2023 News & Events

Current News & Member Information

Topics Index:

* Dec – A five way tie for first place at Yering Meadows.
* NovRound 2 ESVGA Championship at Gardiners Run
* Oct – ESVGA versus VGCV Challenge
* Oct – Round 1 ESVGA Championship
* SeptVVGA Teams Championship win for ESVGA
* SeptWarburton bathed in Spring sunshine
* AugPositive comments for our new course, Rossdale.
* JulyA wet track at Gardiners Run in July
* JuneWinter? A Perfect June day at Keysborough
* MayWinter conditions at Waterford Valley in May
* April Head for the hills, Cardinia Beaconhills
* MarHealesville Stableford
* Feb – South to Berwick Montuna
* JanOur 2023 year starts at Eastwood
* JanESVGA 2022 Champions receive their trophies


Ron’s steps aside after 7 yrs & a farewell to Barry after 15 yrs.

Committee toasts Ron’s last meeting after a 7 year reign as President

Ron toasts Barry’s last meeting after a 15 year term on committee

A five way tie for first place at Yering Meadows

Combined report by incoming and outgoing Presidents – Game photos available shortly

From new President David Waters
A terrific day unfolded bright and sunny, a complete contrast to the previous week. The good conditions translated to many good scores. Of the 101 players 40% scored over 33. Around 15 doing 37 or better. The highlight was the five-way tie for first each scoring 40.

Tee settings shortening holes, did not prevent balls landing wet or sandy.

Starting Table L-R, Barry Smith, David Stevens, Ken Batrouney & Ron Hottes

Above – Players gather on the first tee for their 8am tee off. L-R Bill Berhardt, Tom Tarrant, David Waters, Jerome Wong, Nick, Madden, Graeme Fox and Ken Batrouney.

Although the round finished in four hours 30, presentation began slowly. A change from usual order of procedures was needed as the sandwiches came out in stages. Drink vouchers were greatly appreciated during the wait for tucker.

Raffles began while scores were collated and printed. Checking scores continued and so president opened the AGM. Ron Hottes presented his yearly report. Treasurer Ken Batrouney followed up with the finance report for the year. The committee was then spilled by Ron and Dave Rogers assumed the role of election controller. Nominees for positions were accepted unopposed.

David Waters closely watches his fairway shot, Hole 8.

Life member Tom Tarrant fairway shot, Hole 8.

Bill Bernhardt putting on the 18th.

The freshly elected president David Waters acknowledged the support and the surreptitious lobbying undertaken for that position.

Ron Hottes was inducted unanimously to honorary life membership of the ESVGA.

After the presentations were hijacked by “El Presidente” everyone was sent on the way.

Last words are a great big apology. SORRY. Forgot to wish you all,


David Waters.

Bill Bissau tees off on the 8th

Phil Macreadie on the 8th tee.

David Finn putting on the 14th green

Horst Eberius putting on the 14th

Ray Masters putting on the 14th green

Neil Muller tees off on the 15th

From out going President and new Life Member Ron Hottes

This will be my final game day report to you, It may be a little longer than usual because the newly-installed Prez has contributed to parts of this, ( just to get his hand in on one of the many tasks that he will be expected to complete! )

But, Gentlemen, what a lovely way to finish my “stint” —at very welcoming Yering.
Ok, so it wasn’t perfect! It appears some of the dry bunkers were in pretty ordinary condition. And, we do apologise for the “staggered” sandwich distribution! ( Not under our control!!) But, we were looked after in the Clubhouse in all other ways as usual. Plus the course was clearly welcoming to most of us.

Resting after golf with Sandwiches and drinks, L-R Danny Cappellani, Wal McDonald, Phil Macreadie, Bill Bernhardt and Neil Muller.

Newly elected Captain Sam Athens with the retiring presidents special raffle prize

And, talking about results, a 5-way finish with a 40-point result was sensational. With plenty of high scores recorded, ( over 50% in the 30’s and above), this meant that plenty of our loyal members went home with a voucher or a ball to remember the 2023 ESVGA Christmas breakup. Also, I received plenty of positive thankyous for the free drink gesture from your Committee!! From my perspective, it was a great pleasure to present the ESVGA Club-Championship trophies, and cash. ( If you’re reading this, Peter-Hopgood and Russell-Manning, your trophies/cash will be available to you at the Churchill game if you are playing there! If I still have them after that game-day, I think I’ll just put them on my shelf!!)

The 2023 AGM went smoothly, thanks to Neil Muller’s superb preparation!!It was disappointing that we had NO nomination from the floor for the vacant Secretary’s job! Neil will continue in his dual role for the foreseeable future, but I desperately wish to see a permanent Secretary elected ASAP! Other aspects of the AGM occurred smoothly.

Election Controller & Life Member Dave Rogers

Ken Batrouney presenting his Treasurer’s report at the AGM.

Newly elected President David Waters

Finally, it was pleasing to see such a large field, (100+) play on the day, and—-most of them stayed on for the AGM, the trophy-giving and, as always ,the superb camaraderie!! On that note, can I, from my family, wish ALL of our loyal members, a festive and SAFE Christmas and a happy New Year—with plenty of pars & birdies interspersed among your scores! And, I look forward to seeing most of you at Churchill-Park, on Jan. 8th!

Regards, An “ordinary” Committee member now!

Round 2 ESVGA Championship at Gardiners Run

” Well, our Club-Championships are now done and dusted! We have plenty of winners coming from the Open event, plus the Grade titles. But, let’s start with the daily comp. Undoubtedly, the course, at Gardiner’s-Run was in “tip-top condition”—-a far cry from our last game there in Winter.
It was a pleasure to play there, and clearly some of our members took great pleasure in beating the course on the day. In fact, a sure sign of this was that the ball rundown only reached Nett 75, whereas at our previous game,( @ Churchill), members collected balls even when their scores were in the Nett 80’s!!

As always, at G/Run, we were all looked after very well by the usual staff—Tas, Josh, Jarryd & Addy. And, I might add, the sangers were tasty, which included some unusual fillings!! As for the golf results, many of those were “tasty”, too!! Tony-Meeuwson’s Nett 67 was good enough to take home the top prize. Great result, Anthony! Russell-Manning was the R/up, on a countback, ( that won’t please the Flying- Ferrall), posting a Nett 68—-as did Peter-“Mr. Consistent” Hopgood . I might add, there were plenty of 69’s and scores in the low 70’s!! Good shooting by many of our members. Good shooting also by our 3 NTP winners, they being Wayne-Barlow, (C-Grade), Peter-Mastertoun, (b) and to Derek-Wilson, who played a lovely tee-shot to within a metre at the 16th, for the A-Grade prize—-and sunk his birdie putt!! All of us, except K.B. are really pleased to see you back with us, Derek!

Our ESVGA Captain Sam welcomes players to Gardiners Run

David Borg & Tony Moore watch Ian Young putt

David Borg tee shot to the Par 3 7th with Mt Dandenong in the background

Two new members Rama and Gopal on the tee

Barry Maltman looking pleased after a recovery shot over the trees.

Tex van der Kooi relaxes watching Barry Maltman, who made a recovery over tree’s

Now, Gentlemen, to the Championship winners. It is fairly obvious that Russell-Manning has won his 2nd Open Championship, with scores of 93 & 77 =170; a great effort because his first win was some years ago when he was just a new member! We had joint R/ups, they being David-Borg & Derek-Wilson, tying on 173!

Our Grade titleholders are as follows: Gents, due to a much-debated decision, that has since been referred to as The Ferrall -Rule, there are NO countbacks in the Grade events. (If there was a tie in the Open Championships, Russell and the tied member would have played off for the title at Yering—the next ESVGA gameday! ) Therefore, our TWO A-Grade winners are Ian-Young, (72 &75) & Peter-White, (75 &72), both on Nett 147 and both worthy winners—-as are Bruce-Ferrall, (80 & 71) plus Norm-Kearns, (77 & 74), finishing on Nett 151. But, in C-Grade, there was no such “tight finish”. Mr. Consistent, Peter-Hopgood, posted a 73 and a 68 to record easily, the best Nett score of any member, with a superb Nett total of 141. Genuine congratulations to all 6 winners. I guess I am purchasing 6 trophies this year, not the usual 4!!

Phil Pearson (right) and Barry Mitchell watching Jack Kerin (not in picture) teeing off on the 3rd hole.

Hunting for Jack Kerin’s ball on the 3rd

Alan D’Arcy approaching the 11th green while Kevin Moylan tries to escape the bunkers

David Borg putting from the fringe on first green watched by Tony Moore & Ian Young

Kevin Moylan plays from the bunker.

Tony Moore plays from the bunker adjacent the 9th green

And, as always, members, we look forward to our next get-together—at Yering, in December—the 4th, to be precise. It is our Christmas break-up game, where your Committee will “shout” you a drink, plus where our 2023 AGM will be held. ( You will receive the relevant paperwork on that in due course, from our superb, but retiring Secretary, Neil-Muller.)

Oh, yes, Gents, I nearly forgot—-WE NEED A NEW SECRETARY, please!

Also, at that game-day, trophy winners will be presented with their prizes from our Championships! And, a new raffle prize will be available to win, arranged by your retiring Prez! ( A voucher for 2 players and a cart to play at beautiful Warburton, somewhere in the next 12 months.)
So, why would you miss out on all that? If you haven’t already done so, book in ASAP, and we’ll see you there to share good times!! “

(Ron-H, President)

ESVGA versus VGCV Challenge

ESVGA versus VGCV Challenge October 9th. Photos of the event below, more details to follow.

L to R Alan Teather, George Weaver, David Shutler

L to R David Stevens, Kevin Wells, Reg Davey, Alan Emery

Bruce Bower gracefully plays his 2nd on the par 5 8th hole

Alan Emery from the sand on 17 ball skidding through the green

David Waters conducting the after game raffle

David Waters conducting the after game raffle

Game co-organiser David Waters conducting the after game raffle



Presidents VGCV Harold Hayes and ESVGA Ron Hottes

Round 1 ESVGA Championship

Well, the first round of the ESVGA Championships for 2023 is now “done & dusted.”
Churchill’s course was presented in great condition, although the greens were quick on some of them—-but fairly slow at other times. We had 88 front up to the starter, for an 8.30 am. tee-off. The weather was perfect, although a little windy at times. When we concluded our game we were well attended to by Assistant Pro, Ben, and his off-sider, Ethan.
As scores were being calculated, it was clear there would be no Nett 60-somethings!

What a bunch waiting for the 8.30 hit off.

John McAndrew getting out of trouble, watched by David Waters

Derek Wilson putting, good to see him back in action again.

At Presentation, after the usual Presidential housekeeping, the first step was to bring forward our VVGA State Champions—namely Colin-Eaton, Peter-Hopgood & Kevin-Moylan. These fine gentlemen will go down in ESVGA folklore, being the first team to “bring home the bacon”—-or more accurately, the State title. And, for good measure, Colin won individual honours with two fine 38’s next to his name. Well done, Colin, Peter and Kevin—you can now enjoy bragging rights, around ESVGA circles, for the next 12 months!!

Peter Hopgood, Kevin Moylan, Colin Eaton congratulated by Ron Hottes. First ever team to win at the VVGA Teams championship

Tex Van De Kooi putts while Gary Overton watches closely

Eivion Williams playing up the 9th fairway

And, so onto the gameday results. Being the first Round of the ESVGA Championships, it was a stroke round, so there were two comps running simultaneously.
Regarding the daily event, the following 3 players filled the dais, and the Herald/Sun results section the next day!! Peter-White came out on top with a fine Nett 72, followed by “Mr. Evergreen”, Peter-Hopgood, posting a Nett 73. He grabbed that spot, on a countback, from the F.F’s best mate—Jack-Huel, also with a 73! (Jack assures me that Bruce did NOT mark his card!!)
Without spending too much print-space on the Championship results, ( as it is, after all, a 2-Round event), suffice to report the following leadership details. The Open Championship is looking to be” a battle royal” between A-Graders Peter-White. Bruce-Bower, ( a past winner), David-Borg & Graeme-Fox—although that is a risky prediction, as a “smoky” can burst out of the pack at any time!!

