After what has been a very busy week, I was looking forward to getting out on the golf course to put the week behind me. I was also looking forward to working some more on my swing, which I need to change to achieve my goal of getting my handicap to 10 this year.
Unfortunately Paul couldn’t play today (but I’m playing a round tomorrow with him) so it was just Neal, Stu and myself.
Im playing the 1st hole a lot safer these days, with a 3 wood off the tee, rather than a driver, as it was getting me in to trouble. We all played the first well, with Neal and myself registering 2 points a piece, but Stu, who is getting better week by week, made a good par after a great 2nd shot. We have, in our little group, cut his handicap from 19 to 14 in an attempt to stop the consistent 40+ point rounds he is shooting.
We all made 5′s on the 2nd for 2 points a piece and then Neal gained an early advantage on the 3rd with a par. I made 4 and Stu had trouble out the bunker and ended up with a 5 for 0. The first hole he now doesn’t get a shot on and it proved costly.
We all made par on the first of the par 5′s, the 4th hole, so all got 3 points each. Neal and myself also made pars on the 5th hole, another par 5, but Super Stu made a great birdie 4 to bring himself back up the points and push me back to last place.
I then decided that for the next 4 holes, I would play some military golf (left, right, left, right) and ended with only 4 points in 4 holes. I really need to focus on my game and not let my mind drift. This seems to happen quite a lot by the time we get to the 6th hole, especially if I have started well, and I need to fix this if I want to lower my handicap. Neal had 2 dodgy holes and 2 good holes on the last 4 holes of the front 9, whilst Stu only had 1 blip and finished the front 9 with 20 points. Neal had 18 and I had 15.
The back 9 started in much the same way for me, with a double bogey on the par 4 10th and triple bogey on the par 3 11th. Stu was still hitting good shots and making points, whilst Neal didn’t have the best of holes on the 11th too, and walked away with no points.
Stu and Neal both made great pars on the 12th hole, apparently the hardest at our course! Not today!
Then came the 13th hole. Stu, with 27 points after 12 holes (and on his new handicap of 14 – within our group) went a little mad! 2 snap hooks on the 13th tee and 2 lost balls meant he made an 8 on this hole. Neal and myself both had 5′s. On the the 14th and Stu decided on this hole to hit 2 big slices. He did manage to find his first ball, but it took him 3 shots to get out and he ended up with another 8 (being thankful at this point that we weren’t playing in a medal comp, otherwise these 2 holes would have undone all his hard work from earlier). I made another 5 whilst Neal made a good par.
And so to the 15th, which has been a problematic hole for Stu of late, and as the rain started to pour, he duffed his tee shot in to the rife that runs in front of the winter tees. After sheltering from the rain for 5 mins, we tried to fish his ball out, but he kept dropping it further and further in to the weeds at the bottom. A lost ball and a 3rd blob in a row for him. He was not a happy golfer at this point! I had, yes you’ve guessed it, another 5 and Neal, yet again, made a par and cruised in to the lead.
Neal made a great birdie on the 16th and Stu a par, and another bogey for me. My mind wasn’t completely on my round after the week I had just had. I did however finish off well, which always helps with pars on the par 5 17th and par 4 18th, which I have been known to shank a shot or 2 on recently!
We ended the day in the sunshine, although more showers were forecast. I finsihed last with 31 points, hence me writing ANOTHER review. Stu only managed 13 points on the way back in, so ended with 33, but Mr Consistent (Neal) finished with a impressive 39 points and is already forging a good base to get his handicap cut this year. Unless I sort it out, I have a feeling I’ll be going in the other direction. Any advice is great appreciated. Until next time (probably tomorrow), happy golfing!