The Christmas golf programme, as usual, finishes with the Tom Noggi, a 4 Ball Better Ball match between teams Captained by the Professional and the General Manager and December 28th this year was no exception. The 2 Captains huddle together picking their sides and it has to be said that the General Manager has been the better selector having won the last 2 matches. 76 players volunteered for duty so it meant that there were 19 matches to be played in what turned out to be ideal conditions with none of the threatened rain, the only problem being that a lack of light could have played a part in the last few matches; thankfully the last game, which was halved on the last green, was clearly visible by one interested Member on the webcam!
After the first 8 matches it looked as if Nick Williams might at last win as his team was leading 6–2 at this stage with fine wins from Tony Rounsevell & Keith Willmott 4&3 and also Sam Jarvis & Kevin Cornford by the same margin. What followed then was just like the England cricket team - a middle order collapse with the next 7 games all going Tuck\'s way with strong victories for Kenton Williams & John Carhart (4&3) Geoff Jones and Ken Perring (4&3), John Arnold & Keith Hawke (4&2) and the biggest margin of the day 6&5 for Charles (back from Bunker Diving duties) Rayment & Robert Holden. The match now stood 9–6 to Tuck Clagett\'s team with 4 matches still out on the course.
The next match in saw Nick\'s team pick up a point with a fine 3&2 win for Roger Tremain and Russell Day who by all accounts played really well with 3 Birdies on the back 9, so it was now 9-7 with first to 10 to win the coveted trophy with 3 matches still on the course. The match decider came in the next game with the 2&1 win for Malcolm Knight and Kevin Parker for Tuck\'s team. Even though the overall match was decided the final 2 games both went to the last putts. So the final score was the General Manager\'s Team 10 ½ the Professional\'s Team 8 ½.
In a spirit of seasonal good will the reader will have noted that, to spare the blushes of those who lost their matches, no losers\' names have been attached to compound their shame, so a few people owe the Webmaster a drink then – cheers!. A great meal with the main course of Cumberland Sausage and Mash followed; the rumour that it was ethnically in honour of Mark Arrowsmith\'s match saving Birdie on the last are completely untrue. Then we came to the fines which Nick extracted for the Captain\'s Charity and thanks to his inventive mind helped by his ever faithful Enforcer “Little” Malcolm Knight reached an epic total as no one escaped contributing. The trophy presentation to Tuck then took place and in his winner\'s acceptance speech Tuck rather cruelly gave Nick a photo of Tom Noggi to put up in his shop so he does not forget what he looks like as it is so long since he had possession of him. This was in the true spirit of the day so roll on Tom Noggi 2014, it does not get any better than this!