Peter Webb finishes with 3 putt s on 14th

Robin Ladd makes his 2nd putt on the14th

Phil Guscott and Ray Cross after watching Peter Webb and Robin Ladd on the 14th green

The Grade comps are evenly poised to produce some tight results!
The A-Graders see only 5 Nett shots between 8 of them—so, it’s anyone’s title. In B-Grade, Wal-McDonald has a handy 2-stroke Nett “buffer” over, surprisingly, your wayward Prez!! ( How can that be, Gents?!? Well not getting into 1 bunker over the whole 18-hole journey certainly helped!!) But, as with all the Grades, a “smoky” can appear from nowhere. As is the case in C-Grade, where Mr. Consistent” Peter-Hopgood and Jack-Huel appear to have it all to themselves, but there is a chasing pack, upwards of 8, who could snatch the title from Peter and Jack. Good luck to all those in the running at beautiful Gardiner’s-Run on Oct. 30th!

One more point to mention, Gents. Our AGM is only 2 months away. With your Prez. AND V.P. ( G.B. Smith) both quietly slipping away, we need new blood to fill some vacancies. To be precise, we need a new Secretary, and one or two Ordinary committeemen. If you are interested in putting up your hand, contact Neil-Muller for the appropriate paperwork! ( As a point of order, we DO have a nomination for my position, from within the Committee, but you still may nominate for that role, should the desire take you there!!)

John McAndrew lines up for a close one

Dermot Magee lines up for a close one

So, Gents, it’s onwards and upwards, to Gardiner’s-Run, your President’s favourite “away venue”!
In the meantime, good shooting, members!!

President Ron Hottes

VVGA Teams Championship win for ESVGA


Sunday was a good day for a quiet cruise up the Hume. The drab, deserted sites were first encountered where the train loop construction began on the way to the flatlands at Craigieburn. Once out of Melbourne the excitement mounted as we looked forward to golfing with new and old friends, some beers, banter and a jolly good time.

We all arrived at different times. Five representatives at the same motel. One sharer was directed to the Colonial Motel, by his partner, not finding this, the tourist information reverse looked up the phone number.” Viola “it is revealed THE COMFORT MOTEL.

Everyone was happy, enjoyed a dismount and dropped off supplies and off to practice.

Greg Allen and David Waters played an unhindered 18 holes in about three hours. The course was quite busy and although Colin Eaton and Horst Eberius played 9 holes and Kevin Moylan about 7 we only caught up with Peter Hopgood having his practice.

Back at the ranch “the Comfort Motel” golfers from all places gathered. We all had a quiet drink and a scrub, chatted while organising ourselves for dinner back at the golf club.

Greg was the very responsible driver both nights, shown on profile driving. A very enjoyable meal and a few drinks evidence in photographs attached. Catering and bar staff looked after us very well. After a tiring day travelling, playing, eating and drinking it was early as we smashed into the sack. ZZZZZ.

Monday- Day one. Pictures of the arrival of Horst and Bev Eberius. Dinner at the Bowls club last night for those two love birds. A nervous wait for Kevin Moylan who no one had yet spotted despite practising and eating at the golf club. Liz was persuaded to be photographed with Kevin before driving off to see the sites around Benalla.

Team photos were taken, more coffees, plus a few more as we awaited instructions from the Marshall.

L-R Colin Eaton, Greg Allen, Horst Eberius, David Waters, Kevin Moylan & Peter Hopgood.

AWAY WE GO !!!!!!!!!

Kevin and Peter started off 6A and 6B. Colin and Horst 1A and 1B. Greg and David 2A and 2B.

We were all close together but hardly sighted during the round. A few photos at hit off and one or two during the round. All attached with captions.

The course was in great condition having dried out well after rain earlier in the month. To our surprise there was plenty of run, and the frequent worm burners from all competitors did little harm. The tree lined fairways caused problems, but straight hitters were rewarded. There were plenty of clunks and balls returning from angry trees all around the course but not too many lost balls as the rough was well cleared. All the greens were built on mounds. They were quite fast as evidenced by the discussions after the game. Subtle borrow as the speed died, provided many sad tales of loop outs. Pitches and chips stopped dead at the green’s edge. Putting from the surrounds proved the best approach as even gentle chips on, run through and down the mound.

Picture Horst just off fairway 15 and Colin ready to putt a long one, finishing just short.

The lunch pack with water and a freshly prepared chicken wrap was very tasty and kept all players in good shape. Everyone proved golfers are multi taskers as we unwrapped, ate and walked while concentrating on where our ball was. Tell that to your wives, see where it gets you.

Day one resulted with Kevin Moylan 34, Peter Hopgood 34 and Colin Eaton 38 for a team total of 107 points. That was good enough to be in third position.

