Welcome to the November edition of your favourite organ
Last evening in my favourite meteorological contemplation spot at sunset on the 66 beach, we witnessed the very occasional flight departing – to the west. Yes, the winds were from the NW which heralds the arrival of the monsoons. Already thunderstorms are gathering late afternoon, so any day now we will get welcome, refreshing rains and the world will look better again. More importantly, our home NK course should play a bit easier for the shorter hitters on most of the longer holes (like 16, 17,18, 3,7) and as the majority of rains tend to be in the evening, we should relish the conditions.
What a great month of events we have just had! Apart from the usual Monthly Medal and our regular thrice weekly Stableford events, October saw two excellent Board initiatives come to a conclusion or nearly so – the Teams-of-Four ended, and the inaugural Raffles Matchplay Championship concluded the Semi finals.
Although attendance at regular events is of course reduced by you-know-what, we are still getting a healthy (pardon the pun) turnout, these new initiatives are encouraging our Bali resident members – and importantly, guests – to play every week, and it has been a resounding success. NKGC stepped up to offer great rates as an incentive, and the response has been fantastic. Results later in this issue…
Just for something a bit different, I thought we would try a new subject – Favourite and/or Unusual Golf Courses Around the World. What courses you have played are on your list and why? I am sure some of you Dear Readers have some thoughts to share with us all. I will start it off with a couple in this Edition, but hope you will share your thoughts with me, which we will publish. Send me your contribution at email@example.com
Dear Fellow Members,
This month I am updating you with respect to the situation regarding our Club’s name, Raffles Golf Club. As you all are aware we are an Australian registered club that is very active in Bali. You may recall that in a previous monthly note I mentioned that we are in dispute with Raffles International which is the prestigious group of hotels. They have acquired the trademark rights to the name RAFFLES in Indonesia for leisure. It is their contention that this trademark catches our name of Raffles.
The matter, at least from our point of view, has become quite complicated. We are an Australian Club but use the name Raffles in conjunction with our activities in Bali. We also have registered the ownership of the www.rafflesgolfclub.com through our Australian entity. No matter that it is registered in Australia, Raffles International are maintaining that we mustn’t use the name Raffles in Bali. Our Board has met twice on this matter in the past several weeks including a long meeting last Monday.
We are endeavouring to settle the matter amicably with Raffles International. I will keep you posted as to the results of those negotiations. Matters should now be resolved within the next month.
Cheers and yours in Golf
Raffles Golf Club
Membership of our great club costs each of us the princely sum of… $50. For that King’s Ransom, we all enjoy (amongst many other benefits) a vibrant competitive golf “experience”, access to huge discounts to play at our home course New Kuta, as well as greatly reduced rates at all other courses in Bali. With that tiny fee, and 20% of the Comp fees each game, we are able to meet most of the costs of running Raffles – but not all. To meet any shortfall, we rely on Sponsorship.
So I thought, I would use my column in this month’s Rag to talk about sponsorship in general and the impact on one of the important jobs of the golf club captain, the event schedule for the following year. Thomas Paine gives me hope as the document in which he used the term ’necessary evil’ was entitled ‘Common Sense’.
Like most non for profit organisations Raffles relies on sponsorship for events, especially major events. For Raffles any type of sponsorship is welcomed and necessary, whether it be an in-kind donation, a trophy/prize or a cash donation. Sponsorship tends to bring life to an event not only for our members but for the sponsors, where it gives them profile.
For our club, membership fees fund the administration, with most fees directed to the handicap system, affiliations with necessary golf associations and a small remuneration for the administrator.
Our Comp fees pay for event prizes, caddies to support using Golf Genius, our administration, and at present (Covid inspired) support for the opening of the driving range on Raffles days.
So you can see that sponsorship supports all the other activities the club supports. There are always comments about the cost of running a special event, like our golf tournament, though I do think most members understand there is a cost involved to run such an event. This year our members stepped up with the Caddie Support Fund, giving generously; we could not have done this without member sponsorship. Our Member’s Trophy Days, where a member provides an extra prize, have been warmly received and many of our Bali based sponsors have continued to support us, when possible.
In our planning for next year we are planing a covid event schedule as we don’t expect borders (especially Australia’s) to be open before a vaccine is available. The world situation and our situation in Bali is not overly attractive to sponsorship and hence has an impact on the events we offer.
You will see with the release of our 2021 schedule in the next few weeks we still offer a full golfing program for our members, though with less major events and more local events, responding to the situation of the world in which we live. Our plans are to be flexible with the schedule so that we can respond to border openings and international travel.
