South-East Federation Golf Croquet Championship
This was the fourth year this event has been staged. Although entries were very slow at the start, a final compliment of 16 players was reached. As well as the expected minus-players, it was very pleasing to see three new players from Worthing with higher handicaps choosing this as their first tournament and thoroughly enjoying the experience.
The championship was played at Compton under very sunny and hot conditions. As usual the Compton lawns were very fast and in the main quite true. Initially the play was in two blocks of eight with all-play-all in a single 19-point game. Block play was completed on the Saturday with Bill Arliss heading block A closely followed by Pierre Beaudry and Jon Diamond all with 5 wins and Roy Ware on 4 wins. Block B had a clear winner with Simon Carter on 7 wins with Mark Hamilton and Daphne Gaitley on 5 wins and Julian Stair on 4 wins. The top four in each block then played in a best of three 13-point matches knockout, whilst a second knockout was arranged for the lower placings in the block.
After the first knockout round, Bill Arliss met Mark Hamilton and Simon Carter met Pierre Beaudry in the semi-finals. Both Mark and Simon had two straight games victories to reach the final which went to Simon in two games. In the playoff for third place, Bill and Pierre had a close three-game match which eventually went to Bill. Simon proved a very worthy champion, only dropping one game (in a best-of-three match) over the weekend.