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Newsletter November 2015

November Newsletter

When the Saints go marching in

With the greatest respect this newsletter doubts that there are many saints amongst the current members but, if there are, they remain better hidden than Durrington Walls. November the 1st., is All Saints Day in many countries of a particular religious persuasion. Merv Coombes claims to be a ‘Saint’ of some standing and regularly attends St. Mary’s, although his persuasions are of a different kind. Hop harvest and round ball game spring to mind.

November Newsletter
The saints
November Newsletter
Wish this was a pint


The well known and much heard song brings the great Louis Armstrong to mind, a musician and entertainer remembered by all and forever. More than one can say for Florence and The Machine, Jamie XX, Eska, and Aphex Twin, all so well known on the current musical scene one forgets why one bothered to note their names!

November Newsletter
Louis Armstrong

Phip Fitzsimons’ Memorial Trophy. Europa. 2nd

This is an annual invitation event, limited to Past Captains and their Guests, played in memory of FBD’s former CEO who died prematurely a couple of years ago. The competition is followed by a meal hosted by the Company. It was nice to see Francisco Cervilla again. A rare sight at La Cala these days but a great competitor and man of some standing in the Spanish game.

Top of the leaderboard eventually were:
1st 33 Danny Rees
2nd 32 Alan Jewett
3rd 32 Carol Rees (on handicap)

Kia Borjesson won the Friends’ Trophy, also with 32 points.

Unsolicited attack on protective veteran

November Newsletter

This cap has seen service. It has experienced front line action on many occasions. Respected and revered in at least one household. A legend in its own car boot. It carried the scars of battle with pride and did not deserve the verbal attack accusing it of being sweaty, grubby, old and disgusting. “Put it in the washing machine” was the suggestion which followed the outburst. Being of an obedient and obliging nature, but with heavy heart, your editor did just that with the result that the hat is now characterless and but a shadow of its former self. How anyone who carries a head cover like this could be so unkind is hard to believe, Johan.

November Newsletter


Captains’ Trophy. Stableford. Europa. 3rd

Unfortunately, and for the second time, this prestigious competition had to be postponed because of the threat of heavy rain. It is reasonable to expect, however, that with the appointment of the Rain Goddess as Lady Captain 2016, these irritating hiccups will not be permitted.

Lone ranger. America. 8th

November Newsletter

Danny Rees is a painstaking team captain and a verbally expressive player. These attributes were to the fore as he tried to cope with seemingly ever changing team size prior to play beginning. Subsequently his numeracy was also worthy of note, the speed with which he tallied 3 and 3 to make 6, for example, was to be admired. Unfortunately his best laid plans led to the wrong players being on the wrong holes at the wrong times. Whilst it would be incorrect to suggest that tails were between legs as his team settled in the clubhouse, it nevertheless came as a considerable shock when they were summoned to collect bottles of wine from Pauline Hilliard, MC for the day. Full results were;

1st 80 Derek Steel, Damian Murphy, Hazel Gilchrist, Pauline Hilliard
2nd 76 Danny Rees, Jack Perry, Jan Debrauwer, Penelope Sheriff
3rd 75 Ursula Wetzel, Ria Van Wershoven, Bobo Syversen, Peter Robinson (on handicap)

November Newsletter
November Newsletter
November Newsletter


Captains’ Trophy. Stableford. America. 10th

At last the show hit the road. At the third attempt players were blessed with some gorgeous weather but play was slow and this always lowers the enjoyment factor. For most anyway. 64 ambitious players took to the fairways and, by the end, there was delight in the Netherlands! Again! Names headed for the Honours Board , and by convincing margins, were;

1st 39 Ria Van Wershoven (cut 1.8 to 10.8)
2nd35 Karen O’Connor (cut 0.6 to 16.7)
3rd 35 Pauline Hilliard (on handicap & cut 0-8 to 23.8)

1st 37 Cees Lagerwerf (cut 1.2 to 12.8)
2nd 32 Dean Moore
3rd 31 Richard Hinds
The trophies will be presented at the Captains’ Farewell Dinner following the Turkey Trot on December 5th.

November Newsletter
Karen O’Connor
November Newsletter
Cees Lagerwerf
November Newsletter
Richard Hinds

AM.AM.AM. Europa. Sunday. 15th.

