Switch to 13-hole format not unlucky for winner Surgenor

Thomas Surgenor, Keith Richmond and Colin Robinson
Thomas Surgenor, Keith Richmond and Colin Robinson

With the clocks having gone back recently, the format of the competitions at Ballymena Golf Club has changed accordingly.

The competitions have been cut from 18 holes to 13, thereby allowing competitors who begin at in the early afternoon to complete their round.

In the first of these competitions, the prize-winning points totals were all in the thirties.

The overall prize was won by Stephen Surgenor who, despite having had his handicap adjusted from 15 to 11, still managed a total of 33 points.

Having played the first nine holes in three over par gross for 23 points, he then completed his 13 holes with three pars and a dropped shot at the 11th for a further 10 points, meaning he played the shortened course in seven under his handicap.

Overall runner-up was Allan McCullough (27) who was in receipt of 20 shots and he made good use of them with seven single bogeys and three double bogeys, but against those ‘doubles’ he made pars on the fourth, seventh and 10th, which accounted for 10 of his 33 points.

Category one saw Harry McGarry put his six-shot allowance to good use as he chalked up 30 points from a round of two over par gross.

His round contained nine pars and three bogeys, while he had a birdie at the par five ninth.

Category two was won by David Black who, with nine shots on handicap, returned a total of 30 points.

David got the perfect send-off with a birdie at the first hole, for four points, and he repeated the trick at the fifth hole.

By the time he had completed the front nine he had 22 points on his card his final four holes - two pars, a bogey and a double bogey - yielded eight points.

Category three was won by Donald Smyth who, with 11 shots on handicap, also produced 30 points, even allowing for a non-score at the first hole.

Donald dropped another three shots - countered by a birdie - on the next four holes and completed his first nine with three pars and a bogey. The last four holes accounted for three pars and a dropped shot on the 11th for another 10 points.

Category four resulted in a relatively new member, Ryan Daly (25), scoring 31 points from his adjusted allowance of 18 shots.

The first nine holes were comprised of six bogeys plus three straight pars between the sixth and eighth as he notched up 24 points. He was only able to add seven more points, however, after double bogeys at three of the last four holes.

The best gross card came from the ever-dependable Gary Black, who played the 13 holes in two under gross.

The one-handicapper recorded nine pars and also birdied the seventh, ninth and 11th holes.

His only dropped shot came on the par four fifth, which was the only single point hole on the card.