Old foes at Rookery Park make a winning team

PUBLISHED: 16:38 26 April 2012

Glen Kemp watches his partner, Alan Bidwell, playing an iron shot.

Glen Kemp watches his partner, Alan Bidwell, playing an iron shot.


The Rookery main golfing season has kicked off with the traditional RV Fisher singles competition and the Ted Swann, which is one of the only fourball competitions of the season.

The latter competition brought together two former adversaries to form a winning partnership.

Some years ago Alan Bidwell met Glen Kemp for the first time in the final of the Long Handicap, and won on the last hole. In the Ted Swann, the pair played steady golf, with Bidwell producing a birdie on the last hole to give them a winning score of 65 net.

He started playing golf in 2001, having played football and cricket, because he fancied a new challenge.

Taking to his new sport quickly he won the Rabbit’s Cup, the Long Handicap, the Marshall Cup, the Leighton Speake and the Bob Bagshaw Trophy, as well as several Turkeys and Stablefords.

His greatest disappointment came when he thought he was last in the clubhouse in a Marshall Cup competition, with a winning score of 68 net.

It was the following day when he realised that some juniors had played in the afternoon and that three of them had equalled his score. Instead of winning, he had been placed fourth on a countback. Worse was to follow.

Due to his Rabbit’s Cup win and a score of 50pts with Gary Flatt in a Turkey, Mike Rees cut his handicap from 28 to 18 in one go. Bidwell, brother of low handicap, Brian, has played for the club’s Tolly and Beaumont teams.

His relaxed but determined approach to golf promises more success in the future.

Glen Kemp hopes that the Parks’ selector will note that, in a few weeks, he has won both a singles and doubles competition. Other Ted Swann prize winners included Billy Donachie (in danger of attracting Mike Rees’ attention) with David Knights, Mike Dolan with Ray Flook and Mike penny with Kevin Squires. All scored 66net.

In the RV Fisher, Graeme Brown and Sam Jaggard, members of the Stenson and Hambro squads, hit form at the right time, with scores of 70net.

Three successive bogeys hindered Brown’s effort whilst a lapse at the 14th spoilt Jaggard’s round.

Both lost on a countback, leaving Chris Laws as the winner. Jaggard gained some consolation by taking 4th prize in the Rushmere Vase Scratch Open.

There are a few Rookery golfers who stop playing during the winter months, due to the weather.

Most prominent of these Rookery ‘dormice’ is former Hambro and Stenson star, John Knight.

Clad in new glasses, darkened to suit his macho image, he was full of optimism when he returned to the course recently.

Unfortunately, they caused him to play one of the only shanks of his career.

It was a case of back to the drawing board to make adjustments. Soon, he returned, determined not to repeat the dreaded shank. This time he did not shank his ball – he missed it completely.

He assured his amused colleagues that the ‘fresh air’ shot had nothing to do with his new glasses. It was caused, he insisted, by the sight of his former Hamro Cup partner, John Symon, appearing on the course clad in bright, pink trousers.

He was unsure whether to talk golf to his former partner or ask him for the last dance. The incident has solved the problem of a Christmas present. Knight has decided to buy his former partner a set of pink, matching tee pegs.

David Batley

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