A sympathetic response to last week?s blog recounting my Stableford misery at Wentworth has persuaded me that there is a great deal more interest out there in my game than I might ever have imagined. Assuming that no-one cared about my remarkably lacklustre performances, I have previously tended to concentrate on other golfing matters and have spared you the tedium of my on-course travails.
Although lacking anything remotely resembling a touch around the greens, I am nevertheless endowed with great sensitivity in other areas of human activity and a genuinely enquiring mind. Why, I therefore asked myself, would visitors to this website be at all interested in my golf game when my fellow bloggers are so much more adept at swinging a club?
From the European Tour there?s the extraordinary talented Bradley Dredge, whilst from the fringes of the professional game there?s Fergus Blisset and George Asprey who, I believe, play off handicaps of one and three respectively. Surely their gripping tales of wrestling with par, course records, consecutive birdies, tournament triumphs, eagle opportunities and the rest are far more thrilling than my bleak and failing efforts to reduce the blob count.
After giving it more thought than I do to practicing, I think I may have an explanation. Although watching or reading about the best players provides us with an aspirational boost and a brief escape into golf fantasyland, perhaps it?s too far removed from our own bitter experiences to strike a sufficiently sympathetic chord. In a way, it?s Escapism as opposed to Reality or, if you prefer, Dallas versus East Enders. My fellow hackers may admire Tiger but can more easily identify with me.
Anyway, for those who have the stomach for another horribly grim instalment let me briefly recount my most recent round. Ominously, everything was going spookily well. Because I previously had trouble locating it, I let the Sat Nav lady guide me to the London Club, which is quite close to Brands Hatch in Kent. I arrived in good time, ate a hearty cooked breakfast, liked the look of my playing partners and started on The Heritage course with two textbook bogeys. Could this be my day and the long overdue triumph I so richly deserve for being such a nice guy? ?No? was the emphatic answer as I turned with a six measly points.
My double-digit target looked like a distant dream until, walking disconsolately past the lovely clubhouse, I remembered Swing Thought 158 ?Don?t Straighten the Right Leg Under Any Circumstance.? As those of you who have been to Hell and back will know, when you?ve only got six points at the turn, you don?t feel like you?re risking a whole lot by trying something different.
The glorious tenth hole ? a true test of golf ? I parred; ditto, the stunning par three 11th. Despite grisly chips and lamentable putting, I amassed 15 points on the first eight of the back nine and had, thank God, smashed through the psychologically important 20 point barrier. What a gutsy competitor I am! Feeling pretty invincible on the 18th tee, as I surveyed a truly beautiful finishing hole, I boldly announced to my three playing partners ? Paul, Nick and Bob ? that I would start the ball towards the trees on the right of the fairway and draw it into the middle of the fairway. Having accomplished that precisely as predicted, I proceeded to crunch a four wood onto the green. The birdie putt lipped out but three more points, a delicious lunch in the hugely impressive clubhouse and me and Sat Nav lady drove home cheerfully.
The Big Question now is will I inflict more of my golfing exploits on you shortly or take pity and spare you that agony?