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Sidmouth Earn Promotion at the First Attempt

Sidmouth Herald published 16 April 2015

The first competitive event in the South West Federation of Croquet Clubs was a Short Croquet tournament at Nailsea Croquet Club last Saturday, writes Dave Butler.

Sidmouth entered two teams, one of which won their division and gaining promotion.

Due to relegation last year both teams played in the Fourth Division along with teams from Abbey, Budleigh Salterton and Camerton and Peasedown.

The short croquet game is a 14-point Association game played on half-sized lawns. Both players have bisques and each game lasts 75 minutes.

One Sidmouth team comprised Barbara Clarke, Rob Matthews, Paul Griew and Richard Croft, all high-handicap players.

They struggled with the pace of the lawns, discovering them to be much faster than our Sidmouth lawns that they had practiced on the previous week.

As this was the first time for all the team members to play in this tournament they scored a creditable three points.

Richard Croft won two games and Paul Griew won one. The experience gained will be of benefit to them next year.

The second Sidmouth team called themselves Sidmouth Fortfield and comprised lower handicap players, three of whom had played in the tournament last year.

They drew on their experience and quickly adapted to the speed of the lawns and won 12 points to win the division and gain promotion back to Division Three.

Each team member contributed by winning some games. Ian Friedlander won twice, Julie Horsley and David Clarke each won three, and Philip Harris won four. This was very satisfying having being relegated last year.

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