Steve's at home at Cumberwell

Surry weathers the Storm to Win at Home

With gale force winds and heavy showers lashing the course at Cumberwell Park for both tournament days some of the players must have wished they’d been good at Snooker or Darts instead of golf!

A home player victory was a definite possibility with local hero Steve Surry in the field and although being a hot favourite brings its own pressures, Surry performed quite brilliantly in the conditions and returned a 4 under par 67 over the combined Red and Blue courses.

Paul Reed, who is in a rich vein of form this year, played superbly to get within one shot of Surry, scoring a solid 3 under 68 and he was joined by Challenge Tour member Kyron Sullivan and former P.G.A Champion Scott Drummond.

Adam Wootton, Ben Jones, Daniel Phillips, Sam Matton and Adam Stott formed the main chasing pack on 2 under par. To show how tough the conditions were on the first day only 15 players managed to break the par of 71 out of a field of 98.

The second day brought no respite from the strong winds and with even more rain sweeping in from the West it would be a tough day for all the players and most definitely the men would be sorted from the boys. The conditions caused a slight hiccough in the proceedings with a monsoon like downpour flooding three of the greens but with the help of the green keepers and complex owner Ali James, play was soon back on track.

Andy Shakespear and Jake Amos threw caution to the wind and extracted 3 under par 68’s from the course to elevate them into the prize fund. Multiple winner Lee James put himself into a possible winning position carding a 3 under par 68 to finish the tournament on 4 under par to be club-house leader yet again!

James had to wait for the last four groups to finish before he would know his fate but with the news that Surry was negotiating the back nine successfully and standing on 5 under par after 33 holes with the birdie able par 5 eighteenth to come it looked like a forlorn hope.

Sure enough Surry plucked a final birdie from the last hole to finish an emphatic winner on 6 under par and win a welcome cheque for £5,000 to help with his quest for European Tour status at stage 2 of Q School. Lee James although disappointed not to win had his mood lifted a little with a second place cheque for £2,500.

Cumberwell Park is a magnificent facility with a combination of 4 nine-hole courses that will suit golfers of all standards and abilities. Cumberwell also has one of the best short game facilities in the south at which you could spend the whole day and not get bored. All that combined with helpful staff and “imported” pasties from Cornwall, that do nothing for your dietary ambitions, make Cumberwell Park, is a must visit golf complex.

A welcome week off for the team now before the final push to complete the season with the last three events of a 23 tournament season.

A purple-patch for Dale Whitnell!

Once again Dale Whitnell shows the field a clean pair of heels! With win Number 2.

Travelling up the M6 to the most northerly of all of our events of 2011 the weather deteriorated with each passing mile, classic northern conditions greeted us on arrival at The Tytherington near Macclesfield, making first day very difficult for scoring with strong winds and constant rain sweeping the course.

Despite the awful weather the members of The Tytherington Club, obviously a hardy bunch, turned out in numbers to support the Jamega Professionals, who were battling not only the conditions but a very strong golf course.
Although a relatively small field for our first venture north of Watford Gap, only 6 players managed to break the par of 72.

Sam Robinson and Mark Laskey led the way both completing their rounds in excellent 3 under par scores.
 Leading the chasing pack were Michael Lowe, Adam Stott and Trevor Jones all scoring very respectable 2 under par 70’s.

The only other player to break par on this weather beaten day was Ian Brown, who managed  a one under par total, just ahead of a group on level, which included Ryan Harrison, Mark Smith and last week’s winner Dale Whitnell.
The second day, although overcast, was considerably less windy and the early indications were that scoring would be lower than day one.

This proved to be the case when early starter and local hero Steve Pullan carded a fine 2 under par 70. Two groups later James Ruth having travelled all the way up from St Mellion, in Cornwall added a magnificent 5 under par 67 to his first round score of 76 to assume the clubhouse lead at 1 under.

Tom Murray, the son of Andrew Murray the former European Open winner, starting to show some promise, carding a solid 2 under par to leave him on 1 over par for the tournament.

News came in from the on-course scorer that Dale Whitnell had stormed into the lead at 7 under par with just 2 holes to play. Hot on his heels and desperate to stay in touch, came the mercurial Michael Lowe, trying to improve on his on course total of 5 under par.

