The inaugural Canterbury Golf Croquet Open was played in stunning weather at St Martins Croquet Club on Sunday 28th March. The 15-player field had a good mixture of young and more experienced players was well suited to a flexible Swiss event, which saw players matched up against opponents with similar win records, and very little waiting between games.
The hoops were very well set and provided a good challenge to all players. All present were treated to generous catering in a mainly outdoor setting as St Martins did a great job of hosting the event the day after a sudden shift to COVID level 2 was announced for the region.
Relatively new players Carolyn Smith and Mark Walker from Akaroa acquitted themselves very well in a field packed with minus players and cheerfully stepped up against a wide range of opponents.
Reece McCorkindale, who entered the event off a 7 handicap, gave Duncan Dixon a scare (5-7), and Cashmere star Josh Winter (6-7), before ending the event with a win against top seed for the upcoming NZ Golf Croquet invitation, Levi Franks (7-6). This earned Reece the manager’s prizes for the most index points gained, and the most games played (9), as well as a handicap reduction to 3.
In total 51 games were played, with several players choosing to stop after playing 5 games, having had an 11 hour playing day in the Doubles event the previous day. The younger players all managed to complete between 7 and 9 games, as did Canterbury Croquet Association president Owen Evans. The number of close results shows how effective the event format is at providing many well balanced matches.
Pre-event favourites Logan McCorkindale, Duncan Dixon and Josh Winter shared honours with all players having at least one loss leading to Logan and Duncan tying on 7/8 wins, and the tournament coming to a tie-breaker of “quality of opponents”. Duncan won out by the narrowest of margins – his opponents had played 50 games and had 23 wins, while Logan’s opponents had 23/51.
Congratulations to all players and many thanks to St Martins CC for hosting an excellent event, and congrats to Duncan who added another title to his impressive collection.
Full results are at https://croquetscores.com/2021/gc/cca-open/singles-flexible-swiss