For the third competition in a row, and for different reasons, this editor was involved in a pre-tournament kerfuffle which, on this occasion, looked like ending in a return home. A forlorn figure sitting on the boot of his car and contemplating a deserted car park! Then, to the rescue, and to his considerable relief, came Ursula Wetzel, a team member for the day, to scoop him up and speed back to our delayed playing partners. A first acquaintance with Darius Janiszewski, and neither Paul Roebuck or I could honestly remember whether we had met before. Both very interesting characters, from different worlds but, like so many members, familiar with life in other parts of the world. Especially Darius whose job with Airbus takes him everywhere. Anyway, to the golf. Under the experienced and competitive captaincy of Ursula, and despite a little wobble in the middle, we gelled quite well and, a rarity, Lilian opened the door for me, to be greeted with another bottle of wine! For fourth place though!

1st 101 Ron Chesterton, Lotta Syversen, Joanna Janiszewski, Cees Lagerwerf (on handicap)
2nd 101 Libby Robinson, Bobo Syversen, Thomas Widegren, Sylvia Robbins
3rd 98 Gordon Edwards, George Kirk, Carol Rees, Arthur O’Connor

November Newsletter
November Newsletter
November Newsletter

Medal. Asia. Tuesday. 17th.

This was the first of the new series. The weather was kind but, surprise, surprise, no buggies were allowed on the course. Not even at right angles. This was because of the work going on by the green staff in getting things ready for the forthcoming pro event here, the Alps Tour. In addition the speed of the greens had already been increased. All of which may explain why the number of No Return’s was so high. More or less 50% each both Men and Ladies. Those who stuck to their guns and finished with decent scores were;

1st 77 Connie Maphar-Massar
2nd 80 Jenny Chesterton
3rd 81 Karen O’Connor

November Newsletter
November Newsletter

1st 75 Chris Slattery (cut 0.1 to 4.2)
2nd 76 Paul O’Callaghan (cut 0.3 to 17.0)
3rd 77 Bobo Syversen

November Newsletter
November Newsletter

There were no upward changes of handicap so it must have been tough going. Even so the drop out rate is surprising. A minimal handicap adjustment is no significant punishment and is applicable anyway. Slowness of play might be a factor, as in consideration for others? Depression can wear down some but once was when not completing a medal would have been frowned upon? Unless for injury or physical limitation.

Ladies Senior Liga. Away. Wednesday 18th

Earlier in the month, on the 9th to be precise, Lotta Syversen & Pauline Hilliard, Carol Rees & Karen O’Connor, Ritva Hagglund and Anne Mills, were our pairings in a match which ended in an emphatic 3-0 victory. For the return, played on America, Lily Lagerwerf replaced Anne Mills. Something went wrong with the works though, home advantage again proving the deciding factor, by a similar score, thus leading to a halved match The report contains no reference to social activity before or after, although there is photographic evidence to show there was some. No recent reference to wine indulgence is noted but the “selfie” suggests our representatives were not exactly on the wagon.

November Newsletter
Sunlit selfie
November Newsletter
Shady ladies

National day of the hedgehog. Saturday 21st

This is a little known UK day drawing attention to the threatened demise of our prickly favourite. Hoglets are not arriving in sufficient numbers so the population has diminished by 95% in recent years. Whilst not often seen on golf courses during play it is well to remember that they serve a very useful purpose in the natural scheme of things. Why not buy your grandchildren a hoglet for Christmas?

November Newsletter
Homeless Hoglets

Three little piggies. America. Sunday 22nd.

Another format from the seemingly bottomless Hilliard basket of such “different” competitions. Teams of four. Full individual handicaps. All scores to count BUT at the end you deduct the three worst on your card. Carol Rees, a lovely, amiable playing companion, who knows all about such things, led our team and kept all the scores on the one card. To her further credit she only registered one Little Piggy whereas the rest of us built up drifts, droves or litters, take your pick. Pigs are omnivores, highly social and intelligent creatures, as were my playing partners, who deserved better than to be squeezed out of a prize on handicap.

November Newsletter

1st. 115 Alan Jewett, Connor Jewett, Doreen Gray
2nd 114 Jill Davies, Bobo Syversen, Pauline Hilliard
3rd 114 Derek Steel, Liisa Lindstrom, Wendy Hinds, Iain Macaulay
4th 112 Roy Davies, Jenny Chesterton, Paul O’Callaghan
(On handicap. The swine!!)

