Golf: Rutland Water’s Phil Hibbitt sinks 8ft putt to secure point plus other club reports

Phil Hibbitt, Rutland Water Golf Club
Phil Hibbitt, Rutland Water Golf Club
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Rutland Water’s Scratch team gained a crucial point away at Forest Hill Golf Club Thursday evening last week to maintain their unbeaten record.

It looked bleak for the away side after nine holes of the contest as six matches out of the eight were behind, however Rutland Water’s number one Nick Vance started the comeback by brilliantly battling back from four down to snatch victory. This was followed up by convincing wins for Alistair Lawson and Peter Stephens.

By the time Phil Hibbitt stepped up to a tricky 8ft putt at the last hole, the match stood at 4-3 to Forest Hill and Phil needed to hole the putt to tie the match at 4-4. Phil, who is renowned for his successful yet unconventional putting style, calmly stroked the ball into the hole for victory in his match and an unlikely point for the team.

Phil said: “I’d putted great all day, so it was just a case of picking the right line and trusting my stroke. It feels great to hole a putt that makes such a difference to the team.”

The club are now three points clear at the top of the table with only two matches left to play, however face an in-form Charnwood Forest side in a crucial top of the table clash away from home in their next game.

* Rick Woolmer had a return to form by winning the August medal on a blustery Saturday at the club.

Rick, returned a nett 69 to finish four shots clear of the consistent Richard Lavin (78 nett 73) who finished in second to follow up on the same position in last months equivalent.

Richard did however have the consolation of winning the lowest gross prize. Ernie McFarlane topped a group of four players on nett 75 to finish in third.

Greetham Valley Golf Club

* Les Kowal took the win in division two with a nett 71 and was cut to 16. Malcolm Gray off 24 was second on count back with a nett 74 from Mark Hibbitt, both players scored a nett 73. Les and Mark also shared the lowest gross prize.

* Jackie Friend won the Ladies Moore Stephens Trophy with a nett 73. Jackie said that it was a game of two halfs, the front nine was dry and sunny and she struggled with her putting, three putting on three greens.

However, as soon as it started raining and the wind got up, she started to putt better and, had a much better back nine to take the win and earn herself a cut to seventeen.

Heather Morgan was second with a nett 74 on count back from Bev Dolman and Sophie Beardsall. Sophie playing off scratch won the lowest gross.

* Six handicapper William Hopkins from Sleaford had a fantastic round in searing heat to take the win in the Rutland Times Junior Open. William shot two birdies and 10 pars to win the Gross trophy with a brilliant 76.

Thomas Forster from Elton Furze, playing off, two was second with 77. Third place went to Bradley Watkins from Ullesthorpe Golf Club playing off five came in with a gross 80.

James Bright won the nett prize with a 69.

* The Seniors followed their win against Sleaford last week with a 4-2 win against visitors Cosby.

Captain Rod Wells said he was pleased with the win and looks forward to travelling to Sleaford next week.

The C team also had an emphatic win during the week, they beat Kibworth by seven to one at home. Captain Neil Sellars takes his team to Kibworth for the return leg this week.

* The first team travelled to Burghley Park in the knowledge that anyone of four teams could still win the division two title.

Burghley were keen to reverse the result from the previous meeting at the end of May when Greetham won.

Most of the games were close through the front nine with a draw looking a likely result, but Burghley edged ahead in the front two matches with Adam Clegg and Fraser Denholm suffering a two and one defeat.

The same scoreline against Andrew Frisby and Ben Gasson saw Burghley take an early lead.

Trevor Smith and Bob Green saw their lead snatched away and they lost out on the final green to go one down. Paul Clegg and Richard Wilson recorded the first win for Greetham with a three and two victory, this was followed by a one up victory for Neil Harris and Nick Cunnington.

However, a heavy defeat for Ray Gladwinfield and Scotty Stevenson meant Burghley took maximum points and now head the division two table. They head to Blankney in two weeks time needed only a draw to secure the title and promotion to the top flight.

Team Captain Neil Harris said: “We battled hard and at one stage we thought we would manage the draw which could have put us in a strong position to win the league but it wasn’t our day and we just didn’t have the strength in depth needed to overcome a determined Burghley Park side.

“We wish them luck in their final fixture.”

Rutland County Golf Club

The Seniors enjoyed a great day after last week’s demoralising defeat at Burghley. The Rutland boys bounced back in emphatic style, beating South Kyme 8-0.

Results: John Phipps & John Mason won 4 & 3 ; Andrew Moore & Arthur Dethick won 3 & 2 ; John Chatburn & John Rudin won 2 & 1 ; Ray Taylor & Keith Barratt won 5 & 3; Alan Garner & Ron Jenkins won 2 & 1; Tony Whiting & Nigel Coombs won 1 up; David Whitehead & Stewart Picton won 4 & 3; Gerry McIntyre & Rob Elliott won 2 up

* A total of 54 members turned out for the Seniors Yellow Peril competition. The weather was great, the course in good condition so there was some excellent scoring.

Nearest the Line on the eighth (actually on the line) was Anne Sargeson. Nearest the Pin on the 15th was Peter Stokes.

Results: 1 81 points - Mike Reynolds, Ralph Baker and Maurice Arnold; 2 - 79 points - Mike Pell, Gerry Webb and Alan Bainbridge

The two from three competition winners with 79 points, after count back, were the trio of Barry Cheshire, Joe Smith and Vic Pheasant.