Lakeside Lodge - Lodge Course - 13/04/17
My approach on the 1st wasn't bad, my first two shots gaining me 320 yards. The second, however, ended up in rough and I took a 5-iron out. This left me a 9-iron pitch that was good for length but right of the green in long grass. It's infuriating when being no more than a couple of yards off the green lands you in such a difficult lie. With the pin close I tried to gently chip out of the heavy grass but the club stalled and the ball moved only a couple of feet, but at least it was now on the short grass around the green. I putted on and two putted for 8, a disappointment after such a good approach.
The 2nd went completely wrong. My first tee shot drifted right, bounced on the sloping bank, crossed the ditch and went out of bounds. I took a second off the tee, which seemed to be safe to the left, but I had obviously put a bit of slice on the ball, which curved right and once it reached the sloping bank rolled into the water-filled ditch. Two balls lost on one hole after having not lost any over the previous 45 holes of golf. Such is the 2nd hole on the Lodge Course. I took a drop on the bank and was on the green two shots later, then needing two putts to finish. With the two penalties it was another 8. Not a good start.
I put my tee shot to the right of the green on the 3rd, chipped on and two-putted for a nett birdie 4. The 4th was even better. I had put the 5-wood back in the bag and used it on this hole as there was a bit more space to play with. I hit it well and followed up with a good hybrid, leaving me about 120 yards form the pin. My next hybrid went a bit right but rolled off the bank, allowing me to putt on and single put for a 5. Another nett birdie.
I was also lucky on the 6th. The tee shot was good but the second left me on the path to the right with the large willow and other trees between me and the green. The ball was partially under a holly bush and tried to play a low 7-iron between the trees. I was impeded by the bush and actually pricked my hand as I made the backswing, the resulting shot skewing right and seemingly heading at a pace to an out-of-bounds field. Miraculously the ball hit the horizontal wooden bar of the fence and bounced towards the green. A short pitch and two putts gave me a very welcome nett bogey 6.
Using the 5-wood again I hit 173 yards off the tee on the 7th. Unfortunately the next hybrid was heavy, but I was within an 8-iron pitch of the green. My pitch was short and right, ending up in the bunker. The clearance caught the lip of the bunker and the ball bounced back, but thankfully landed on grass. I pitched on and two-putted for 7, just scraping a nett bogey.
The 8th panned out much better. My 5-wood off the tee made 178 yards, followed by a 165 yard hybrid. The 9-iron pitch was just short but I could putt on, and then single putted for a nett birdie 5.
I now felt that I was playing much better and the 9th confirmed this. I played the hybrid off the tee to take the lake out of play. I then hit an enormous (for me) 179 yard hybrid off the fairway. The next hybrid should have made the green but I needed one more shot with the pitching wedge to get on. A long single putt then completed the hole with a par 5, another nett birdie.
There were a few mistakes today but overall I felt that my play was much more controlled. The reintroduction of the 5-wood proved to be beneficial and most of my hybrid shots off the fairway were solid. My fairway accuracy of 86% off the tee was far higher than normal and a putting average of 1.56 / hole was very respectable. Totals were 51 shots, 14 putts and 17 points. If the second hadn't been so bad I think today would have been my best 9 holes ever.
Game Golf scorecard: