Chris Boughton’s golf column: Nurse’s stunning round

BIRDIE-LADEN ROUND: Craig Nurse
BIRDIE-LADEN ROUND: Craig Nurse

It was a mild winter’s day for Bury Golf Club’s February weekend stableford competition, with little wind and the leading golfers took full advantage of the favourable conditions.

There were seven scores of 40 or more, which must be close to a winter golf Stableford-scoring record at the club.

Traditionally, low handicap golfers do not tend to make their best scores in the winter, but 3 handicapper (now 2hcp) Craig Nurse blew that theory right off the course with a stunning Stableford score of 45 points.

Club professional Matt Alderton said: “Craig’s score included six birdies in a row from holes 4 to 9, which is pretty impressive golf.”

In total, his amazing round included eight birdies, eight pars and two bogeys, with 10 single putts and only 26 putts over the 18 holes. Apparently, he also had four lip-outs.

Thomas Brough (11hcp) and Stephen Duffety (5hcp) will both be pleased with their 40-point scores for second and third places, despite being five points adrift of the leader in Division One.

Robert Alderman (17hcp) will be happy with his 45pts and first place in Division Two, followed by Shaun Talbot (16hcp) 41pts. Ray Coleman took third place on countback from Daniel Bright in fourth, both scoring 40pts.

The leading scorers in Division Three were Benjamin Hyett (39pts) and Martin Crack (38pts).

Craig’s score, while exceptional, was nearly eclipsed by Elaine Bonney and Clare Sykes, who took on storm Doris last Thursday, on the Bury course.

By the time they reached the 17th, as the sole participants in the Ladies’ Mid-Week Stableford, Elaine said: “Doris was really starting to blow.”

But they were unstoppable and both scored a remarkable 33 points (Clare won on countback).

After three of the four rounds of the Seniors’ Glasswell Cup, Simon Howe is in a strong position at the top of the leader board with 112 points. Current runner-up Steve Clark needs 39pts in the last round to overhaul Howe and will hope his opponent scores less than 37pts.

The format is an 18-hole Stableford with the points scored in each round contributing to the overall best three from four score. The final round is on March 6.

The Suffolk

There were also a couple of scores in the 40s on the same weekend, down the road at The Suffolk Golf Club, in their February Stableford competition. Ivan Snelling (11hcp) returned to form with 42pts, ahead of runner-up Pete Cocksedge (19hcp) who carded 40. Third place was taken by Alf Sandford with 38.

After two rounds of the second quarter weekend order of merit, Snelling leads the table with 18pts. Dave King lies second with 10pts.

Mick Davey is back on top of the mid-week order of merit table after a convincing win in the latest Wednesday competition. In difficult conditions, his net medal score of 68 was five shots ahead of Chris Tate in second place. Steve Thorp took third with net 75.

Ron Hazell also had a convincing win in the club’s annual Three Clubs and a Putter social competition on Sunday.

His 43pts was an exceptional score considering he only had four clubs to select from. Countback (38pts) placed Bob Stevens second ahead of Glen Barker.

Thetford

Jack Yule scored 36 points off his handicap of Plus 3 but finished out of the prizes in Thetford Golf Club’s February Midweek Stableford. Yule began badly with three putts on the first green, but had eagles at the sixth and 13th, as well as two birdies in a round of 69.

He finished behind a trio of players with 37pts, with 15-handicap Wayne Prigg taking top spot on countback from Steve Cobb (10hcp) and Ian Ramsay (12hcp).

The fifth round of the club’s Winter League was won by Michael Gutherson and Ian Ramsay with 40pts. They finished ahead of Robert Taylor and Iain Yule (38pts) and Norrie Dickson and Brian Youngs (35pts).

With just one round to play, Taylor and Yule have opened up a convincing lead at the top. They have a total of 144pts, with Burridge/Smith on 137pts, Hensby/Murgolo on 134pts, Gutherson/Ramsay on 133pts and Henfield/Pearce on 132pts.

Suffolk Winter Alliance

On a mild day, 80 players including three professionals played a Brett Vale course in good winter condition. ​

The professional prize was won, once again, by Sam Forgan (Stowmarket) with a two over par 72. Dean Fairweather (Breckland Pines) was runner-up with 74. ​

The Fourball Betterball Stableford was won by David Yates (Braintree) and Steve Tree (Stoke-by-Nayland) with 48pts.

Brian Castle and Mike Moore came second with 45pts and moved up to joint second place in the Order of Merit table, six points behind long-time leader Ian Benson. All three are Stoke-by-Nayland golfers.

Alan Garrett and Chris Whyatt ​(Bury St Edmunds) were third in the Fourball with

The next meeting is also a Fourball Betterball competition and is at Diss Golf Club.