Golf: Leonardo finds there’s an art to winning the open

Chi PGA pro Mark Wood with junior open winner Leonardo Ruggieri
Chi PGA pro Mark Wood with junior open winner Leonardo Ruggieri

In wet and windy conditions, the annual Chichester Junior Open was played on the par-72 Cathedral course.

Leonardo Ruggieri from Goodwood shot a very impressive 76 to win the championship for the third year in a row.

Runner-up with a gross 82 was William Groom of Worthing. The best nett score of the day went to Charlie Gilgenkrantz with an impressive 69.

Special mention goes to Salysa Mason, who won nearest the pin on the sixth hole which is a 122-yard par three.

A club spokesman said: “We would like to thank all the juniors that participated this year and we look forward in welcoming more juniors into our open in 2017.”

COWDRAY PARK

Leonardo Ruggieri from Goodwood shot a very impressive 76 to win the championship for the third year in a row.

Cowdray Park held their monthly medal on a bright and sunny day with little wind, and the 83 players took full advantage of the benign conditions to post some excellent scores.

Top of the pile was one of the younger seniors, Paul Owen, whose 65 was the best score of the day and continued his handicap reduction. Second place in division one, three shots behind, was Guy Goodens with 68, followed in third by Chris Strudwick on 69, including three birdies.

Justin Thorpe set the pace in division two with 68, fending off three challengers on 69 – Adam Exall, David Hayward and Mick Fillary. Division three’s winner was another senior, Gary Strowbridge, who swept past a re-vitalised Ronnie Barber to win on countback with 67 – ahead of last month’s winner Andrew Douglass on 68. Graham Angell showed a glimpse of his old form with a steady 71.

Leading scores: Div 1: 65 Paul Owen; 68 Guy Goodens; 69 Chris Strudwick; 70 Andy Salmon, Phil Harrison and Oliver Bradbury. Div 2: 68 Justin Thorpe; 69 Adam Exall, David Hayward, Mick Fillary; 70 Paul Hatcher, M. Karn, Henry Fisher. Div 3: 67 Gary Strowbridge, Ronnie Barber; 68 Andrew Douglass; 69 Alan Richardson; 70 Dave Fowler.

Cowdray Park seniors played their second match in two days when they entertained a very keen team from Hayling Island.

The hosts put out a strong team against guests whose course is among the toughest around.

Although the visitors put up a determined fight, with most matches closely contested, the home team ran out winners by 5½-2½.

The first match out featured both match managers and proved one of high quality, with birdie putts and pars the order of the day. Trevor Edwards and Tony Pike were two up at the turn but, by the 18th, they had been reeled in by their opponents for an honourable draw.

Dave Lucking and Dave Coombes overpowered their opponents 5&4 before John Doran and Mike Nobes won a tough match 2&1, with Doran scoring a personal gross two over par and Nobes winning a prize for his nearest-the-pin shot on the ninth, which finished barely three inches from the hole.

This showed how much the Cowdray players had to be on their game to get a result.

Apart from the final match, which Nick Austin and Gary Strowbridge won 5&3, most of the other matches went to the 18th.

Results (Cowdray names first): Trevor Edwards & Tony Pike halved with Alan Mills & Allen Spencer; Dave Lucking & Dave Coombes beat Barry Jones & Gerry Daly 5&4; John Doran & Mike Nobes beat Neil Blackey & Martin Toomer 2&1; Paul Owen & Peter Hallt beat Robin Theodore & Jamie Leggett 2&1; Ian Heustice & Mike Cardiff lost to Nick Iacobucci & Ken Stobbart 2 dn; Frank Cheevers & John Newman beat Richard Bartlett & Richard Gaskin 2&1; Terry Adsett & Sam Howes lost to Keith Arnold & Cyril Aydon 3&1; Nick Austin & Gary Strowbridge beat Terry Hailey & Colin McNiece 5&3.

Cowdray ladies competed for the Syrett Bowl. It was a Stableford played with only three clubs and a putter.

The winner was Catherine Staples with a creditable score of 33 points. Georgie Miller was runner-up with 31 and Marilyn Davis was third with 30.

BOGNOR

Bognor men held a Sunday medal, with the highlight of the day being Mark Carter shooting a score well below his age, in doing so winning division one.

Overall winner was Grant Twine with a gross 81, nett 67. Second on countback was Dave Carter (80, 67) and third Cliff Willis (80, 68).