After a par on the difficult 17th hole Dale Whitnell was left needing a 6 or better to take the Clubhouse lead. A slightly pushed second shot left him a difficult chip to a pin cut at the very back on a very fast running green. His chip coming up some 4 feet short, with steely nerves rammed it firmly into the back of the hole to record a -7 tournament total and a tentative wait for the last 2 groups to record their scores.

No real need for concern as his 2 shot lead was maintained with just Michael Lowe snapping at his heels but coming up shy at 5 under.

Well done for the second week in a row, a very confident Dale Whitnell is now really looking forward to carrying this form through to the European Tour Qualifying School in just a few weeks time. We wish him well.

The Tytherington Club situated on the outskirts of the old silk town of Macclesfield offers a superb golfing experience with extensive leisure facilities.

A challenging tournament in more ways than one but “what a golf course”, superbly designed to test the best of the Pro’s but still an excellent course for all levels of player with many possible tee choices making it fair for all. Really well presented by Jim Cassidy and his team of enthusiastic green-keepers, many thanks to them, we will be back!

Challenge Tour player, Dale Whitnell's First Jamega win

Challenge Tour player, Dale Whitnell with amazing consistancy ( missing just 1 green in 36)
takes his first Jamega win

With unusually light winds to deal with the players were in confident mood that the scoring would be low over the short but tricky course at The Bristol Golf Club which starts atop a hill with stunning views overlooking The Severn Estuary with the Welsh hills beyond.

Dale Whitnell produced the low round of the day reducing the 6100 yard layout to a mere 64 shots to head the leader board on 6 under par.

Close behind, snapping at his heels, came Jonathan Caldwell on 5 under par 65. Liam Robinson who is showing good form of late was a further shot adrift on 4 under par.

The former BMW PGA winner Scott Drummond was well in the hunt on 3 under par alongside Kieran Staunton, the ever present James Ablett and Ryan Adair who is just getting back into tournament golf. In all some 17 players broke the par of 70 leaving the tournament wide open for anyone to win.

Fortunately the horrendous weather forecast for the second day failed to materialise and despite windier conditions the general scoring seemed to be better especially for Challenge Tour player Kyron Sullivan who holed in one at the par 3 second on his way to a second round 3 under par 67 and a bonus prize of £100.

Lee James set the early clubhouse target at 6 under par thanks to a blistering last 5 holes that he completed in no less than 6 under the card!

Sam Robinson soon spoiled James’s day by adding his own 6 under par effort to his first round 1 under 69 to take the clubhouse lead on 7 under par. Asian Tour player Yasin Ali equalled Robinson’s final total and both had to sit it out and wait for the final two groups to appear.

In the penultimate group only Scott Drummond made the clubhouse leaders sweat a bit scoring a second 67 that saw him finish on 6 under par.

As the last group approached the last green a rash of rulings were required including a bizarre incident when the Jamega tour van saved Liam Robinson’s ball from going out of bounds over the back of the green when his ball stuck the side of the lorry and just bounced back in play!

The remaining members of the group Jonathan Caldwell and Dale Whitnell, who were both tied at 9 under par, waited patiently while all this was going on as they prepared to act out the final scene of the event.

It was Caldwell to play first, having to hole from some 20 feet to remain at 9 under par and tied with Whitnell, who had a chance of a birdie from around 15 feet to put the matter beyond doubt.

Caldwell narrowly missed his par save and dropped back to 8 under par which then left Whitnell with the seemingly easy task of two putting from 15 feet for the win. “It went orf in me hands guv” can best describe Whitnell’s first putt that raced by the hole finishing some 4 feet past leaving him a tricky putt to win.

With nerves of steel Whitnell bravely holed out for the narrowest of wins and a nice cheque for £5,000. This left Caldwell in second place on his own with a consolation cheque for £2,000.

The Bristol Golf Club is easy on the eye and a good course to play with excellent facilities and a clubhouse where you can be fed and watered at a reasonable price. It’s well worth a visit after you’ve dropped the spouse off at the magnificent Cribbs Causeway shopping Mall!