THERE’S a certain vicarious pleasure in playing a round of golf with a man who gets a hole in one.
It would be more pleasurable if it were me, of course, but the fact that a playing partner can do it means there is hope yet for my humble game. As a relative newcomer to golf, only since retirement, I still suffer from the hacker mentality which turns a good drive into a bad second shot or an easy putt into a horrible miss.
But even at my standard, there is always the one good shot that brings you back. And now that I have witnessed a hole in one, there is the added hope that I will one day savour that same feeling.
I have found that golf is not a game which invokes envy. There is still the element of competition in that you want to achieve the lowest score, but you are playing against yourself rather than directly against an opponent. Unlike tennis where the other person’s skill and agility is to blame for my loss, in golf it is not the other person’s fault when I slice my ball into the bush.
So it was with a sense of privilege rather than envy that I was standing behind Steve on the tee when we saw the ball roll gently into the cup on the 168-metre par 3 sixth at Marangaroo, a public course in Perth Australia more famous for its kangaroos than the standard of golf.
Congratulations Steve. My turn next week.
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