Cornwall played their second level play league golf croquet match on May 9th. The opponents were East Dorset. In contrast to the previous day’s match against Swanage, the weather was dry, mainly sunny, but windy, and the beautifully kept lawns were startlingly different from Swanage’s, and a real pleasure to play on. It was also possible to minimise the number of double banked games, as three lawns were usually available.
Both teams played with the minimum of four per side. Cornwall’s team were D. Edwards (Capt) handicap (3), S. Read (3), R. George (4) and D. Honey (4). East Dorset were represented by T. Weston (1), J. Wood (1), T. Matthews (3) and J. Speigal (5). This meant that East Dorset’s average handicap was 2.5, Cornwall’s 3.5. This does not sound like much, but there is a large gap in index points between players on 1 and those on 3 or 4. In level play, if the handicaps are realistic, E. Dorset should theoretically win.
The excellent and very fast lawns rewarded accurate touch play. In the opening set of doubles, Edwards & Honey got a win, but the remaining matches went Dorset’s way. The next group of singles went 3-1 to Dorset, Cornwall’s win coming from Edwards v Weston. The next two groups of four singles were drawn, with wins for Read & Edwards, and Honey & Edwards. By this stage, East Dorset were at least looking over their shoulders at their pursuers, but in the final group, they clinched it 3-1, Cornwall gaining just the one win.
The final result was E. Dorset 13, Cornwall 7, therefore justifying the maths of the handicaps. Although it seems a comfortable margin, this concealed six very closely fought games won by E. Dorset, 2 at 7-6. and 4 at 7-5.
Final Score: East Dorset 13 Cornwall 7