The Mail on Sunday is not just the second best selling Sunday paper in the UK, a defender of conservatism with a small c but with a tinge of salacious gossip, it also runs a major (10 round) knock-out competition amongst golf clubs in Britain. Which we enter each year. The semi finals and finals are held somewhere exotic, the first few rounds somewhere local.
We had a bye in the first round, which was a result, and were drawn against Dunstanburgh at home for the second.
Here's the problem: how do you select a team? The club that won last year's competition made the decision to play their best golfers; but I think that’s a bit obvious. And almost cheating - although it obviously worked. I thought of putting up a list asking for volunteers; but there wasn't a lot of time. So I thought I'd pick people trying to get a mix of competitive ones, those on form and those that were good. (Plus myself: I couldn't really ask people to give up a Sunday morning without doing so as well). I'll leave you to judge which category Trevor Thompson, John Cairns, Stuart Archer and John Moffet fall into. (Initially I wondered about a team entirely composed of Johns but it turned out to be impractical; at least we were in a majority).
The day itself was pretty stressful; first, most of the other team turned up before 9.00 and our team didn’t completely arrive until 9.50. Bacon rolls kept Dunstanburgh quiet for only so long. Second, I'd picked myself and I was the worse golfer on the team. So I really didn't want to lose. Four-putting the 1st didn't help but learning Trevor was 6 up after 7 did. And then a few pars and a lot of shots worked wonders and as my putt for 5 net 4 eased in on the 15th I knew I couldn't lose. A stroke later I'd won. As did most of the others: we won 4-1, third round beckoning. Nine to go.