Victorian Country Regional AC Championships 2017
This year Ballarat District Croquet Association hosted this prestigious annual competition between the 9 country regional associations from 10 - 12 April.
As well as being a very competitive event showcasing high quality croquet, it has a strong social context with a welcoming BBQ and a formal dinner to mark the occasion.
MacRobertson Shield players leave for Los Angeles
Today the eight-person team representing Australia in the MacRobertson Shield are on their way to Los Angeles. Included in the team are Victoria's Stephen Forster (Belmont) and Robert and Malcolm Fletcher (Lismore).
They arrive on Thursday morning US time and are to go to Palm Desert where they will play against teams from England, New Zealand and the US in three five day tests.
News Date: 2017-04-09
Posted by: Kate Patrick
Posted on: 2017-04-22
News Type: Golf
Successful GC coaching sessions at Cairnlea
This year has seen a trial of open access coaching clinics for GC players at Cairnlea.
So far one weekend has been run for higher handicap players (9 to 12 - the Early Development Squad), and two for lower handicap players (0 to 6 - the State Development Squad). A second weekend for Early Development players will take place on 1/2 July.
Participants have been very positive about both programs.
Ruth Duffy attended the "State Development Squad" weekend in April.
I have been reflecting about the content of the weekend and what I gained as a player with a handicap of 6.
We were shown and participated in "deliberate practice", this means to plan one's practice sessions beforehand, and challenge oneself, to turn our weaknesses into strengths. To help improve our skills, so that when we play we play to enjoy the sport.
A great tip I took from the weekend was the 2Qs of practice which simply means quality and quantity of planned practice sessions.
Some helpful ideas:
- Video each shot so we can analyse each shot and record results, so improvements are documented, and weaknesses are clearly seen and can be corrected where needed so as to help build correct muscle memory.
- Use learning drills. It can be repetitive undertaking the same shot time and time again but once again it helps to document percentages of that shot for you, and shows up strengths and weaknesses.
- Practise real world drills which mix skills together as used during a game. For me this was a good way of practising, especially in groups where my competitive spirit took flight and made me push harder to achieve placement of the ball for the next person to achieve their hoop.
We did a number of drills, and I remembered my notebook so I was able to draw diagrams to practise now back in Corowa. I'm now reflecting on what I might do to design drills to meet club players' requirements.
Next we moved on to tactics using boundary lines to protect our ball. Looking at positioning of balls and if we should clear, place or run the hoop. We also worked on recognising the opponent's ball position - can it score? what percentage of success would it have using the 50:50 model?
We played doubles where we looked at communication between partners:
- no one spoke
- then one partner gave instruction to be followed and how that felt for the striker
- then interactive communication between partners, where the striker made the decision and the striker's partner backed them up with that decision unless it was a crazy idea.
This gave way to reflecting on what type of communication between partners is beneficial.
Finally there was some technical advice on a good routine for hitting the ball. Grip with hands together; the benefits of stalking the ball; have a balanced stance with weight on balls of feet rather than heels, feet facing forward; swing the mallet smoothly and straight. The effect of the height of the back swing on the distance the ball travels. All of these put together give us the benefit of a good routine.
Sadly this is where I had to leave the coaching weekend.
I strongly recommend that everyone attends these sessions, you won't regret it, I know I haven't.
Early win for Australia in Test One of the MacRobertson Shield
The Australian team reached a winning total on Day Four of the first test in the MacRobertson Shield, leading England 11:7 with one day's play to come, and finishing up with a win 12 matches to 9.
This is Australia's first Mac win against the Croquet Association side since they defeated Great Britain in 1986.
More great results from the Aussie Mac team
At the end of Day Four of the second test in the MacRobertson Shield, playing New Zealand, the Australian Mac team had again won 11 matches and the test - this time with six singles yet to play.
Honours were evenly divided on the last day of the test, with 3 matches all. The final result was a win to Australia, 14 matches to 7.