On Saturday 16th July, 96 players played in the inaugural Neil Watson Tray – an 18-hole stableford event.
After long and outstanding service to the club the Committee agreed to have Neil’s name etched in perpetuity on a silver tray presented to the club by his good friend Ron Birmingham, who also sponsored the day.
Neil passed away in August 2021. He was 84 years old and one of the club’s longest serving members, having joined in 1953 as a junior member. He represented the club in Pennants over many years and won many Honour Board events with his “sweet swing”. He was one of nature’ s true gentlemen.
After the morning field had finished Theodore Wilson (27 H’Cap) led the way with 37 points. Starting from the 4th he looked anything but a winner as he could only manage 17 points for the first 10 holes. Then over the last 8 holes 20 points came his way including 1×4 pointer and 4×3 pointers.
On 36 points were Luke Bai (21), James Bai (17) and Thomas Salter (12).
The scoring in the afternoon did not improve with the best round coming from Brett Thompson (8) with 36 points – until the last card of the day was submitted by Greg Polla (12).
Greg started from the 6th and after 9 holes had 19 points including a “wipe” on the 12th hole. 5×3 pointers over the space of 7 holes saw him finish with 39 points. Some of his best mates suggested that as he lost the last hole, the 5th, that the top button on his shirt had “tightened” somewhat.
He thought he had played himself out of it but that was not to be and he won by 2 points from Theodore Wilson.
Greg attributed his win to his putter which coincidentally once belonged to the man the trophy is named after – Neil Watson.
Thanks to Ron Birmingham providing the Perpetual Trophy and sponsoring the day. Well done to Greg for getting his name on another bit of silverware.
From Greg Fitzhardinge