Stableford. Europa. Tuesday 24th.

A host of male “Seniors” were missing today, being off to La Canada for the final meeting of the season and, hopefully, collection of the trophy – but of that more anon. Sunday’s chill factor was missing, thank goodness, the sun shone, sweaters were discarded gradually, and although the wind got up a bit the conditions overall were pleasant. Weather-wise that is. For reasons which cannot be “advertised” here there were a number of distractions on the course, to the extent that at least one group of irate ladies gave up, came in early, and vented their feelings in the appropriate quarter. Actual playing conditions have been better.

Out of it all emerged some different names for a welcome change:

1st 36 Liisa Lindstrom (cut 0.8 to 22.0)
2nd 34 Paula Lansdowne
3rd 33 Carol Rees

1st 35 Heimo Kupsu (cut 0.4 to 18.9)
2nd 33 Asjborn Wangerud
3rd 32 John Brooks

November Newsletter
Liisa Lindstrom
November Newsletter
John Brooks

We are the champions!

Not Freddie Mercury and Queen but Bobo and our Seniors, male variety. For the first time the Liga has been won, the announcement officially made at a gathering of more than 120 golfers from the various participating clubs. Held on the 24th., at La Canada GC. This was more of a social occasion but not without golf. Indeed “Pierre Le Bleu” Penney came third in the individual Category Two, whilst Brendan Walsh was also close to the top in Category One.

November Newsletter
“Pierre Le Bleu” Penney
November Newsletter
Brendan Walsh

David Lansdowne and Mike Fisher came away with Nearest the Pin prizes. So, a good day for La Cala. Bobo was presented with the trophy and a photograph of him with his stalwarts was later taken. Unfortunately(!)it is not one of which David Bailey would be proud, or even Les Wicks, but is included to complete the story. We used 22 different players during the campaign, the 3-0 win at Alhaurin being the highlight of our results. Apart from Bobo, the prime organiser, and leader, Roy Davies, David Evans and Richard Hinds all served as captains at different times. Bobo has decided to go out on a high note and will now hand over the reins to Richard Hinds for next season. He will be a hard act to follow but not beyond a man with claret and blue blood in his veins. More details of this special day appear to have been lost in the haze of red wine mist still hovering over the proceedings. Indeed at least one player is still trying to find out whether he had a good time or not.

November Newsletter
David Lansdowne
November Newsletter
Mike Fisher


November Newsletter
November Newsletter

Millenium Year re-visited

It seems only five minutes since the year 2000 dominated the media and most people were planning special, and often extravagant, year end celebrations. La Cala members will have passed this statue and plaque every time they leave the buggy park but how many know the story behind it? For the benefit and possible interest of the newer members it can be told that the bronze boar was purchased in England and shipped here. La Cala organised the ceramic tiles for the plaque and they came from Seville.
Its original position was near the pro shop but it went into storage whilst the alterations were underway and was then allocated a new and more prominent site. Buried beneath the plaque is a metal box containing items such as photos of members, staff and waiters; the calendar of golf events 2000; menu and bar prices; coins and paper money; markers and tees bearing La Cala logos; list of golf fees and a copy of SUR in English.
Richard Barker and Sue Young were the Club Captains in that memorable year and it is to them that we are indebted for this thoughtful recognition both of the Millenium and their year of office.

November Newsletter

Ladies Social Day. America. Thursday 26th

One is not being ungentlemanly by reporting that this was an extra special gathering linked to Carol Ree’s 60th., birthday and, by the sound of it, a great time was had by all! Carol increased her popularity, if such were possible, by contributing gifts for everyone and wine for most! No less than 35 ladies supported an event which has become an important monthly date in the social calendar.

The format for the day was the old fashioned Texas Scramble, now superceded in some quarters by rare variations, and the ultimate winners were:

1st 61.4 Pauline Hilliard, Helena Widegren, Val Wicks, Jill Davis
2nd 64.1 Sonya Foster, Pearl Fisher, Mary Evans, Susan Young
3rd 64.4 Vivienne Youngs, Connie Maphar, Val Penney, Lilly Lagerwerf


November Newsletter
November Newsletter
Runners up
November Newsletter
Third place


Unusually no less than five ladies managed to win prizes for Nearest the Pin? Perhaps it was Pins? They were Veronique Hesen, Penelope Sherriff, Connie Maphar, Alsion Kirk and Lilly Lagerwerf.
Refreshingly, from an editorial viewpoint, a camera was to hand and the ladies were in their finery, happy of spirit. It is a pleasure to provide them with a little bit of extra space this issue.

