Fourteen teams from clubs in the Northwest Federation enjoyed an excellent weekend of croquet competing in the club championships held at Southport on 28/29 June.
Play started at 9am each morning to allow the games to be completed by 5pm on Sunday. The weather was warm and sunny, the food good, with the atmosphere and sociability first class. Keith Roberts, ably assisted by Barry Keen expertly managed the event. There were competitions to organise in three disciplines, golf, short and association handicap. Unfortunately the advanced event had to be cancelled due to lack of support.
Southport won the golf event, Bury the handicap and Pendle the short. In a very close finish (both teams having the same points) Southport just managed to pip Bury to the overall title by virtue of having beaten them in two of the three events.
The club championship is an excellent way to introduce new players into the tournament scene. Many start with golf, progress to short and a couple of years later will be playing full lawn association handicap or advanced. Many of the players now competing in the various leagues in the Northwest Federation started their competitive croquet at the club championships and have gone on to become regular tournament players.