Our other team of Greg Allen 32, Horst Eberius 27 and David Waters 35 with a total of 92 points just ranked in the middle of the field.

A quick drink and back to the ranch for a scrub. Club land beckoned for a Bistro dinner. Not all blokes thankfully. Bev and Liz came to control us. The pictures tell the story. They were appreciated but clearly couldn’t hold six reigns. Other groups also had similar problems. We were one of the last to leave, DW was dragged away from the talk fest. We were all happy. Bed Beckoned and soon ZZZZZ’s were erupting.

Tuesday – Day two. Everyone knew the routine. Coffee, goodbyes and good luck from spouses as the head off to Benalla surrounds. No fire and brimstone motivation speech, just do what you can. A minute’s silence for a VVGA life member recently deceased. Marshall wished us good luck and set us off.

AWAY WE GO AGAIN ho hum. Same tees, same groups.

Not many pics today. A bit warmer. Sleeves on and sunscreen.

David Waters brings out a brand-new Callaway, declaring if it doesn’t work, I’ll return to my used Titleist.  Clean hit, through trees 40 meters, away out of bounds. Playing three, bad start. Oh well.

The playing group has not improved from day one only Brian our 14 handicapper continues having another 30 to total 60. Luke 33 and 25, Graham27 and 25 and David 35 and24. Round out the figures for the comp. The comradery continued throughout the event and the social atmosphere afterwards was rewarded with new friendships made or at least strong acquaintances.

The ESVGA representatives acquitted themselves well in all areas. Socially amenable and consistent in performance.

The result is the ESVGA have the team championship for 2023.

The credit goes to Colin Eaton, Peter Hopgood and Kevin Moylan who together totalled 215 points over the two-day event. Each received an individual trophy and a voucher for their efforts.

L-R David Waters, Horst Eberius, Colin Eaton, Kevin Moylan & Peter Hopgood. Missing Greg Allen

A very special mention to Colin Eaton who received a voucher for the best individual performance over two days with rounds of 38 and 38 (with misses) a very modest and quiet bloke.

Team 2 member, David Waters

Warburton bathed in Spring sunshine


 On a day where the weather gods were very kind to us and the Warburton course was presented in great condition, it was, not surprisingly, the local boys who dominated the prizes. But, firstly, a sincere appreciation to Superintendent, Paul-Mason, and his Apprentice, Andrew, for how the course was presented. Yes, of course there were some tricky pin placements, and some of the greens were faster than others, but none of your Committee appreciated the negative comment that came from one visiting member about “how crap these greens are!!” I’m prepared to let that one “slide” but I don’t see the need for negative comments, when everyone else offers encouraging comments towards a small, country Club!

A smooth start to Warburton game day as always with (L to R) President Ron Hottes, Treasurer Ken Batrouney, Captain Barry Smith & Acting Captain Sam Athans.

 I also need to thank Braydon, Ray and Skye, ( yummy sangers, thanks Skye) for looking after us both before and afterwards at Presentation! I would also like to thank a couple of local members who loaned out a seat in their cart to a thankful, visiting member. 

Now, onto the golf! Firstly, a huge congratulations to Horst-Eberius, who followed up his Autumn title, by winning the Winter one. Good shooting, Mr. Consistent!! 

Phil Pearson & Jack-Huel discuss tactics on the practice green

Acting Captain Sam Athans in Control

David Behan getting out from the trees

The winner on this day was Warburton’s Mick-Eldridge—no surprise that a “local” won. Also, that a “local” was the R/up . Andrew-McMath had 37points one shy of Mick! That talented Greg-Allan grabbed the bronze with 35 points! Balls got down to 29, but there was also a “dirty-dozen” giveaways, donated by Peter-Webb, for the bottom 12. ( Mr. Smith was very happy to walk away with something for his troubles, because a return trip from Kew is demanding, I believe!) Finally,  NTP’s were taken home by Bruce-Bower, ( both the A-Grade and for a delightful 2nd shot on the 10th! ), Wayne-Pollock, (B) and to our own Captain-Sam, (C-Grade). 

Warburton member Neil Leckenby driving on the second hole.

