Rookery GC pair cruise to victory

PUBLISHED: 10:10 21 January 2011

Rokkery Park GC's Chris Soanes

Rokkery Park GC's Chris Soanes


WHEN Chris Soanes, scratch, paired with Ben Wallis, plus one, they knew that they would have to be in top form when competing on a field where many good golfers had strokes to play with.

In aiming for 40pts they realised that they could not afford any blobs, or even many dropped shots, and that they would need a sprinkling of birdies. Warming to the task they produced a round of 12 pars, one bogey and five birdies.

Due to the shot-gun start their last hole was the 12th and they needed a birdie to achieve their aim of 40pts. It was Wallis who chipped in to gain the vital birdie and set up a superb victory. Incredibly, the pair finished six shots ahead of their nearest rivals. Colin Platten with Paul Lowman, Nigel Goldspink with Peter T Smith, Callum Monk with Luke Thompson and Nigel Wigg with Dwayn Barber, all finished with 34 points.

Wallis and Soanes hope to play together in the Portuguese Amateur Open Championship later in the year. Before that they will feature in the pending Stenson and Hambro trials.

Captain of both teams, Chris Lay, has already set up a practice match between Rookery and the Norfolk.

The real action begins when the Stenson team faces a home game against Rushmere and the Hambro team travels to Bungay. Without the services of Calvin Sherwood and Tom Pettifer the bedrock of both teams will be Chris Soanes, Ben Wallis, Luke Thompson, another scratch golfer, and two handicap, Matt Lay.

The rest of the places will be contested between proven stalwarts and the top emerging youngsters. The captain is anxious to go one better this time and win the Stenson Shield. However, he admits to a deep desire to bring the historic Hambro Cup to Rookery.

Martin Scott, Tolly captain, intends to stick with his strategy of picking golfers who do well in competitions. He wants no wildcard selections and believes that his eventual team can improve on last season’s place in the quarter finals.

Meanwhile, John Marjoram has just produced one of the most remarkable pars ever seen at Rookery.

His tee shot on the ninth hole cleared the ditch, the fence and the road to disappear into the trees. After a loud, metallic bang the ball rebounded back onto the course to lodge firmly under a log.

Taking relief, Marjoram then hit a thin shot which skipped narrowly over one bunker, did a “wall of death” performance around another bunker before leaping up and landing 3ft from the pin. Smiling broadly, he promptly holed the putt.

n The ladies are organising a fashion show for 7.30pm on Thursday, March 3. Tickets are available from committee members.

David Batley

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