Jon Symons has something of a love/hate relationship with golf. He’s improving fast but it’s taking it out of him. On these pages he keeps us up to date with his mission to reduce his handicap.

Below is the latest:

Diary of a 12.9 handicapper

Dear Diary,

It has been a few weeks since my last entry, mostly due to the weather and because last weekend I was playing up at Boat of Garten on a Stag Do.

Firstly, let me start by saying that playing golf whilst being force fed vodka and tonic did not improve my ability to play golf. Boat of Garten is an amazing little course though, tight as they come and extremely tricky in places. I was absolutely delighted with my 30 stableford points if I am honest, I actually hit the ball pretty well throughout the day and really enjoyed it.

Secondly, after Saturday I have come to realise two things. I actually like playing in the rain and I have become a complete bottler! It was always going to happen with my mental strength, I was just hoping I could maintain my ability to close out good rounds for a little longer in my golfing career. Saturday was a classic Jon Symons round, out in 8 over after having a massive ‘head off’ on the 6th green and completely ruining the 9th hole, I sttod on the 11th tee 9 over par. Then something happended that has never happened to me before, I actually started playing consecutive good shots, so good that by the time I got to the 17th tee, I was still 9 over par. Now I only needed to finish 5-4 to break 80 for the first time in my medal playing career.

Things started well with a drive that split the 17th fairway followed by a 6 iron onto the green about 10 feet short of the hole. Now, a birdie on the 17th is a rare thing for me and to get one now would put me back to 8 over par. I got greedy. Fired my putt past the hole and missed the putt back from about 5 foot. A 3 jab! I was not pleased. Still, I now only needed a par 4 up the last for a very respectable score of 10 over and 2 over for the back nine. Once again I got off the tee well, driving back down the 17thfor safety and leaving about 150 yards in to the green. Once again, my ego decided to play a shot that my golfing talent could not match, the pin was tucked in front right behind the bunker, I went looking for a birdie when a par was all  needed. Boom, in the sand! I hate the sand! I managed to scramble my ball out the bunker in one and two putted for a net 66. In many ways I was pleased with how I played but could not help feeling that the 2 double bogeys on the front 9 and the bogey-bogey finish could have been avoided. It is coming though.

So, once again I am down another shot and in to the 12s, I am going to amend my yearend target to 11, I would have certainly taken that at the start of the year and if I continue to play like I did for sections of Saturday I should achieve my goal.

Until next week…………………

Official Handicap: 12.9

Season Target: 11.4

Bridgieness Level: 3/10

J Symons

13 Handicapper.


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