This popular event was contested by 16 players with handicaps 3 to 7, hailing from 6 separate clubs in the south and south east. The weather was kind throughout.
On day one all played all in two separate blocks. In Blue block Jane Powell (Ealing, 5 handicap) won with 6 wins and second place was between Andrew Fall (Enfield, 4) and Charlie Sale (Ealing, 4) both on 5 wins. On net hoops Andrew was placed first with 16, Charlie had 15. Commiserations Charlie!
Red block was won by David Graham (Ealing, 5) from Martin Read (Hurlingham, 5) both on 6 wins and the same 15 net hoops, but David had beaten Martin 7-6 in their match after Martin had previously looked unstoppable. Bridget Goodman (Ealing, 3) was 3rd on 5 wins.
In the semi-finals Andrew was too strong for David, winning in two games. Jane and Martin's semi was much harder fought, Jane eventually winning 2-1, her reliable play countering Martin's occasional brilliance.
The final was equally close: Andrew took the first game 7-5, Jane came back strongly winning 7-1 and she started the third better, going 2 hoops up. By this time a good crowd had gathered to watch the fun. The 3rd hoop was crucial, Andrew turning the tide and keeping his momentum to go 5-3. The 11th hoop saw a tense battle before Andrew won it, effectively Jane's last chance. Though she made it 4-6 Andrew had prime positions on hoop 11 and Jane could not clear. 7-4 to Andrew, who thereby retained his title.
Third place was taken by David who beat Martin again, this time in two games. The second day consolation blocks were won by Malcolm Beacham (Hurlingham and Sussex County, 5) who won all his games and Robert Cook (Cheam, 3) with 4 wins. Over the two days almost one in 5 games went to the golden hoop. All enjoyed the excellent conditions and customary Hurlingham hospitality and thanked Tony for his impeccable management.