Last Tuesday, 16th July, Tenby seniors held their annual Open Day and what a glorious day it was. Continuing the recent spell of warm weather local and visiting golfers enjoyed wall-to-wall sunshine. Those who tackled the course in the morning enjoyed just a gentle breeze. Those who ventured out in the afternoon had to cope with a livelier version as the southerly wind picked up. This made the front nine more of a challenge.
The comments from many visitors echoed what Tenby members already knew. The greens were superb while the fairways were firm, dry and fast. If you found yourself in the rough then you faced a problem shot to release the ball from it, sometimes necessitating a couple of attempts. One or two visitors who had not played the course before remarked that they were sometimes at a loss as where to go from green to the next tee.
All, however, were full of praise for the hospitality and the organization. This was down to Seniors’ secretary, David Rees, who was in overall control, organizing the tee times and ensuring everything was in place for a successful day. A supportive committee, along with a gang of willing volunteers made sure that, from start to finish, the passage of players from arrival to departure was a seamless one.
One hundred and sixty-one players were signed up to start. Unfortunately a couple had to withdraw on the day but that still left a record number of one hundred and fifty eight to tee off. The last trio out were only five minutes behind schedule, thanks to the efficient organisation. One who didn’t tee off was Richard Davies. He appeared to be in the same quandary as Mick seal, lost in his own time zone. Something had gone wrong as he arrived one hour late after a frantic phone-call from his playing partner, Tony Ranoe.
Visitors signed up from all around the country, from Devon and Wiltshire to Leighton Buzzard, from Drumoig to Badgermore Park. They arrived from Royal Wimbledon, Chester, Rufford Park, Mile End, Leighton Buzzard and Hampton Park. Many were on their own but many came in groups, the largest being a party of twenty-six from Pontardawe. This group have supported the Open for many years along with a group of seventeen from Swansea Bay and nine from Carmarthen. The Swansea bay group included Owen Money, a comedian and entertainer who loves his golf, and, we hope, Tenby Golf Club. In all thirty-one different clubs were represented and took on the challenge of the Tenby links course. The name and popularity of Tenby Golf club is spread over a wide area and many will be back to repeat or improve on their performance.
Interspersed with the many visitors were sixty Tenby members, many of whom went out early while others left it until the afternoon session. Were they hoping to sneak in with a final high score? All will be revealed.
The Nearest the Pin competition on the twelfth hole was won by Robin Caitlin, from Royal Wimbledon. The longest drive was played out on the fourteenth hole. One of the early starters delivered his ball as far as the third bunker. Along came Allen Watts and hit his ball twenty yards further on. Close behind him Keith Hubbard found another twenty yards but even that was surpassed by Steve Williams, whose ball ended up parallel to the path which leads into the ground staff’ sheds. Yet again this was surpassed, this time by the winner, Gordon Jamieson from Oswestry, who must have been close to the right hand bunker or the green.
The competition was divided into two groups – the under seventies and the seventy plus group. In the under seventies The lowest score recorded was fourteen with two at nineteen making it three below twenty. Thirty-eight seniors scored in the twenty to thirty range of which nine were Tenby members. The winners in this section scored in the forties with the following results.
1st Brian Jones (Tenby) 44pts. 2nd Gary McNeilly (Tenby) 42pts. 3rd Alistair Knibb (Tenby) 39pts. 4th Jerry Whitehouse (Tenby) 38pts
1st David McCarthy (Radyr) 40pts. 2nd Dilwyn Price (Swansea Bay) 3rd Brian Ashford (Swansea Bay) 36pts 4th M Eames (Swansea Bay) 36pts.
In the Seventy Plus group the scoring did not reach forty points but, nevertheless, provided some excellent results. Bob Forrest was hanging on in the club to see if his score, which was leading, was going to be surpassed. The answer was yes, but not until the closing stages of this excellent day. In this group there were four seniors scoring below twenty with twenty-three between twenty and thirty. The winners in this group were as follows:
1st Stan Hudson (Tenby) 39pts. 2nd Bob Forrest (Tenby) 38pts. 3rd Barrie Frayne, 4th Tony Keys (Tenby) 36pts, 5th Mike Smiddy (Tenby) 35pts.
1st John James (Pontardawe) 2nd Idris James (Swansea Bay) 35pts. 3rd Richard Hendicott (Royal Porthcawl) 35pts. 4th Peter Ashley Jones (Carmarthen) 35pts.
Congratulations are extended to all who took part and completed an enjoyable game of golf on a challenging course in good weather. There is always a welcome in Tenby and we look forward to seeing you all again in the future.