Bognor seniors played two matches in a week, beating both Royal Winchester and Southwick Park.

In the home match against Royal Winchester, Bognor won 6-2, captain David Turner and his partner Gary Steventon excelling with a 6&5 win.

Results: David Turner & Gary Steventon won 6&5, Frank Hodder & Clive Millett won 5&4, Mike Oates & Bob Lee lost 3&2, Mike Watts & Trevor Till won 2 up, John Chapman & Richard Beresford won 2&1, John Woodhead & Roger SElway won 2&1, Mike Matthews & Terry Kuhler lost 2&1, Barry Ingate & Peter McCormack won 3&2.

Bognor travelled to Southwick Park and played the first 90 minutes in driving rain and gales.

Conditions improved considerably and Bognor had an excellent 7-1 win. It was Southwick’s first home defeat in two years.

Continuing his excellent form was Turner, who has started the season in style – he and Ken Catt won 4&3.

Bognor fielded three new players to the seniors’ match team – Cliff Willis, Peter Selby and Jim Stephenson. All enjoyed the day despite the weather.

Results: Mike Oates & Roger Selway won 1up, Cliff Willis & Ian Bright won 3 and 1, David Turner & Ken Catt won 4 and 3, Peter Selby & Clive Millet won 1 up, Jim Stephenson & Andy Bence won 1 up, Andy Isitt & Bob Lee halved, Barry Appleby & Richard Beresford won 3 and 2, Frank Hodder & Bryan Madgwick halved.

GOODWOOD

More than 170 people enjoyed complimentary lessons and ‘level up’ sessions at the Golf At Goodwood academy open weekend.

Aimed at introducing new people to the sport and growing the game, the event offered a chance for those interested in taking up golf to come and have a go under the expert guidance of the academy’s professionals.

The innovative ‘level up’ programme for juniors is open to children over five. It encourages them to learn and develop their golfing skills and rewards and develops their life skills such as confidence, fitness, leadership and teamwork. A total of 11 new juniors joined the programme.

Also well received over the weekend was Get Into Golf, which provides a chance for those entirely new to the game to start playing without investing in any specialist gear, with lessons provided to allcomers during an affordable four-week programme.

The event was attended by three Goodwood ambassadors – recent Sunningdale Foursomes winner Marco Penge, European Challenge Tour pro Darren Wright and Holly Aitcheson, ladies’ European Tour professional – who were on hand to demonstrate their drives and answer questions.

Chris McDonnell, PGA professional and academy manager, said: “The weekend was a great opportunity for the local community to experience the game of golf and everything Goodwood has to offer.

“Over the two days we welcomed 170 people who enjoyed individual, Get Into Golf and junior lessons with music, refreshments and games adding to the fun, relaxed atmosphere.

“We are really committed to growing the game of golf in Southern England and this fun initiative really allowed us to showcase the experience people receive when visiting Golf At Goodwood.

McDonnell added: “I would also like to thank our Goodwood ambassadors for providing an exhibition of golf shots and sharing their journey of becoming elite golfers with juniors and their parents.”

Clare Lawrence, who attended the event with her two children, said; “Both my children, Harvey (11) and Dexter (five) absolutely loved it. Everyone was really good with them and they managed to join in with two sessions as well as the driving range in between. It was a really lovely day out.”

The weekend was an example Goodwood’s ongoing commitment to engaging the local community as part of its sustainability strategy.

For further information on the upcoming mixed and female Get into Golf courses, individual tuition and the Junior Level Up programme, visit www.goodwood.com or call 01243 520162.

LITTLEHAMPTON

Littlehampton seniors have defied bad weather to complete three competitions and three club matches.

The winter order of merit, the Howard Agar Cup, is played over four rounds of Stableford play. The winner of each round scores 20 points, down to one point for 20th.

The winner with 58 points was Geoff Howell; second with 51 John Boardman and third on 46 was John Ludlow.

The inter-team matchplay was competed over three rounds of various formats. The winners were team A captained by Jan De Vries.

The Easter Stableford was won by Richard James with 45; second was Tony Buckle with 44 and third Mike Power with 42.

The section have played three club matches – away to Hayling Island, they lost 7½-½, at home to Hankley Common it was a 4½-3½ win and they beat Bognor 6-2, also at home.

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