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The 2022 Maud Trainor competition

The Maud Trainor competition was held at the United Croquet Club during the four Fridays of February.  With thirty competitors, a seventh lawn was formed with four full sized and three 80+% courts.

This is a largely social Golf Croquet event with two timed games of one hour each day.  Rather unusually drawn games are allowed with each player awarded a half point.  

Played as a flexible Swiss event, competitors must be available for at least three of the four days to qualify for a placing.

This format often means the games get tighter as the rounds progress.  Both John Yarrall (first) and Ken Lowe (second) lost one match but John, playing all four days won seven out of eight (88%) of his games beating Ken’s five wins from six games (83%).

The third to fifth prize winners (Geoff Price, Jude Derby and Betty Inglewood) all had a draw scoring five and a half out of eight games (69%) with the placings decided by the strength of their opponents.

Detailed results are here.

Winner John Yarrall with the manager Tony O’Donnell
Runner-up Ken Lowe
Third place Geoff Price
Fourth place Judy Derby
Fifth place Betty Inglewood
Most of participants of the 2022 Maud Trainor

CCA GC Handicap doubles

This competition was held on Sunday 20 February 2022 at Fendalton Park Croquet Club.

There were 12 teams from 7 different clubs in Canterbury with player handicaps ranging from -5 to 14. The competition was fierce, the lawns were great, the weather was perfect and the sportsmanship was outstanding. There were two Round Robins of 6 teams with the top two from each block playing a semi-final with the winners playing a final for overall winner and runner-up and the losers playing for 3 and 4 positions. Determining the top two teams from each round robin block was a close contest with nothing certain until the final round was played.

The final result was a team of grandfather and grandson winning the trophy. Owen Evans and Patrick Connolly from Cashmere are the CCA GC Doubles Handicap winners. Runners up were Helen Webber and Nigel Grondin from Hornby. Third position went to Jono Hart from St James playing with Emily Marstella from Cashmere against John Borner and Mike Bunce from St Martins. Thanks must go to Bruce Clay for being the referee for the day; to Mike Dawson who was up very early to set up the lawns; and to Esme Burt and her team for the great catering offered during the day.

All in all a very pleasant day with some lovely croquet played.

Vilna Gough-Jones
Tournament Manager

Winners, Owen Evans, manager Vilna Gough-Jones, Patrick Connolly
Vilna Gough-Jones with runners up, Helen Webber, Nigel Grondin
Vilna Gough-Jones with third place Jono Hart & Emily Marstella

CCA Open 2022

The CCA Open was played from Friday 28 January 2022 over 3 days with 4 entries. There was an initial block (setting positions 1 to 4) followed by Best-of-3 playoffs (1 v 4, 2v 3 then winner v winner, and loser v loser). The venue was St James Park Croquet Club in Christchurch NZ. Lawns ran at 10 s by the end of day 1 and were faster on the following days of fine warm weather.

The overall winner was 19-year-old Josh Winter of the local Cashmere Club. His ability to make long roquets demonstrated the futility of the old idea of a next break strategy at this level, and this (GC derived) skill put him in a class ahead of the other competitors. There were unsuccessful attempts at triple peels and errors by all participants gave opponents opportunities which were not always converted into breaks. Overall it was a good weekend of play even if there were only 4 entries this year.

Full results are at

Roger Lane
Tournament Manager

Don Reyland Stars Regional Final

The Don Reyland Stars Regional Final was held in wet conditions at Holmes Park on February 5th. Six clubs, (Akaroa, Cashmere, Fendalton, Holmes Park, St Martins and United) were represented. There was a late withdrawal from Hornby due to illness. Several games went to the thirteenth hoop.

At the end of the day Josh Winter (Cashmere) was a clear winner, with five out of five wins. Runner up was Maggie Croy (Holmes Park) with three wins. This hung in the balance until the very last hoop of the tournament, when Geoff Price (United) overcame Vilna Gough-Jones (Fendalton) 7/6.

