Good evening to you all, it’s great to see the sun is starting to shine and the temperature is starting to creep up. I have been truly spoilt this weekend after another birthday ticks by. After Junior golf on Saturday Jane whisked me away to Robin Hoods Bay in North Yorkshire. I normally do not like surprises, but I managed to resist temptation to not ask where we were going and this proved to be the right choice as this area of Yorkshire is absolutely stunning. The surprises did not stop there, we walked into the nearest watering hole and I was left gobsmacked as I was greeted with the sight of my sister Helen and her partner John. A couple of pints and then a beautiful cod linguini with chorizo at a local restaurant meant I had a brilliant day. Thank you to Jane for the great surprises and well done at the sneakiness at which she managed them!
By the time you read this I will have just completed the second ‘Girls that Golf’ session and what a response I have had! For the last few months I have been emailing, Tweeting and Facebooking about these sessions. 12 girls came to the first taster session so thank you to everyone who has supported me in making people aware of these sessions. After the taster session 8 girls returned so I am really looking forward to seeing the girls improve over the next six weeks.
I am looking to making these sessions a regular Saturday afternoon session, so if you know anyone who would like to give golf a go, then please send them our way. Don’t forget, if it is their first session, then there is no charge.
It’s great to see the ladies section getting involved, each week I will be joined by a different member of the ladies section to help me run the session. So far, Christine Gregory & Sarah Stonier have been on hand to assist and they have done a great job. Thank you Christine and Sarah.
July 31st 2016 seems such a long time ago, but believe it or not that is when the last major golf competition concluded! Well, after 249 days, we have the first major of the year about to hit our screens…yes, it’s the Master’s! Soon the players will be driving down Magnolia Lane with hopes of donning the green jacket and joining a very exclusive club. For me it is the best major of the year, partly because of the length of time we have to wait for it to arrive and partly because of how pristine the course is. When you watch it on TV hardly a blade of grass seems out of place, all the caddies wearing the same outfits and the flowers come out to give the place a bit of colour. Combine this with great holes, the excitement that the back 9 on Sunday can bring and the history that goes with it, it puts a smile on my face just thinking about it.
Last year Danny Willett was the first Englishman to don the green jacket for 20 years, but he has seriously struggled for form since then. For so long it looked like Jordan Spieth would claim his 2nd green jacket in three years until he ran up a red quadruple bogie on the 12th.
So who is going to do well this year…
You will find it very hard to find a case to bet against the world number one, outstanding recent form, deadly from within 100 yards and extremely cool under pressure…a perfect combination of ingredients? The only chink in the armour that I can see is his favoured fade does not suit the Augusta layout…maybe I am clutching at straws there!
What can I say about the rest of the top 4? Jordan does not seem to have recaptured the devastating form of the last few years. Rory is very much hit and miss at the moment and Jason Day is not quite focused on his golf after the very sad news about his Mum. This is not to say they should be rejected, Jordan could well be inspired by his previous successes here, Rory will have the extra desire to complete his grand slam and could we see a Ben Crenshaw esq performance from Jason?
I think he rightly deserves the title of most promising golfer so far this year…a win early on in the season followed by a great run in the recent WGC Matchplay would suggest there is a wise old head on the 22 year olds shoulders. However this will be his debut at the event and, with no debutant winning at Augusta for 40 years, this tip may have come too early in his career.
Burst out of the blocks this year with early wins and although his form has dipped a little bit, it hasn’t stopped him from getting to number 4 in the world. He has performed consistently well at Augusta so clearly the course suits him. He definitely has major potential and The Masters could offer him that breakthrough.
Son of a golfing legend, Bill has sometimes struggled to emulate his father, but there are signs that he could be peaking at the right time. Again, a high finisher in the matchplay, he has 3 top 20 finishes in his last 4 Masters appearance’s and a recent swing tip from his dad could end up being crucial this year.
This is probably a heart over head selection, but when will Sergio win a major? He has come close so many times without getting over the line he must be thinking that time is running out. I think the longer he goes on without a major, the harder it will become. Even without the win he is still one of the best from tee to green and if the weathermen are right in predicting rain for Augusta, then the greens maybe slow enough to suit him.
It has not been the best of years for this two times Masters winner, but we certainly saw signs of the old Bubba. The Augusta National is a course where you need imagination and in Watson you have this in abundance. At the moment he is sticking with his pink ball, but stories of him not being able to make the ball curve as much as normal may mean he heads back to a more traditional ball for the Masters.
The best news from the last two weeks was without doubt the fact the clocks have gone back and we now have light on an evening until at least 7:30. This means it won’t be long before you can get a full round in after work whilst wearing shorts and t-shirt and playing the course at its best…happy days!!! The light nights also see the return of my After Work Club, which if you are new to my blog, may be unfamiliar to you. Each Wednesday, starting at 6pm, I take a 90 minute coaching session based on a different area of the game follow by a pint in the clubhouse afterwards. Please have a look at the attached poster and I hope to see you at tomorrow night's session on putting.
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