Brook hits way out of poor patch

After battling a run of poor form since February that saw his handicap drift from two to six, it would have been easy for Shane Brook to sit out Saturday’s cold, wet and windy conditions that made golf even more difficult than usual.
But with Dad Barry keen for a final game before he heads up north for the winter and son Ethan also looking to play some rounds to get a handicap, he had his arm twisted.
And at the end of the day he was thankful that happened, regaining some of his best form to take out the Monthly Medal at the Mount Gambier Golf Club with a net 69.
That was good enough to edge out teenager Flynn Davison on a count back, the pair among just six players to beat their handicaps in the testing conditions.
Teeing off on the first hole in the afternoon group, Shane had a dream start, making par on the 1st hole and then picking up a birdie on the par-four 2nd after hitting a six-iron approach into a stiff wind to inside two metres.
Unfortunately he gave that straight back on the 3rd, but played steadily on the rest of the front nine to make the turn in good shape after a one-over par 37 off the stick.
The trio played through the rain on the 9th and 10th, but a serious downpour on the 11th saw them have to take cover and wait until the green drained before they could continue their round.
Given the conditions he did an amazing job to shoot two-over 38 on the back nine, coming in with a 75 off the stick, a result he described as an “aberration”.
“I have been really struggling since February,” he said.
“But on Saturday my approach shots were much better … my distance control was good and while I missed a couple of putts I could have made I also made a couple of longer ones so that probably evened itself out.”
Incredibly, Barry was also in contention for the Monthly Medal when the group reached the final hole. But a quadruple-bogey eight undid his good work, leaving him on a net 73 which was good enough to finish second on a count back behind Darren Turner in B Grade.
While Shane was a deserved winner on the day, there were certainly a few other hard luck stories.
Overall runner-up Davison took out C Grade with his net 69, but would have shot the lights out were it not for a nine on the par-five 7th and a 10 on the par-four 17th.
Kent Comley’s net 70 saw him finish second in A Grade, but a double- bogey six on the 9th after a perfect drive cost him a shot at victory.
Playing in the same group as Comley, fellow eight-marker Sam Letizia peppered the pin on the front nine to make knock-in birdies on the 4th, 5th, 7th and 9th, making the turn at two-under par 34 despite a three-putt double bogey on the 2nd.
Unfortunately he could not maintain that on the inward nine, a lost ball off the tee on 17 resulting in a triple-bogey that led to a 44 coming home that still saw him finish just two shots off the lead.
Thankfully the weather was much better for Thursday’s stableford competition and Robert Klintberg took full advantage to lead the 92-strong field home with an impressive 43 points.
That was four clear of Simon Browning who edged out Kym Sutherland on a count back after the pair finished with 39 points apiece.
Playing off a 36 handicap, Klintberg split his round 20/23 the highlights being four-point pars on the 6th and 15th.
Browning and Sutherland each had 20/19 rounds, but Browning’s three-point birdie on the 18th helped him get the runners-up prize.

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