Despite the weather, the tournament was enjoyed by all. Every player had at least one win. Our National Champion Josh prevailed in every game with up to 15 extra turns against him. The least was 8 extra turns. Joshua played with his usual humbleness, and every player so enjoyed the experience of playing against him. Josh will be travelling to Thames to represent Canterbury in the “CNZ Don Reyland Stars Tournament” on the weekend of 26th/27th March.

Full results are at

(l-r) Winner Josh Winter (Cashmere), Mike Bunce (St Martins), Geoff Price (United), Vilna Gough-Jones (Fendalton Park)

Runner-up, Maggie Croy (left) (Holmes Park) with Hanne Le Lievre (Akaroa)

CCA GC Grades Primary and Silver Badge

The re-scheduled final day of this tournament was played at Cashmere Club on 15 January in sunshine, after being rained out in November. A full field of 24 players including two entrants from Awamoa Gardens in Oamaru participated.

The tournament was played in 4 blocks of 6 with the top two from each block moving on to play a quarter final, with the winners progressing to the semi-final. Four clubs were represented – John Whyte, Rangiora: Kate Milan, Awamoa Gardens: Jocelyn Partridge, St Martins and Graham Jones, Akaroa. After two hard-fought games the finalists were John Whyte and Kate Milan.

Kate had left her mallet in Oamaru playing the entire day with an unfamiliar mallet so getting to the final was a great effort. John progressed through to the final unbeaten and was hoping to make it one more win.

There were some great shots played by both players throughout the game, however, John managed to continue his 100% record and came away with the win 7 – 3.

It was a pleasure to manage the tournament and look forward to seeing all the players enter many more CCA Tournaments.

Gay Jones with John Whyte – Winner
Gay Jones with Kate Milan – Runner-up

2021 AC Handicap Singles

9 & 10 October 2021

CCA AC Handicap Singles 2021, Tournament Report

Eight keen and hardy AC players lined up for the annual Handicap Singles Tournament at Holmes Park Croquet Club last weekend.  There were to be 5 rounds, 3 rounds of block play on the Saturday when it was very cool, especially if forced to wait in the shelter for your chance to make progress round the hoops.  Semi-finals and final were held on the Sunday, when the conditions were perfect, a Goldilocks day, not too hot and not too cold.  The lawns were a treat to play on, true if not a little heavy and slow, which can be expected at this time of the year.  Thank you to the Holmes Park club for hosting this event and making us feel welcome.

All the players enjoyed their matches, especially when the result was tight, a number of games only being decided in the last minutes of the 3 hours’ time limit or in Regulation 9.  The winner of the tournament was Levi Franks, a youth player from Cashmere, who only just made into the semis with a net hoop score slightly ahead of the other two single game winners in block play. However, he had two comprehensive wins from there on, “pegging off” himself in both games. Levi retains the trophy he won in this tournament last season.  His opponent Josh Winter, also a youth player from Cashmere had cruised through the block play with three wins, his first game with two bisques only requiring 2 breaks, one of 11, the other of 15 hoops. Quite phenomenal as this is only his 3rd season of A C. The beaten semi-finalists were Marguaritte Rogers from St James and John Hearnshaw from United.

The tournament was certainly enhanced with the presence of Ian Campbell, being a very capable umpire, who officiated for the whole of the tournament. It was certainly appreciated by the players, who not only accepted a neutral opinion but also learnt some technical issues from him as well.  It was interesting that the new rule on “accidental contact in critical positions” had little effect, with players proceeding to play without the striker ball being marked at all.  Other critical strokes in play were under intense scrutiny from Ian, or players backed off attempting their shots.  Thanks for your attendance Ian, it was much appreciated.

Overall, the tournament was enjoyed by all with the highs and lows of handicap play accepted by the players in this kind of competition. Thankfully, the weather gods shone down on Sunday, and the final result was a cheerful group of players who are always seeking more opportunities of practice and competition in the classical form of the game. It is hoped that the CNZ South Island AC Tournament, due to be held at United prior to and during Show Weekend, can proceed or be postponed when CNZ Covid protocols are relaxed.  Alternatively, might it be possible for the CCA to schedule this tournament as a de facto South Island event on those dates?

