For weeks now – months even – there has been some odd behaviour around the club. Dark mutterings. Whispered conversations between only two people. Appraising stares across the lawns. Signals. Covered-mouth conferrings. Strangely recurring pairings in the morning draws for play.
Ominously, a revised list of handicaps was issued.
What tidings? Portents, undoubtedly, but of what?
Dear reader, it is the season of late frosts, warming days, the promise of a green flush in the lawns, buds a-buzzing and bees a-budding. It’s spring and that means the Doubles Championships.
|Not yet summer but (almost) all have switched to white trews and (almost) all have retained the winter top: it's the Spring Uniform.|
Those months of preparations came to their appointed fruition on Saturday, 22nd September. It is equally true, alas, that for some the preparations ended in abysmal failure but your scribe has enough on his plate without dwelling on the unhappier events in life.
We have noted in past years that Dubbo turns on a special sort of day for important events such as competitions and celebrations of the Dubbo City Croquet Club. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will just have to take their chances like everyone else. (They will be in town on a Wednesday which is not a regular play day, but a practice session is often held late afternoon. We have spare mallets and the green fee is modest.)
Our Games Captain – the dear man has such a lot to bear – had again meticulously prepared the programme and the first pairs were on the grass by 8:30.
Our lawns usually ring with laughter and comment, encouragement and bonhomie but the tone all day was of quiet intensity and concentration. Quite unnerving. There was a steady trickle of non-competing members dropping in during the day to watch.
By the end of the afternoon there were three pairs well ahead of the pack. Don and Pam Day were the winning combination, and second and third places were decided on nett games: Mavis Grant and Beth Stanley, Tom Barclay and novice player Tricia Shanks.
|Silver, Gold and Bronze medalists.|