Frustration on David Waters face as his putt stips away

Neil Muller chips in unexpectedly for a par and 4-points. One of three four pointers in his round

David Waters putting from the fringe

Neil Leckenby putt just misses, watched by Steuart Hawke

Steuart Hawke putting on the Par 3 9th hole

Before I leave the Warburton gameday, I would just like to show my appreciation to all the members who offered to come and play, and to the many of you who made sure that I knew they had appreciated the course, the hospitality and most of all, the great camaraderie on display. THANK YOU, Gents. 

A reminder that we wish our 6 reps at the VVGA Teams Championship at Benalla, all the best next week. ( To Colin, Peter, Kevin, Horst, Greg & of course, David-Waters!) 

Steuart Hawke approach shot to the Par 4 18th. He finishes with a boggy on the courses hardest hole

President Ron Hottes congratulates Mick Eldridge the competitions winner

David Waters & Bruce Ferrall handing out the ball prizes

Finally, a reminder that the 1st Round of our ESVGA Championships will be played at Churchill-Park on Oct. 2nd. Of course, it will be a stroke round. I have discovered they have 8 carts to hire, but 3 are booked already. Contact Churchill on 9700 4494 to make your booking. (We are hoping some of the 8 carts from C-W’s Rowville site will be made available if required)

 Happy golfing, Gentlemen, in the meantime! ”    

Ron Hottes (President ESVGA)

Positive comments for our new course, Rossdale.

” So, fellow golfers, and ESVGA members, what did you think of Rossdale, where we held our August gameday?
Although a slightly disappointing field of 73 took part, I was pleasantly surprised that a number of positive comments came my way, ( and to others on Committee!) And this trend is also pleasing as the more feedback we receive, the better we can make informed decisions for YOU—the members!

Alan Teather, CP Lee, Daryl Dyer, Sanjay Misra on 1st tee.

A close one for Bruce Ferrall on the 5th green

Colin Looker fairway shot on the 17th hole

For what it is worth, here is my “take” on the day’s events. Clearly, facilities are very satisfactory; both roomy and comfortable. Being the first time there for many of us, the early morning staff were welcoming and helpful to Sam, Barry, Ken and myself. The afternoon staff continued that trend. The course itself was flat, but interesting; also in good condition. My one negative was that it was not well sign-posted. My group got lost more than once—-but then, that may have been us—not the course!! My group was one of the last back in, and a 4 hours 45-minute round did not help the President’s demeanour! More about slow play later, Gentlemen! Registration, lunch and Presentation all went smoothly, although the Prez’s daily joke may have been “trumped” by the Captain showing a hidden side to him! Finally, it clearly appears that most of the field found Rossdale’s course to their liking.

David Waters teeing off on the 7th tee

Bruce Ferrall watches his drive on the 15th tee

Neil Muller birdies the Par 4 14th from 65 metres.

Well that super-talented D.D. ( Daryl-Dyer) did. A superb 41 points beat the field by 4 clear shots! Great work, Daryl. My Committee was really to the fore at Presentation, with a second placing going to “Mr. Money-bags” Batrouney, another top-ten placing going to the Flying Ferrall AND—no less than two NTP’s claimed by Neil-Muller and K. B. again! Graham-Salter snuck in to grab the C-Grade NTP. If you want more proof it was a “Committee day”, Captain Sam grabbed a raffle prize, and ex-member, Alan-Teather was a two-time winner, by coming 3rd overall and grabbing one of the other raffle prizes!! I am usually praising the Committee members present on the day, for their usual fine efforts, but it appears that this gameday was “PAYBACK” for their fine efforts over the years!

Finally, Horst-Eberius , who was the Autumn ESVGA winner, has franked that with a win in the Winter event. Mr Consistent indeed! ( And he’s one of our reps at Benalla, in September, for the VVGA State Championships!!)

Colin Looker watches his putt fall short on the 17th green

Graeme Fox talks to his buggy

Brendan White strides out

So, Gents, on to the thorny issue of SLOW-PLAY! Look, I and others on Committee have been “banging on” about this for some time, and to be fair, the last few gameday rounds have been more than acceptable timewise. So, most of you have got the message—but not all! Captain Sam intends to send out some literature in the form of helpful hints , to make gamedays more enjoyable for EVERYONE!

