LONDON OPEN MINIGOLF TOURNAMENT 2006
Broomfield Park, June 17
Greece winning the European Championships…
Graham Dott winning the snooker…
England winning the Ashes…
Arsenal getting into the Champions League…
Ted McIver wearing a pair of jeans and a t-shirt…
There have been many shocks and surprises in the world of sport over the past few years, so in the run up to this year London Minigolf Open punters could be forgiven for being cautious about predicting the outcome. Players from all over the country arrived at Broomfield Park Adventure Golf on Saturday 17th June to compete in the 4th London Open.
Only once every last stone had been removed from the cups did the competition get underway. As the first round progressed it started to become more and more apparent that a new name would be appearing on the trophy. The great great grandfather of British minigolf Lionel Bender and the newest recruit to the British Minigolf Team, Jam Trubridge both carded 37s, whilst a trio of British Champions - Ruth Bullin, Ted McIver and Jon Angel went one better with 36s. Coming off the 18th the three might have thought they were leading the field. Well, they were wrong.
It was in fact David Corkett who had stormed into the lead with a new course record of 34. His round included stunning aces on the two toughest holes - 17th and 18th, as well as the horseshoe 11th! At half time there were gasps of aghastment as the news was relayed from player to player. Crunching of crisps and guzzling of coke could also be heard as the participants tucked in to some free refreshments.
So the second round began in searing heat and all eyes and other sensory organs were on Corkett as he battled to hold his nerve against the experienced match-players McIver and Angel. But David seemed to be fully focussed on the job in hand, despite the numerous celebrations coming from nearby Group B. In fact, there were 35 celebrations as Jam Trubridge produced a near faultless display of putting to challenge for the title.
As David arrived at the 18th tee, he needed another ace here for victory. Up until that point, the only person ever to have aced the 18th twice in succession was Scott Coe, in a friendly match in 2002. Could David emulate that feat? Alas not, but an excellent two meant that he would face Jam in a play-off for the top prize.
But first 3rd place had to be settled. Jon Angel and Keith Kellard - winners of the British Doubles Championship earlier in the season as the "Sideburns" duo found themselves in a sudden-death play-off with 2005 London Open victor, Steve Vallory. Keith fell at the first hurdle, so Steve and Jon moved to the 2nd hole where Jon playing first, had the opportunity to put the pressure on. Unfortunately a badly judged tee-shot and a careless second made it easy for Steve, who's two earned him a £25 cheque. With the rising petrol prices though, it probably wouldn't be enough to get him back to Welwyn Garden City!
And so David Corkett and Jam Trubridge strolled to hole 1 for their play-off. The toss favoured Jam who elected to tee off first. Unfortunately for him, his shot was overhit leaving a difficult second. As Jam's third putt dropped, David knew it was all in his hands. He played a textbook shot from the tee and it was all over - David Corkett was the new London Open Champion earning £150 and over 700 ranking points, thanks to his new course record. And all this was achieved with just a course ball! Jam earned £75, enough to buy around 600 minigolf balls on German EBay!
At the closing ceremony, Alan and Mustapha Kdadir presented all the prizes, including the £25 Novice prize to Brighton Minigolf Club's Kevin Botto. Jon Angel thanked Ian, Lorraine and Paul Scagnelli and Alan Kdadir on behalf of the BMGA for kindly hosting and sponsoring the event once again.
Money continued to change hands long into the afternoon, with Bill Bullin and Tim Davies almost completely selling out of minigolf equipment. Rumour has it that David Corkett is holding out for £100 for his course ball. Pity there are no Russian minigolfers about!
So all that's left are a few questions:
How many more play-offs will there be at Broomfield Park?
Is 'aghastment' a word?
Will Tim ever win Wimbledon, erm I mean the London Open? (force of habit)
Exactly how many profiteroles can you buy with a pony?
Answers on a scorecard please
|Pos||Name||Round 1||Round 2||TOTAL||Ave||Rank points|
|1||David Corkett 1||34*||38||72||36.00||665|
|3||Steve Vallory 2||39||37||76||38.00||465|
* New BMGA record
1 won play-off at first
2 won play-off at second extra hole
Words & Pics: Jon Angel
Previous results: 2005 2004 2003