Meadows Open 2018

14-15 July 2018, Meadows

Neither the World Cup nor the Wimbledon finals stopped the Meadows AC Open from having a full entry list, with 13 competitors taking part. The boundary lines had been freshly painted by Jola and Jamieson and the lawns were in good shape thanks to the efforts or Danny the gardener, and George Plant and the Green Team. The sprinkler system had been in use over the gloriously dry and sunny summer meaning that the lawns, although not slow, did not rival the dusty brown ice-rink pace of Balgreen. A little light drizzle on the Friday also helped ease the ground a little, making hoop moving easier.

There was a sizeable spread of handicaps: three entrants had a handicap of 3 or less, five were between 4 and 6, and five were between 7 and 9. But with a number of those handicaps appearing transitory, there was potential for many ties to go against form.

The first round was seeded, with the six top ranked entrants (bar the late-starting James) being kept separate. The biggest upset, on paper, came with Rosemary beating Barry Keen, our sole visitor from furth of Scotland and the RoT for the weekend.

As the day progressed, helicopters circled ahead following the anti-Trump demonstrations, and the warm sun beat down adding pace to the lawns. There were a number of close ties. Chris bettered Rosemary 22-18, Brian saw off Lorna 21-19, and David ground down Joe 16-14. At the end of Saturday, two players remained undefeated with four wins - James and Chris - while three players sat on two out of three wins - Bill, Bob, and Brian (surely a folk trio in the making there, for the name alone?)

Sunday morning saw James defeating Bob then Brian, and Chris overcoming Brian then Bob. (In his match with Brian, Chris had his cleanest victory to date, taking his first ball to 4b on turn 5, second ball to peg on turn 7 with one peel, and finished on turn 9).

These results set up the deciding tie of the weekend between James and Chris. After James uncharacteristically missed a tiddler of a roquet on the east boundary, Chris got the first break. Never really under control, he struggled round to 2b, crept through the hoop but missed reception ball on the boundary with a hampered roquet attempt. This let in James who went on to complete the last of his six triple peels of the weekend and take the Muffin Dish.

For some, triple peels are close to routine. For others, achieving the first is the Holy Grail. Special mention must be made of the tie between Alistair Malcolm and Lorna. After taking his first ball to 4b and setting a leave that was missed by Lorna, Alistair set off in his quest to complete his very first competitive triple. Peeling 4b after hoop 5, he then managed to make the penult peel after 2b. After he had successful navigated a straight rover peel, the triple was very much on. He used a short cut-rush to bombard his ball to the west of rover, but was only partially successful. With fears of committing a grievous, or crashing into rover, he rushed partner ball a spine-tingling 9 feet west of peg and missed the peg out attempt by the width of a cigarette paper. The Grail still awaits!

Finally, special thanks to Harriet Macandrew for providing the tea on the Sunday, and for the varied ranks of spectators over the weekend who provided good company and generous oenological fortification. And who knows, perhaps two of the youngest spectators, Harry Martin (2) and AC Hopgood (0) might end up competing for the Muffin Dish and Biscuit Plate one day.

Chris Martin, Manager


  Games Wins Win % Beat
James Hopgood 8 8 100% Roger Binks +25tp, Barry Keen +24tp, Alistair Malcolm +26tp, David Houston +15, Bob Darling +25tp, Brian Durward +20tp, Chris Martin +18tp, Lorna Dewar +13
Chris Martin 8 7 88% Joe Lennon +23, Rosemary Saunders Robertson +4t (22-18), Barry Keen +25, Roger Binks +22, Brian Durward +26, Bob Darling +24, Alan Wilson +16
David Houston 5 3 60% Joe Lennon +2t (16-14), Barry Keen +1t (21-20), Roger Binks +12t (20-8)
Bob Darling 6 3 50% Brian Durward +3, Lorna Dewar +2t (19-17), Joe Lennon +21
Brian Durward 6 3 50% Lorna Dewar +2t (21-19), Alan Wilson +13, Rosemary Saunders Robertson +17
Rosemary Saunders Robertson 6 3 50% Barry Keen +22, Roger Binks +9t (18-9), Alistair Malcolm +3t (22-19)
Alan Wilson 6 3 50% Roger Binks +15, Rosemary Saunders Robertson +3t (19-16), Bill Strachan +7
Alistair Malcolm 5 2 40% Lorna Dewar +20, Alan Wilson +6
Bill Strachan 5 2 40% David Houston +2t (14-12), Bob Darling +8t (18-10)
Lorna Dewar 6 2 33% Bill Strachan +21t (24-3), Barry Keen +5
Roger Binks 7 2 29% Joe Lennon +23, Barry Keen +11t (23-12)
Barry Keen 8 2 25% Joe Lennon +20, Bill Strachan +8
Joe Lennon 6 1 17% Alistair Malcolm +1t (22-21)


The results are also on Croquet Scores.


James Hopgood receiving the Muffin Dish from manager Chris Martin

Chris Martin receiving the Biscuit Plate from club captain Lorna Dewar