Resetting hoops

Keeping our court in tip-top condition.

Summer Challenge

Playing in our club competitions has proved popular throughout June, to the extent that there are only a few games still to be played before the finalists in our three main competitions are revealed. So to satisfy competitive urges and to encourage play amongst members, we have a new informal league for July and August called the Caversham Summer Challenge.

In this league (well actually two leagues since GC and AC are counted separately), the player who plays the most games stands a very good chance of being top. This is because one league point is awarded for every match played against a new opponent. The only other way to get league points is to win your match (also one league point).

Who will play the most games? Who will be top of the league? Perhaps it will be you! We will know on 1st September and you can follow progress here.

Up to six players on the lawn

The CA has further revised its guidelines to allow a new maximum of six players on a full lawn at a time. This will allow for example a game of doubles to co-exist with a game of singles, either double-banking or using separate half lawns.

When booking this, two or four players should use the Firm booking AC or GC label. Two or four further members (to a maximum of six) may then book a parallel time slot, also using the Firm booking AC or GC label.

Maintenance work continues unabated

The lawn may be fully booked each day, but that doesn’t mean maintenance chores are neglected. Here is work in progress relocating topsoil, all done while respecting 2 metre social distancing of course.

Further relaxation of restrictions

The Croquet Association has revised its guidelines to allow a maximum of four players on a full court at a time. This means that from Wednesday 3 June we can play Doubles games and we can have double-banked Singles games. These changes apply equally to AC and GC.
In addition, as coaching of small groups up to five is allowed, we will start up AC and GC coaching sessions.
The latest rules for members wishing to play are downloadable below.

Lawn re-opens (13 May 2020)

With the easing of some Covid-19 restrictions today, we are pleased to be able to re-open the lawn to members. We have some new rules to abide by but as you can see from the photos, we can now play!

Covid-19 precautions (24 March 2020)

Your Committee takes the view that yesterday’s announcement by the Government effectively instructs us to close all Croquet Club activities. The relevant section from today’s guidelines from the MHCLG is reproduced below. Note the reference to ‘sports courts’ in public parks.

So, with immediate effect, we are closing the lawn and clubhouse, other than for essential lawncare and maintenance, until the Government instruction is relaxed or further clarified.

This decision is fully in line with today’s CA guidance that ‘all clubs must cease play for at least the next three weeks, but maintenance such as grass cutting can still continue provided that social distancing measures are implemented’.

We will review the position as further advice is received, but, until further notice, the lawn should be seen as off-limits for any form of play, including practice.

The Government is to look again at these measures in three weeks, to see if relaxation is possible.

The Committee trusts that you understand and will actively support our decision.

Please stay fit and healthy.

Brian Jamieson

Members’ day held in glorious sunshine

Congratulations to our 2019 club competition winners:

Walton Cup
Ann Hatchett and Peter Clee

GC Handicap
Mike Reddy

GC Level for high handicappers
John Walker

Winslow Cup
Chris Greaves

Golf croquet skills lead the way

On Saturday 22 June, the club organised a day for members to meet up and practice their golf croquet skills. Brian and Carol laid on a cunningly designed six-part “skills test”. With skills suitably enhanced, all 11 members who attended took part in one, two or three games. For added interest, we totalled the scores and named the overall best player : Liz Walker. Well done Liz, we hope you enjoy the winner’s box of chocs. Will runner-up John Walker be allowed to get his hands on these? The organisers’ reward was delivered by Katharine who commented “I have learnt so much from that, it was great!”.

Next event : short croquet on 6 July.

Croquet at Caversham Court

A team of willing volunteers from the club, led by Judy laid on a special fundraising competition at Caversham Court on Sunday 2 June. Many entrants were wielding a mallet for the first time but with a little expert tuition, even the youngest participant was running hoops like a pro. The afternoon culminated in a final played to a very high standard. As well as the photos below a short video of the event is available.

Armada Cup

The SCF Armada Cup for AC handicap doubles was held at Hamptworth on 1st June. Amongst the entrants, there were three Caversham players – Claire, John and Peter. Claire was partnered by Joe representing Blewbury, while John and Peter formed another partnership. At the end of the day, John and Peter came away with the trophy which you see them clasping in the photo above.

Match play

Club competitions and league matches are now well underway. At time of writing, Caversham has played four GC league fixtures – and has achieved four wins! We hope the AC team has such good fortune when their games start. Three of our intrepid AC players competed in the Wessex shield, sadly without bringing it home this year. And following contacts made at the GC national C-level tournament last year, we were delighted to be invited to play a friendly match on the magnificent lawns at Ealing. This was memorable in many ways, not least the fine lunch and the way Carol hit the peg to win the tie-break at the end of the day.

National Croquet Day 2019

We were pleased to give a little taste of croquet to families enjoying a sunny Sunday in the park. As you can see from these photos, croquet is a sport that crosses the generations.