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Simon Byford’s golf column: Birdies galore at Thetford Golf Club





Thetford Golf Club Ladies held their annual coffee morning, an event to raise funds for the Captain’s Charity – Norfolk Air Ambulance - with £763 being contributed. A very well attended with members past and present enjoying catching up with each other. The guest speaker, Dr Nikki Delglyn, an Osteomyologist and golf fitness specialist, gave an intriguing and well received presentation about women’s health as we age.

The event included the presentation of awards for the players who had accumulated the most birdies across the 2023 season. Kath Malvern won the 0-12 handicap section, and Wendy Puttock and Ruby Reeve tied for the 13-20 handicap section. Anita Coteman won the 21-30 section, while Helen Price was the winner for handicaps 31+.

Thetford Golf Club’s Kath Malvern, Janet Dickson (Ladies Captain) and Wendy Puttock. Picture by Peter Allott
Thetford Golf Club’s Kath Malvern, Janet Dickson (Ladies Captain) and Wendy Puttock. Picture by Peter Allott

Ladies’ Captain Janet Dickson commented: “It was such a fun event, so well attended, reflecting the vibrancy of the Ladies section and the club generally. We continue to see more members joining Thetford as they enjoy all year-round golf, thanks to the sandy soil and outstanding greens.”

Flempton GC

The Flempton members have had a busy February of competitive golf. With Flempton being a 9 hole course, the members take advantage of playing competitions over both 9 and 18 holes. In the Men’s 18 hole Stableford, Brian Kennedy was the winner. In the Ladies 9 hole Stableford Claudia Robins was victorious with 22 points, and Suvanne Hatding second on 19 points.

There were also 3 Mixed events played in February. Justin Neil was successful in the 18 hole Stableford, David Tobin in the 9 hole Stableford and Philip Gilby in the Medal format event.

Congratulations must also go to Chris Fry and David Ellis who won their first round representing Flempton in the Daily Mail Foursome national knockout, winning away at Stowmarket.

Bury St Edmunds GC

The Winter Goblets was completed at Bury St Edmunds this weekend, in what could already be describe as ‘the turn around of the season’, and successfully put this author to shame. The overwhelming leaders Nick Bonney& Colin Gray were caught and overtaken by Adrian Pitts & David Ives on the final round. Pitts & Ives scored 44 points in the foursomes Stableford format, catapulting themselves to a 4 shot victory. Bonney&Gray could only manage 32 points in the final round and had to settle for second place. Shaun Phillips & Stuart Turner (especially) will be delighted with third place having ‘never done well’ in the Goblets previously.

The Glasswell Cup also came to a conclusion this week with Round 4 being played. Ian Malyon was the top scorer on the day with 42 points, and may well be rueing not playing in the previous rounds. Steve Flint had a super round of 41 points to spring up the leaderboard and make the final reckoning closer than expected. In fact there was only three shots separating the top three places, and with no need for The Count to be involved, everyone could clearly understand the results. In first place was Mike Brooks with 116 points, which consisted of rounds of 39, 39 and 38. One shot adrift was Graham Staff on 115 (41, 38 & 36) in second, and on 114 (35, 38 & 41) was Steve Flint. With 58 players completing all 4 rounds and with over 100 different players competing in total, this continues to be a popular event.

There was also time for a Midweek Mixed Stableford, and it was Nick Burgess who brewed all the right ingredients to be King of the Greene on the day. His gross 2 under par round converted to 43 points and gave him a three shot victory over John Staab in second with 40. Third place went to Stuart Lowe on 35 points, which seemed more reflective of the day’s scoring in very wet & windy conditions. This even more emphasises how good Nick’s (and John’s) rounds were.

Stowmarket GC

The Stowmarket Ladies took part in a foursomes competition. The Count swooped in to decide the winner as two pairs finished on 30 points. Jane Darling and Jane King emerged from the calculation ahead of Lizzie Laflin and Kim Davis. Irene Oveman and Rosemary Stutely were third on 29 points.

There was also time for a Midweek Stableford, with Steve Ribbon winning Division 1 with 30 points, and Liam Carroll top of Dvision 2 also with 30 points.

The weekend yielded two Stableford events, also in two divisions. On the Saturday edition it was Graham Tobin who topped Division 1 ahead of Steve Ribbon, wiith the help of The Count, as both players got 37 points. In Division 2, and with the best score of the day, was Aaron Robinson with 42 points. Kim Double was second with 31 points.

On the Sunday Eddie Butel took the win in Division 1 scoring 37 points.Ollie Grogan was second on 36 points. George Prentice topped Division 2 after he returned 39 points. Tom Sillett was second on 38 points.

Congratulations to all the players in this week’s competitive golf round up, and thank you to everyone at the various clubs who regularly send me the information to make the column possible.

Have a great golfing week.