The 2012 West Sussex Invitational
Thursday, 20th September 2012
The Eton team, having lost its opening match of the season, had something to prove during the school year’s first significant tournament. The two pairs were Alvarez-Rendueles (GRP) and Bery (PBS) , along with Blake (PGW) and Cooper OS (MJP). Normally, the West Sussex Invitational is viewed as a warm up tournament to see how well the team has gelled before other tournaments later in the year, and as a means of assessing out the potential competition from other schools. The team therefore was able to enter the tournament in a relaxed state of mind, unburdened by any excessive or unreasonable expectations.
After enjoying a delicious meal in the clubhouse, as has always been the case, we prepared ourselves mentally and physically for the round. The format was foursomes, which is also known as alternate shot. Alvarez and Bery started promisingly, going even par through the first eight holes with some inspirational putting, however this trend would unfortunately not continue as they received penalty strokes on the ninth and eleventh holes. They managed to keep calm as they knocked their tee shot to an inch on the 15th hole and tapped in for birdie. The partnership managed to fend off the challenges from the course over the final few holes, finishing with a gross score of 28 and a net score of 31 points.
Blake and Cooper teed off on the ninth hole and got things going immediately, with Cooper making a long 30 foot putt on the tenth, very similar to that of Justin Rose on Ryder Cup Sunday. Blake would follow by smashing his drives down the middle of the fairways. Both Blake and Cooper were off to a flying start, however this also was short-lived as they lost a ball on the first hole (their tenth of the day) and found it difficult to recover from the setback. A lack of composure on the greens would undo this partnership as they finished with a gross score of 25 and a net score of 30 points.
In the end Eton finished second with a total gross point score of 53, adrift of the eventual winners, Wellington College. It was a great season opener and the team looks forward to being part of more successful golf events in the near future.