With one of the biggest Wedge fields formed in recent history, this 12 a-side battle was always going to be a belter. This was one of the few Wedge’s where both Captains felt that we were well ahead of schedule with the planning. Team’s were selected months in advance, pairings chosen, bets placed and we had even arranged queue jump at the ‘nightclub’!
Like many fine leaders, you have to roll with the punches, as the team line ups changed continually in the days running up to the event – with the most fantastic news that Jack Philip Richards was born on Friday night. I’m sure a great future Wedger!
So Saturday arrived, and the teams assembled at Walton Heath for the standard fare of Bacon Rolls and Bloody Mary’s. Walton Heath was a bit of a ghost town as the majority of the Men’s membership were tucked up in bed recovering from the Men’s dinner the night before.
The team’s headed out to the New Course to do battle (WH arrived late, that led to the Deal Captain trying to claim 2 match victories before we started – obviously it was quickly ignored)
Match 1 was a tight affair – the old guard of Waud and Mason doing combat, partnered by the Oxford duo of Webster and Ferrari-Wells (classic). Webster and Waud were nursing some quite serious hangovers from the Men’s Dinner – so were both particularly pleased to get over the line 1up! (or was it 2up?!?)
Out 2 was a very solid Walton Heath pairing of Carroll and Story (both with rather impressive points percentages – alas Carroll has a 100% win record). Playing against Deal Captain Hedges and the very charming Liam Brown. Another tight affair, fortunately the Walton boys holding on to win 2&1, with Carroll’s 100% record still intact for another couple of hours at least.
Our third match featured our two ladies in the morning round – Caroline Stewart and Sarah Hedges, who were being entertained (unlikely) by Dave Potter and Thomas Biggs. This match ended in an honourable half.
Out 4 was a brace of Walton stalwarts – the House of Payne and Bowes of Bowesgate. Drawn against a rather serious Deal pairing of Oliver ‘Heartattack’ Daws and Deal’s rookie Josh Bristow. After seeing some rather military golf from the Walton pairing, Daws and Bristow put the first full point on the board for Deal, with a 1up victory.
Out 5 was our Walton Heath assistant professional, Pete Roberts, partnered with Stuart Frith. Drawn against Ben Irvine and Jimbo Hedges. Pete was long overdue a win, so excitement was rife when he walked into the bar at lunchtime. Needless to say, he apparently had had one of the worst rounds of his life, and team Walton were dispatched 4&3.
Last out in the morning for Walton were the rather tidy pairing of Lewis Kuhler (who was conned into playing at the Men’s dinner the night before) and Stephen Tillie – who was looking rather ripped in a tight fitting polo shirt! They were drawn against another set of Deal celebs – Martin Fent and Alex Cork. Walton took this game comfortably 5&4, meaning that Walton led 3.5 – 2.5 at lunch.
Fortunately for all concerned, we had raced around in the morning, meaning there was ample time at lunch to catch up with friends old and new. As people had parked cars up for the day, there was a rather impressive charge on the wine, and of course a kummel and port sharpener on the way to the Old Course for the afternoon round.
With some epic matches scheduled for the afternoon foursomes, the headline news seemed to be:
Could John Carroll keep his 100% record?
Nicola Taylor had been swapped for Caroline Stewart
How would Webster’s performance be affected after ½ a bottle of Batailley?
Could Pete Roberts secure a famous point in the afternoon?
And the results are in…
JC did keep his 100% win record
Rookie Nicola Taylor won a point in her first game
Webster managed a ½ with Story against Jimbo Hedges and Corky
Pete Roberts did not manage to sneak a win…
The afternoon round did go more Walton’s way, taking 4.5 points from a possible 6, meaning Walton took the spoils for the day 8-4.
After a couple more sharpeners at the club, taxi’s were booked to head to Waud Towers for a rather raucous dinner. Special thanks to:
Jess Leah for her fabulous lasagne (and to Sam Mason for transporting it from Deal)
Jeremy and Jackie Waud for allowing the onslaught to happen (sitting 24 down in the kitchen was a Waud record!)
Matt Webster for providing an Imperial of 2009 Saget de Gruaud Larose.
A small party then head to Number 9 in Reigate to push some shapes out and enjoy some Porn Star Martini’s.
Another fantastic Wedge Trophy – and we look forward to returning to Deal next year for the 15th playing of the most brilliant fixture in the calendar.