New carpet; new gadget and new season

By - 20th April 2024

Our season-opening first club day of the year was the Chairman’s Choice on 6th April. It was also the first event to take place after some clubhouse rectification action had been tackled following the flooding of the loo area back in January. The clubhouse carpet had to be scrapped and a replacement laid.

The carpet had been generously supplied by Claire’s Mum and installed by Mike B and John B, so this year’s spring cleaning was a bigger job than usual.

19 members turned up on the day and 16 played ‘Croquet Fusion’ – a blend of AC,GC and 1-ball. Even that mash-up came with a twist: a diversion into the practise lawn where an additional hoop had been installed (see below).

Double pairs were selected, with one low handicap with a higher handicap partner, and the pairings changed in each of the three rounds. Each game was played to the peg, making 15 points scored (14 hoops run plus the peg).

After the first round there were four in the lead (Tricia, Claire, Caroline and Doug). After Round 2, Doug was ahead but only one point clear of Tricia and Michael. Then there was a break for one of Freda’s excellent buffet lunches, followed by a final round, during which Doug just managed to retain his one point lead.

The final result was: 1st place Doug, 2nd Claire and joint 3rd Claire, Freda and Michael. 1st and 2nd place received a drinkable prize.

With four games running concurrently throughout the day there were 16 players on the one lawn for most of the time. The full lawn was full. A good way to start the season.

The extra hoop had a plastic insert set into the turf through the hoop as a way of minimising rabbit runs. The diversion through it was between hoops 2 and 3 outbound and 6 and 7 on the return, so the extra hoop was run twice per game, just the same as the regular hoops.

This was part of a trial of these inserts, kindly supplied by our friends in Rother Valley. All friendly and roll-up GC games will run this extra hoop for up to six weeks to assess the implant’s effect, both in reducing rabbit runs and either physically or in the minds of members.

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