November Newsletter

Individual Competitions 2016

Another reminder that the closing date for entries is December 31st and this will be the last Newsletter before then. Entry sheets are up in the clubhouse but if you are not likely to be here before closing date, but want to play, please contact Vic or Pauline Hilliard at

Change of December Dates 2015

Most will have had an email from Secretary Jenny Chesterton on this subject but this is just to repeat that the Stableford competition listed for Tuesday December 8th., will now be played on the Monday, the 7th. The following weekend also sees a change in that we will do friendly battle on Sunday 13th., and not the Saturday, 12th., as advertised originally.

The traditional Turkey Trot

Whilst in repetitive mode please note, if you haven’t already, that this competition takes place on December 5th., and will be followed that evening by the Captains’ Farewell dinner and main prize giving. Not to be missed if you can help it.

Action in November

November Newsletter

Homographs and heteronyms

Not every day words in the English language, and seldom used in conversation. If, being honest, you have no idea what they are or mean you should seek out a copy of an email doing the circuit recently. Basically it was proving the point that the English language is a difficult one, and gave many illustrations of why. Homographs are words of like spelling but with more than one meaning. A homograph that is also pronounced differently is a heteronym. Copies can be obtained from the Erling Johnsen Library of Jokes, Pictures, and other ancient matters. Or from Alan Jewett who thought this particular message “too good to pass up”.

A Crombie correction

Apologies are due to John Crombie who, with the considerable aid of his wife Lilian, won the Millenium Trophy last month. It was reported, based on his own rather emotional outpouring at the prize giving, that this was the first trophy they had ever won together. Not true it seems. John, or Mr.Modesty as he is known to some, but more than a few, has been at some pains to advise of any number of prizes won over the years, not just at his own club back home, but in counties far and wide. The Newsletter is pleased to put things right.

Thanksgiving day. Thursday 26th

Those fortunate enough to play their golf here at La Cala, and/or live here, will know that every day deserves thanks of some kind. Our own Table Mountain with ever changing crowns of cloud. The tinkling of the goat herd’s bells. Three courses with different characteristics. The feeling of space and freedom. Friends of many tongues but one binding interest. Competition which is seldom too serious. Social gatherings which bring us even closer together. Long may it all continue and, meanwhile, Thanks.

Bramble with a twist. America. Sunday 19th

Denied the pleasure of personal participation by physical indisposition, I could but watch from the sun swept balcony as fellow members tried to get the better of the 16th. Which few managed. It was a lovely day for playing golf too. As some proved more than others.

1st. 140 Jill Davies, David Moody, Les Wicks, Jill Hornsby
2nd 136 Wendy Hinds, Pearl Fisher, Jan Debrauwer, Siggy Bjarnason
3rd 133 Ron Chesterton, Judi Lenterlink, Ursula Wetzel, Arthur O’Connor

November Newsletter
November Newsletter
November Newsletter

No less than 17 people got two’s which reduced their reward, appropriately, to two balls each. In stark contrast to last Tuesday when there were only two winners who got sixteen balls each!!
Clubhouse attention during and after prize giving centred on Arthur O’Connor, AKA “Skinhead” following recent tonsorial treatment. Just as well he has a good sense of humour!

Bits and pieces

Wiz Khalifa’s hit song “Roll Up” deals with his search for drugs and women. “Red” O’Connor’s version is more down to earth, literally, and has no relationship to market trading, either in financial worlds or barrow boy land. This man of many shorts has become the hub of male Thursday golf, look you. The organiser of an informal but hotly contested competition, such as is popular in most English clubs but no longer really qualifies for the “Roll up” description here. You need to be on the list. Miss a week and you go to the bottom of it. This month, on the 26th., there were 36 players taking part in a “Multiplication Bramble+” which was won by Alan Jewett’s team embracing Roy Davies, Danny Rees and Brendan Walsh. Doubtless due to their superior numeracy, plus being what might be described as competitive players, they chalked up no less than 406 points!! A winning margin of 108 over the runner-ups. This being a family read no mention will be made of the prizes earned, an appropriate word, nor of the early Christmas party which followed………………………….David Moody, he of kaleidoscopic attire, set new standards with an outfit of a hue which led someone to describe him as looking rather like a bottle of ribena, or a grape!…………….The Ladies Senior Liga is a betterball matchplay competition for which no results for the season are yet known? This would seem to reflect somewhat on the central administration (not ours) but, come December 1st., all will be revealed when competing clubs get together at Anoreta for a showdown, following which, the newsletter has been promised, a full report will be available – with illustrations………..The 27th., was Black Friday and brought back memories of the Stock Market crashes, pension fund collapses, and revelation of serious banking disorders. In America, at least, it is seen as the day on which Christmas shopping “officially” starts, a habit not slow to spread everywhere. 40% of this. 50% off that. Has the smell of a new Bramble? For Lilian and I though it was the opposite of black because we over-nighted in Malaga to see the turning on of the Christmas lights which, as ever, were great. There was a party like atmosphere in the City, our restaurant was bubbling, all very enjoyable, if nothing to do with golf!……..

