B grade golf winner is no mug
By BRAD GREENSHIELDS
SAWTELL golfer Darren Blaikie has just possibly had the best weekend that he will ever have in his golfing life.
Sure he won the B grade club championship and the glory that comes along with such a title but one gets the feeling it was winning the 'Mug' on Saturday for producing the best round of the day that pleased Blaikie the most.
Oddly enough it was Blaikie's 78 off the stick on Saturday that paved the way for both awards.
"On Saturday, I hit the ball like a champ," the new champ enthused.
"I was seven over on the back nine and shot par on the front."
For the uninitiated, the Mug is a weekly award and the winner is able to drink from it for a week and the purchase price of the ale of the winners choice is only a fraction of the usual price.
Going into Sunday's final round as leader in his division, the 12 handicapper thought that he'd give his well earned reward a miss on Saturday night so he would be in tip top shape for the final round.
It didn't take long though for his mates at the clubhouse to change his mind.
"I wasn't going to have a few beers but they told me to do it," Blaikie explained.
"They said to 'go and get a few into me then I won't see the trees during Sunday's round."
This is the first time in 10 years of trying that Blaikie has won a club championship in his grade after coming close once before before faltering in the final round but the club's handicapper hasn't taken long to reel his handicap in a couple of shots.
Then again having your name on the honour board and getting cheap drinks for a week is a small price to pay.
n A FOURTH club championship in five years looked to be a distant dream for Trevor Ridge in the A grade as he wasn't even in the final group when he teed off on Sunday.
He was a massive six shots behind clubhouse leaders Scott Kinninmont and Brad Lewis and then a triple bogey from Ridge on the sixth hole mad his task of winning even more difficult.
But the door was left ajar by the leaders and Ridge didn't need a second invitation to walk right through.
"There were a couple of rumours from the people who were watching that that Brad and Scott weren't playing that well and they told me that I was still in it," Ridge said.
"From then on it was a matter of keeping my head down and keep going."