Now, I would like to conclude by making a few remarks about my beloved Warbie!! Because of the dryish Winter so far, Warburton is in excellent condition, with the quality of the greens being a standout!! Although we have only 60-odd booked in, I am hoping for that number to increase through late entries , plus a number of our members playing as guests. We need those “locals” playing because some of them have their own carts, and will gladly take on a passenger—-for the price of a drink afterwards!! ( As I prepare this Report, I can tell you that 11 of the 12 available carts are already booked!) I do provide some chocolate/carrot cake with the sangers, and there will be an EXTRA NTP prize available. ( More details in the next Newsletter!!) so please consider coming if you have not already booked-in!

Peter Ridgwell, Bruce-Bower, Neville Evans & Neil Cowie heading for the 18th tee

Neil Muller and Bruce Ferrall discuss committee matters

President Ron Hottes congratulates winner Daryl Dyer

Enjoy your golf between now and Sept. 4th, Gents.

Regards, An optimistic Prez!” (Ron Hottes)

A wet track at Gardiners Run in July

“The July gameday for our ESVGA was held at Gardiner’s-Run on July 3rd. When their Management made the decision that it was just too wet for carts, the field was reduced markedly. Thus, a field of 70, the smallest ever for one of our most popular venues, played on a course that was wet in parts. There were certainly no issues with the greens or the bunkers, but many fairways were affected!
( Preferred lies did help to counter this challenge!)

 Sunrise meets early players at Gardiners Run

Sunrise slightly later at Gardiners Run

Before I leave this topic, two points need to be made, Gents.
Firstly, their own members have not had access to carts for over a month now, and your Executive was appreciative that those at G/Run who would ultimately make the decision re; cart availability, waited until just a few days before to decide—-in case a fine stretch of weather may have moved that decision in our favour—-it didn’t happen!!
The other point to note is that those intrepid members who did play were fully aware that damp conditions would be “in play”. As it was, for the most part, the members enjoyed their game, ( perhaps not their score), and I was pleasantly surprised by the lack of complaints coming my way, because I usually cop them! ( Yes, David, your email has been received, noted and will be aired at our next meeting!)

So, onto the day itself!! As always, Josh, Tas and Jarryd looked after us in the Clubhouse in a welcoming and helpful manner. ( One reason for their popularity.)
At Presentation, we discovered that, at least, two of our members were able to “beat par.” Both Peter-Rosenthal and Henry-Chen posted impressive scores of 37 points, to ” take home the chocolates!” Brendan-White filled the last spot on the dais with a solid 35 points. Balls, a little surprisingly, only reached down to 30! A pleasing aspect to the NTP winners is that Mr. Evans did NOT feature. Those awards were taken home by David-Borg, (A-Grade), Barry-Lacy, (B) and to our very own Alan-McMeekin, (C). That little win should make the next newsletter!! Our raffle voucher winners were listed as Bruce-Bower, Brian-Murphy & Phil-Guscott.
For those who enjoy playing at a DRY Gardiner’s-Run course, the 2nd round of our ESVGA Club-Championships is booked there in NOVEMBER! We should be safe—I hope!!

Rob Connaughton and Amaury De Rosbo heading off

Amaury De Rosbo’s fine bunker shot on the 16th to save par.

Joint Winners Henry Chen (Left) and Peter Rosenthal with their prizes

Now, Gents, I’m led to believe from our super-efficient Captain, that we have 76 booked for Rossdale. Although carts are listed at $45 , Rossdale currently have NO issues with their availability, plus they have a fleet of 20, I was told by Levi, (Assistant-Pro,) when I booked a cart for Barry and myself!

​**Finally, Gentlemen, just an important clarification—-a handful of members spoke to Barry-Smith on Monday, complimenting him on taking over the reins from me at this upcoming AGM. Wrong!! Barry has had a Life-Membership bestowed on him recently for his LONG and outstanding service to your ESVGA Committee, ( he is currently the longest-serving Committee member we have), and so therefore, like me, will be more than happy “strolling off into the sunset”; in his case, knowing he has gone above & beyond for our Club! So, he will need to be replaced also, meaning we need to see some hands up in December, to inject new and enthusiastic blood into the current Committee! Think about it, please, Gents, as you would be joining a very settled and competent Committee who will welcome you with open arms!

On that encouraging note, Gentlemen, I look forward to seeing plenty of you at Rossdale on August 7th, where a pleasant day will be on offer—-if it isn’t still bloody raining!