November Newsletter

Seniors Liga 2016

Five minutes into the job and already Richard Hinds is getting organised. The following is an un-edited message from the new Captain.

“Firstly, I would like to congratulate Bobo and his assistants, David Evans and Roy Davies on winning La Liga this year.

As Bobo will be busy in his Club Vice Captains role next year I will take on the Seniors Captain role for the 2016 season.

The rationale used in the Seniors has always been to try to give as many people as possible a game taking into account availability and ability to play (i.e. some courses do not have buggies).  This year 23 players have played in the games against 9 other clubs. Next year there will be total of 12 teams in the Liga providing more opportunities to play.

When next year’s monthly schedule of games is published I would like to distribute it to all players interested in participating. If you would like to receive a copy and therefore register your interest in playing, please send me your name and e-mail to a new e-mail address created specifically for the Seniors activity:

To participate, players have to be 55 or over and Spanish Federated.

Whilst trying to accommodate all players that may wish to play, preference is always given to those that can play both legs of the match. The cost for both games has been €58 which includes game, buggy, meal and tip.
If, for some unseen reason, a player is not able to play both legs the charges will be 40€ for the away game and 18€ for home.

Therefore, if you wish to play next year please contact me on the above e-mail. I look forward to hearing from you.”


Rafael Linares, Head Greenkeeper at La Cala Resort, nominated for the ‘Greenkeeper 2015 Award’

Rafael Linares, technical manager of the three golf courses and football grounds at La Cala Resort in Mijas, has been nominated for the ‘Greenkeeper 2015 Award’. This award is presented by the Spanish Association of Greenkeepers (AEdG), in recognition of his work as head of maintenance of the natural grass facilities comprising three golf courses, a practice facility & academy as well as a football field. This nomination recognizes his value on a national level as well as the significance placed on the high quality sporting facilities that are available at the La Cala Resort on the Costa del Sol.

The Delegation of Central Andalucía has endorsed his candidacy based on the great work carried out in the hotel and leisure complex. Other professionals from within the Province of Andalucía have assessed the “improvements realized after two years” on the three golf courses, the Academy and the football field, which are all available within the resort complex.

The association members were unanimous in stressing that “the improvements that have been carried out have been obvious and significant”.
On a personal level, they have highlighted “the high degree of preparation and enthusiasm” shown by Linares and his “responsibility”, which clearly shows that he is “a serious and hardworking person.” Not to be forgotten is “the great green keeping team” that Linares can rely on.

For La Cala Resort, the nomination of their Head Greenkeeper is great news because it endorses La Cala Resort’s confidence placed in a professional such as Linares, and places its golf facilities among the best in Spain.

November Newsletter

Early Christmas Greetings

This will be the last newsletter of 2015 and thus the last opportunity to thank Jose and David in the website department for all their considerable help during my first year of Editorship. They have been patient and helpful, creative and instructive. Thank you both. Muchas gracias.

November Newsletter

It is also the chance to seasonally greet our international membership so here goes:

Happy Christmas
Vrolijk Kerstfeest
Joyeux Noel
Frohe Weinachten
Prejellie vam Vesele Kandle
Glaedelig Jul
Hyvaa Johlua
Prettig Kerstfeest
Gleoileg Jol
Nollaig Shona Dhuit
God Jul
Wesolych Swiat
Blithe Yule
Feliz Navidad
Schon Weihnachte
Nadolig Llawen
Muve neKisimust

November Newsletter

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