Patrick Eagar, the doyen of cricket photographers, once again demonstrated his prowess as a golfer when he snapped up the winnerâ€™s medal in the SJA Spring Golf Day at Surbiton.
Eagar, a regular winner at SJA golf days, was also presented with three bottles of Chateau Millas wine, kindly donated by SJA member and fencing expert Graham Morrison, as a result of his Stableford score of 38 points â€” an excellent return in awkward, windy conditions.
Completing a smudgersâ€™ one-two, second place and two bottles of Morrisonâ€™s finest went to freelance photographer Hugh Routledge who carded 35 points.
Third place and one bottle of wine went to former SJA chairman Paul Trow, whose score of 34 points consigned last yearâ€™s winner, Chester Stern (33 points), to fourth spot.
However, football writer Stern did not go home empty-handed because he won the longest drive prize on Surbitonâ€™s long par-4 16th hole. His 250-yard effort was rewarded with a beautiful but weighty coffee-table book containing some of the finest contemporary travel writing about Italy and suitably glossy photography.
The winning team (best two scores out of three to count on each hole) â€” Trow and guests Terry Probert and Don Cave â€” also each won copies of the book, which had been kindly donated by the Italian Tourist Board.
A total of 15 golfers teed it up at the well-presented and hospitable Surrey club â€” 10 SJA members and five guests â€” and they were joined at lunch by SJA Chairman Barry Newcombe and Trevor Bond, who co-organised the day with Paul Trow, invaluably assisted by Surbiton member David Emery.
Probert won the guestsâ€™ prize – a boxed tie and matching cuff-links, sporting a rakishly pink and grey pattern – with a total of 39 points which could easily have been much higher. He also collected the nearest-the-pin prize of half-a-dozen golf balls after stroking a 9-iron to within 12 feet of the cup at the short 13th. Alas, he went on to three-putt!
Second in the guestsâ€™ section with 36 points was Simon Mason, an SJA golf debutant and guest of Peter Luck, who also received six balls.
In keeping with the light-hearted spirit of the day, a couple of less-than-serious prizes were presented to the “tail end Charlies” in the two sections â€” Peter Luck received a Trion:Z bracelet which is designed to give wearers “good vibes” and Hugh Routledgeâ€™s guest Peter Nunn, who normally figures at the business end of the prizegiving, was presented with a “Mind the Gap” key-ring.
All that remained was for Barry Newcombe to thank the staff at Surbiton for a most enjoyable day, and the weather gods for keeping the rain at bay.
The SJAâ€™s autumn meeting will be held at Muswell Hill GC in north London on Monday September 13 when the Associationâ€™s major trophy, in memory of the late, great golf photographer Phil Sheldon, will be up for grabs. To book a place in the field, or for more information, please contact Paul Trow on 07973-862747 or email@example.com.
Other upcoming SJA events
Sun Apr 25: SJA Cricket Day. Enjoy corporate hospitality with friends and colleagues, and bring along your partner, as Lancashire take on Surrey. Tickets £65 each. Click here for booking details.
Wed May 19: A Question of Boris:The SJA’s second “Sporting Question Time”, this time with London Mayor Boris Johnson at City Hall. This will be strictly for SJA members only. To book your ticket, click here to send us an email with your name, SJA membership number and address, writing â€śSporting Question Time with Borisâ€ť in the subject field
Mon Sep 13: SJA Autumn Golf Day, Muswell Hill GC. To book, contact Paul Trow (07973 862747).
All dates and details subject to change.
Join the SJA today – click here for details and membership application form