Colm ringing the bell in time honoured fashion, not once but twice! That's what it means to score a debut hole-in-one!

Frustrating Day at Eastern Star

Course Heavily Over Booked

Is it a money grabbing exercise or mismanagement, or both? Eastern Star was obviously way overbooked on this Friday and whoever allowed it or authorised it had no thought for player/customer comfort. The first sign was, when our third bus pulled up at 9.50 am, golf bags were standing up by the wall with not a caddie in sight. In the mustering area a very pro-active lady marshal informed us that, as caddies finished on the eighteenth, she would send them to each of our groups in turn.

We were sent to the tenth tee and with that same lady marshal and Maurice ferrying players and caddies to the tee, we got everyone away.

As I turned toward the clubhouse there were crowds of people overflowing inside and outside obviously waiting to play. As many groups of Korean golfers went to the tees our groups were coming through and were dovetailed in between the Koreans. I watched as one Korean lady golfer stood on the tenth tee having practice swings while waiting for the fairway to clear, only to be moved from the tee three times to allow our groups crossing over. Good for us, but can only imagine how frustrating for the lady. She and her group did get started eventually when one of our groups was a bit slow and left a gap.

This course is never known to allow big scores and today from our 51 players, only four played to handicap or better.

The ‘C’ flight produced two of the top scores, 40 points, and had to go to a countback to decide the winner of the Green Jacket. Unfortunately, only one can win and it was Martin Patch, in his first game for a long time, holding out against a great game from Mr. Consistent, Stuart Kidd. Thorsten Jodehl has not replicated his 49 points from a couple weeks ago but did score 33 points to take third place.

“B’ flight also went to countback with two scores of 37 points where Maurice Roberts just nudged Anne Stokes from top spot. Billy Buchanan is fairly steady and made 34 points for third place. On the day, “A’ flight was somewhat of a lack luster affair where the winning score was just 34 points, which gave Bob Stokes the win in that flight, but a win is a win, Bob. Another countback, this time for second and third, gave newcomer to Links, Vic Hansen, a narrow win over that top golfer, Paul Smith, both scoring 32 points.

Plenty of novelty prizes out there and all were claimed.
Best Front Nine “C” (non winners) …. Ahmed Tavir….17 pts
Best Back Nine “A” (non winners) …. David DeCaminada ….18 pts

Gordon Laviolette completed the hat trick of ‘wigs’ by once again having the low score.  Will Brown was called to the tee and wandered over minus clubs, caddie or cart. The lady marshal ferried him back to get his gear. That should have got the ‘silly hat’, but Phil decided that there was too much going on, so instead, Pierre Cere got it for his 7 points on the front nine.

We understand that the ‘high season’ may not last long and course management want to ‘make hay while the sun shines’ We wonder if frustrating a couple of hundred people a day outweighs the cash. One last word: There was one lady marshal who worked tirelessly in helping get our groups set with caddies while, it seemed, many of her colleagues stood around without much interest or seemed overawed by the numbers, or standing around chatting.

This lady worked under much duress, which she should not have been put under. I’m sorry I didn’t get your name as we were so busy, but a big Thank You for your work with us.

 

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