Hor­ror start brushed off

Dowling re­cov­ers from nightmare shot at first tee

Isis Town and Country - - Sport - By BEN TURN­BULL

BLAKE Dowling went through ev­ery golfer’s nightmare on the way to his maiden Isis Golf Club Cham­pi­onship (A-grade).

With a com­fort­able lead, Dowling stood on the first tee to line up his shot. The 60-year-old hoop pines guided Dowling along the 176m path to the green but his shot went wide, very wide, and the pres­sure was now on.

Dowling said the first shot had him in trou­ble, but he re­cov­ered well enough to beat his older brother, Damien, and fa­ther, Clin­ton, to win his first ti­tle at his home club.

“I was quite a few shots in front and the first hole was nerve-rack­ing,” Dowling said.

“I hit it out of bounds on the first, and shot seven on the par three.

“The rest of the round I got one bo­gey and four birdies.”

Dowling’s re­cov­ery was im­pres­sive enough to win by 13 shots in a dom­i­nant per­for­mance.

Satur­day’s round was made harder by strong wind and driz­zling rain greet­ing the play­ers. On Sun­day the sky cleared and the wind died down to make it much more pleas­ant for the field.

He said there were now plans for more club ti­tles, and thanks to his good show­man­ship, Dowling added, he didn’t rub it in too much at home.

“It was ex­cel­lent win­ning my first club cham­pi­onship and hope­fully there are more to come,” Dowling said.

“There wasn’t too much brag­ging – well, maybe a lit­tle bit to­wards my brother and dad.”

The win­ners in the other grades in the Isis Golf Club Cham­pi­onships were: Mark McAu­lay, men’s C-grade; Michael Stan­ton, men’s B-grade win­ner; He­len Ric­cia­rdi, women’s A-grade win­ner; Ce­cily Fay, women’s B-grade.

PHOTO: CON­TRIB­UTED

CLUB CHAM­PI­ONS: (From left) Mark McAu­lay, Michael Stan­ton, Blake Dowling, He­len Ric­cia­rdi and Ce­cily Fay.

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