- Neil White
Updated: Sep 11, 2020
The ball arched towards the fifth green - followed at frenetic pace by the head of my seven iron!
I mused that I have loved my 20-year-old Callaway Big Berthas rather too long as my go-to club literally fell apart.
At least it ascended to golfing heaven in style. A straight shot which ensured the green was hit in regulation on one of the best courses it has graced.
Thankfully, Alwoodley had many more memorable moments during our round in the club's mixed open.
The stunning view from the putting green which takes in the parallel sights of the 1st and 18th prompted keen anticipation and it fulfilled our hopes.
There are echoes of Woodhall Spa and Walton Health but the course has a very defined character of its own with some fascinating quirks and 18 holes which test thoroughly but also offer chances.
Indeed, I scored best on the hardest - the par-five eighth - according to a rather eccentric stroke index.
Actually, from the start, the index is baffling - the opening hole being an incredibly tough S.I. 14, followed by the much shorter second - an S.I. 6.
We realised that we shouldn't be too disappointed with bogeys because point-scoring opportunities came when the card promised least.
My favourite holes were the 10th - a dogleg which rises from the tea and then drops into the green from its right angle, the 17th - the first time I have teed off over a public road whose Tarmac and verges are out of bounds - and the 18th - a truly beautiful hole with a backdrop of one of the most handsome clubhouses I have seen.
Every fairway was lush and I found the greens - although pacey - easier to read than my previous experience of a McKenzie course at Hadley Wood where swirls and multi-layers are the order of the day.
I should also make mention of the welcome at Alwoodley, both in the professional's shop and by the starter. It really was special.
Indeed, the whole experience was superb - despite a third of the round being played in teeming rain.
Both Mrs W and I agree, we will be back.