The Foxton Senior A Grade Pennants have had a frustrating run with injuries and other matters affecting performances this season.
That changed for the good when the teams selectors elected to really try something out of the ordinary and experiment with a mix of enthusiastic youth and aged experience.
Calling on up and coming young talent Anthony Ilton-Maher to go into 'battle' against some wiley opposition at Palmerston Golf Club last weekend.
The 'young gun' had the opportunity to play alongside seasoned Wanganui-Manawatu Rep Junior Tatana in the foursomes against Wanganui and won well.
Of the aged experience Tom Ratima has stepped up ( tongue in cheek - making no reference to his gait) big time since his return from South Africa representing a 'select' New Zealand combination.
I had the great fortune to be at the match with Wanganui on a beautiful Manawatu afternoon on Sunday 3 April 2016 and witnessed some great and not so great Golf.
In the afternoon singles playoffs. It came down to the final hole of the day for the teams where Alton-Maher needed to win to forge a half and seasoned Foxton representative Barry Peta needing to win the hole and finish one up. This would give the team a win against Wanganui and some valuable points.
What a hole it turned out to be. The 'young gun' looked to have lost all chance when his drive faltered and finished in trees about two hundred metres from the Green. His opposition was in the clear and only about one hundred metres from the Green. You would think and in likely position to either Birdie or Par the hole.
What happened next is what makes Golf at times both frustrating and exciting. Ilton-Mayer smashed a 3 Wood onto the Green while his opposition overshot the Green and nevertheless recovered but, with a long putt for his fourth, which missed. Bogey for the opposition.
Barry Peta recovered from a "thinned" second shot pin-high to the right of the Green, to be left with an 8 foot putt for par. His opposite putted in for a bogey five leaving all attention on Barry to secure a winning putt. He duly obliged with a great pressure putt.
The 'young gun' Ilton-Maher then needed two putts for a par and victory. He left his lag up short by about six foot. All eyes were focussed on what was to be the most important putt of the day to secure victory. Anthony Ilton-Maher rammed the putt into the hole and victory was secured.
This past weekend the Pennants played on home course at Foxton against Levin securing a comfortable victory and the possibility of getting into the top four playoffs. This is not going to be easy with the final round against a determined Taihape combination difficult to beat on home turf.
The highlight of the day was some typical 'razzle-dazzle' from Junior Tatana when he secured a Hole in One on hole ten for the home team. Earlier in the season he again had a strong performance at the Lawnmaster Classic at Manawatu Golf Club finishing in a tie for sixth in the Amateur Ranks and twelfth overall with seasoned Professional Michael Hendry again too strong in the pro ranks to win at -17. Click here ... to get the official Pennants results and detail from MWGA.