Like all non for profit organisations are experiencing in a time of global pandemic, we hope that when our international members return, so too will our major sponsors.
Raffles Golf Club
Favourite and/or Unusual Golf Courses
During the mid-70’s I took a bus from London to Kathmandu. (Actually I thought it was going to Hemel Hempstead, but by the time we passed through the Turkish border into Iran, I felt something was amiss).
We eventually, some six weeks later, arrived in Kathmandu after countless adventures, all hilarious in retrospect but usually harrowing at the time. I and three fellow intrepids, decided it would be an excellent time for a round of golf and headed for the Royal Nepal Golf Club.
RNGC is (or was as the case may be) set on some pretty flat land on the outskirts of the city adjacent to the airport. The clubhouse was redolent of its Colonial past, and still in good nick. From the verandah one had a great view of the dusty brown fairways, and the distant “browns” were pointed out. Yes, greens were honestly described, and were made of sand, doused with diesel fuel or some such.
The day was…memorable. Being late summer, the parched fairways were often cut by equally dry gulches, requiring frequent “lay ups” or a brave attempt to clear them. If you failed and the ball rolled into the ravine, invariably there were tiny huts at the base where villagers lived until the next rainstorm washed them out. There was never a ball in sight amongst their huts, oddly enough.
Our entourage was quite impressive. Each player had a caddie, a forecaddie who stood on your line to an invisible flag, (then ducked if you managed to hit it where he was indicating), and a “brown Caddie” who wore a long cape like Princess Di’s bridal train made out of hessian, and whose job it was to run all over the Brown before you putted, to smooth out any blemishes of the group or a passing buffalo. So 16 of us set out from the tee!
Not exactly “closely mown”… even now.
By far the most impressive part – like so many golf courses – was the view. To our north and naturally in sight from every metre of the course, the whole sky was dominated by the awesome Himalayas. They were still probably 100kms away, but occupied more than half of the northern sky.
How did we play? Who knows. But our day at the Royal Nepal Golf Club some 40-odd years ago remains with me still.
(Surely you all have a favourite or just plain quirky course somewhere in the world. Write me something about it and we can share it with others. firstname.lastname@example.org)
October Monthly Medal
The October Monthly Medal was also the qualifying round for the Inaugural Raffles Matchplay Championship, and a good field of 31 players contested the event.
Eventual winner was Mr Fireballs himself, Trevor Kuzio with a fine nett 67 off his 18 handicap. Trevor was comfortably ahead of second place getter and in-form Rhonda Golsby-Smith, who played consistently to record a nice 70 from her 26 handicap. Close behind in third place was Thomas Linane, carding a 71 from 27 handicap.
Our Best Gross of the day went to Tony (Moose) Colley, who again avoided any 10s on his card, signing for an excellent 76.
Well done to our winners Trevor and Tony!!
Trevor after “be seen, be safe” course Tony demonstrates how it is done
Player of the Month
October’s Player of the Month was (if memory serves me) the first time it has been won by a woman! Rhonda Golsby Smith played very consistently throughout the month to take out the title, and by a considerable margin to boot. Her 84.8 Points easily saw off second place getter Malcolm Manson on 71 and Trevor Kuzio with 69.2.
Well done Rhonda!!
Member’s Trophy Day
October was the month for Hugh and Henny Brown to donate a trophy – and a desirable one it was with 5 bottles of Premium New Zealand wines up for grabs. Hugh and Henny decided on the more friendly Par format in a welcome departure from the usual Stableford for a change.
Thirstiest man on the course, obviously, was Malcolm Manson, who finished the day on +4, which was enough to quench the fires burning within oenophile Karl Heinz Schmelzer on +2. Third place was the in-form Fransisca Boedilistiati on +1, who beat, on a count back, none other than husband Alan Legg. Quiet night on one side of the dinner table that night perhaps…
Well done Malcolm!
Uluwatu Open Teams Competition
This initiative from our Board has been a huge success on several fronts – it attracted a large field courtesy of its innovative format over 4 weeks – brought a number of guests to Raffles – generated some much needed income for our caddies, – and encouraged NKGC to support further Raffles initiatives to attract fields.
Winners were the Black and Greys on 352 points. Their team consisted of Bapak Iwan, Gede Mahendra, Nyoman Susila and Wayan Mudipa.
There was daylight between them and second placed The Minerals, comprising Charlie Stephenson, Craig Steeples, Davis Campbell and Peter Manz, who held of Norfolk ’n Chance, the highly talented group of Tony Colley, Earl Gabriel, Gavin Walker and Robbie Goodwin
World Golf Rankings
Only in Bali… Covid warning on the buses? Or just a general warning…