IN THE BUNKER WITH MICK THE GRIP

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Santa practising his putting
Santa practising his putting

Members of the Upper Monclair CC, New Jersey, US,  will be donning Santa suits for their annual Kris Kringle Open. Last year 160 players competed in the tournament in aid of local families and children in need.  They collected hundreds of toys and raised over $20,000 at the after-golf party and raffle   As long as Santa finishes his round before Christmas Eve.

THIS YEAR’S PRESIDENTS CUP will be played on a combination of 12 holes from Royal Melbourne’s 6645 yd. West Course and six holes from the  6579 yd. East Course.  Dr. Alister MacKenzie’s Royal Melbourne, on the famous Melbourne Sandbelt, is ranked No 5 in the world, and the West Course is Australia’s No. 1.

From December 12/15th  Captain Tiger Woods’s U.S. Team will take on Captain Ernie Els’s International team in match-play.  There is no prize money, players allocate an equal portion of the funds generated to their chosen charities.

The International team, who have never taken the Cup quite as seriously as their opponents, will include four rookies, whereas Tiger’s title-holders will consist of some big guns including Iron Man (Dustin Johnson) and Captain America (Patrick Reed)  and they all intend to Win or Die Trying. The host country won’t give a XXXX who wins, apart from cheering on their home grown talent, Marc Leishman and Adam Scott.

The only thing missing from the President’s Cup will be – the President.  Mr. Trump wanted to present the trophy again, but when he found it was in Melbourne Australia and not Melbourne Florida decided against it.

TIGER WOODS WAS a celebrity long before he appeared on the  PGA Tour.  On October 6, 1978  two-year old Tiger appeared with his father Earl on The Mike Douglas Show, displaying his golf skills off an artificial turf mat.  The Tiger Cub also appeared on the “That’s Incredible” show at the age of 5. However talented you are it helps to have pushy parents.

AT THE ZOZO CHAMPIONSHIP in Japan last month  Woods finished his weather-delayed week with a birdie at the 72nd hole for a three-stroke victory over Hideki Matsuyama. It was his 82nd triumph on the PGA Tour and matched Sam Snead on the all-time victory list.

Six year old Woods actually  played two holes with Snead in 1982.  “I remember hitting the ball into a creek, playing it out of the water and making bogey,” Woods laughed. “Then I bogeyed the last and he went par-par. The only time I ever got a chance to play with Sam Snead, I was 2-down through two!”

AT THE 2019 WORLD GOLF AWARDS, held in Abu Dhabi,  La Finca Golf and Spa Resort scooped ‘Spain’s Best Golf Hotel’ prize.  The winner of Spain’s Best Golf Course was La Galiana Campo de Golf, Valencia.

Colin Montgomerie was awarded Golf Course designer of the year, and also received the Lifetime Achievement Award for his outstanding contribution to golf.  Judges obviously weren’t around in Indonesia when his ball mysteriously re-located itself, or at Valderrama or Gleneagles when he stormed off the course, or at Winged Foot when he blew his top, leading him to be called “Crotchety Colin, the Incredible Sulk.”

His Turkish golf courses are quite good though.

PETE COWEN CHIPPING TIP:   “One of the biggest faults I see is people standing too far away from the ball, having little control of the butt end of the club.  If the butt travels too far back or forward when chipping and pitching, it causes the bottom of the arc to change which causes inconsistencies.  If you  minimise the movement your consistency will improve.”

I consistently follow Pete Cowen’s tips, especially at La Serena, but sadly my ball still consistently ends  up in a lake.

Just to say a heartfelt thank you  to all the golf society members on the Orihuela Costa who have come up trumps once again, contributing in excess of €8,000 to this year’s Royal British Legion Poppy Golf Appeal.

Until next time: Happy Golfing, and a very Happy Christmas and New Year to you all.

Contact Mick for regripping and repairs.  Tel. 638 859 475.

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