Owen Evans

Tournament Manager

CCA GC Grades and Silver Badge

The Primary Grade this year was held over two days, Saturday and Sunday. The weather forecast did not look in our favour as the weekend got closer.

This year 24 players registered from Clubs across Canterbury, including two players travelling from Awamoa Gardens in Oamaru. We had 18 players at Cashmere and 6 players at St Martins on Saturday and managed to get all games finished before a light shower.

With steady rain overnight 2 of the lawns at Cashmere were not playable on Sunday. The players were very disappointed and have agreed to complete the tournament early in the new year – a date yet to be confirmed.

The Intermediate, Senior and Premiers, a total of 24 players, arrived on Sunday morning ready with wet weather clothing. After checking the lawns it was decided to go ahead with the tournament, however, we were reduced to the use of 3 lawns. Unfortunately this did mean longer wait times between games. All games were played in great spirit with many games going to the 13th hoop. The Senior Division was closely fought with the winner decided on the last hoop of the day.

Thank you to all the players  who entered the Grades this season and we look forward to setting a date for the completion of the Primary Division

Intermediate Winner:    Peter Entwistle – Barrington Club
Runner-up:                       Keelan Macfadyen – Wellington (Assoc United)
Third Place:                      Gaylia Powell – Cashmere

Senior winner:                 Dave McMillan – Akaroa
Runner-up:                       John Foster – Rangiora

Premier Winner:              Josh Winter – Cashmere
Runner-up:                        Levi Franks – Cashmere 

The Winners will also receive the CNZ Silver Badge

CCA GC Handicap Singles

On Sunday 26 September 2021 the CCA GC Handicap Singles Croquet Tournament was held at Fendalton Park Croquet Club and St Martins Croquet Club.

There were 32 entries which were organized into 4 blocks of 8 players with two blocks at each of the venues. The weather forecast wasn’t great but all 32 hardy souls turned up for the tournament. In spite of the cold and fortunately very little rain, there was some great croquet and a very pleasant though competitive spirit among the players.

Each player had five games in their block and the winners of each block then played a semi-final and final. The top players were Mark Winter from Cashmere, Galina Worley from United, Pat Pidgeon and Graham Jones from Akaroa. The semi-finals saw Mark and Graham battling it out in the finals for the trophy. It was a keenly contested game, going into overtime at an equal score.

Final results were Mark Winter as winner of the GC Handicap Singles tournament, Runner up Graham Jones and third place Pat Pidgeon.

My thanks go to Cheryl Morrall for managing the blocks of players at St Martins; to Gay Jones and Tim Slack for being the referees for the day; to John Borner and St Martins for agreeing to host the extra players at very short notice; and to Mike Dawson and others at Fendalton Park for their help in hosting the tournament at Fendalton. It was a great day !

Vilna Gough-Jones (Tournament Manager)

Tim Slack as referee in the Hi-viz vest and players in their warm jackets
Some serious concentration on the lawns
Winner Mark Winter with Vilna Gough-Jones
Runner up Graham Jones with Vilna Gough-Jones
Pat Pidgeon, third place, with Vilna Gough-Jones

AC Interprovincial – South Canterbury v Canterbury

On Sunday 19 September, Waireka Croquet Club in Ashburton hosted the annual AC Interprovincial Championship, with Canterbury travelling to defend the trophy won in 2020

A total of 20 experienced and newer players from Fendalton, Cashmere, St James, United, Holmes Park and Rangiora make the trek down. We arrived in the sunshine, and it remained for the rest of day with a cool breeze from time to time.

The game format was Championship Levels with three x two-hour games. At the end of round one the South Canterbury team held a one-point lead, however, Canterbury rallied during round two to finish with a 35-point lead going into round three. Strong games by Leo and Tim, and Marguaritte and Gay contributing 23 of those extra points. A great effort in the final round saw Canterbury stretch the lead to 43. This round saw strong games played by Josh and James, Myles and Bruce, Jono and Neville, and Geraldine and Helene.

The final score Canterbury 376 South Canterbury 333. Basil the Ram is safely back in Canterbury for another year.

Team photo – some were a bit shy and preferred to hide behind others
Marguaritte accepting Basil