Early finishers Kevin Moylan, Alan Darcy, Brian Murphy & Steuart Hawke enjoying lunch.




Good shooting, from your contented Prez!”  (Ron Hottes)

Players representing the ESVGA at the VVGA Teams Championship. (Left to right) Greg Allen, David Waters, Horst Eberius, Kevin Moylan & Colin Eaton. Missing Peter Hopgood.


And a few photos of players leaving Gardiners Run as they head for home

Committee members Sam Athans & Alan McMeekin are about to pack away their gear

Horst Eberius obviously has had a good round at Gardiners Run.

Joint winner Peter Rosenthal returns to the Carpark.

Winter? A Perfect June day at Keysborough

” Members,  Ok, it cost more, for both the game and the carts, but hopefully, most of you will agree that our recent gameday at Keysborough provided many more Positives than Negatives! The course itself was in excellent condition—-according to the many players on the day who I conversed with. You know, deep down, that you can’t blame a poor score if the course you have played on is in good condition! The Keysborough staff, both in the Pro shop and at the bar, were very attentive to all our needs. The sangers were both fresh and delivered on time. The drink prices were reasonable, ( certainly not as exorbitant as a couple of other venues!) So, gentlemen, if you posted a poor score, like your unfortunate “leader”, you need to only look in the mirror to see who to blame!

Mick Eldridge, Peter Webb & Ian Young preparing to start their round

Sam Athans putting

John McAndrew leaves his best drive till last.

This gameday cost your ESVGA plenty, (financially), even at $60 a pop, but your Committee is very aware that our “brief” is to provide you with many and varied golf experiences in each calendar year, so that is why a handful of “boutique” venues are booked for your pleasure. ( Rossdale is coming up in August, and I hope that new venue will be accepted as keenly as Keysborough has!)

Ken Batrouney makes par under pressure on the 18th

Ken Steele trying to follow John McAndrew

Master putter Mick Eldridge from Warburton

So, I guess I have to talk about the golf, but when you play so poorly you don’t even feature in the ball rundown, your enthusiasm for “all things golf”—reduces!! Brendan-White had a good one, taking home the top prize with a solid 37 points! Good shooting, Sir. Ed-Farrall was just behind that mark recording 36 and Peter “Mr. Consistent” Rosenthal had a 34 next to his name. Hearty congratulations to all! The Balls reached 28, I believe, so we had plenty of winners on the day. An extra raffle prize was provided by Ian-Young and Paul-O’Grady was lucky enough to snare that! Thanks, Ian!

Greg Kyriazis & Kevin Bargar watch on while Sam Athans putts

Sam Athans fairway shot watched by Kevin Bargar

Sam Athans putting watching on is Kevin Bargar

And, so, onto July 3rd at the ever-popular Gardiner’s -Run. We expect a bumper field facing the starter that day, but a word of warning, Gents! There is a very real possibility that carts will not be available by then. We will know if that is the situation at least a week before, so if you are reliant on needing a cart, then pray that we DON’T get a “dump” of precipitation near that time!

Alan Young unfortunately missed this putt

Stan Lee stands guard with the flag watching Alan Young putt

David Waters ready to distribute ball prizes. Mick Eldridge seated on right

Finally, thanks again to everyone who played at Keysborough as the whole field had finished within 4.5 hours, which is what we expect—and hope for! Hope to see many of you at lovely Gardiner’s-Run in July!

Ron-Hottes, (President.)

Winter conditions at Waterford Valley in May

“Members, to be honest, I can’t praise you highly enough for “sticking it out” yesterday, through some very challenging conditions. Your collective loyalty needs to be praised indeed!

I always send a message to my Committee thanking them for their usual excellent input, and I made a point that it was just so pleasing that, of the 93 who started the day, nearly 90 were still there “at stumps”! Thank you, sincerely Gentlemen, for your perseverance! And, it also needs to be pointed out that the conviviality and the general good spirit within the room, after such a challenging round, was heart-warming. It goes without saying that our Presentations are the only highlight for many who may have had an “ordinary round”! Good mateship and a fun social experience, are often therapeutic for many of us!

 Norm Kearns teeing off on the Par 5 6th tee

Bill Bernhardt on the Par 5 6th tee

This line of thinking is a perfect segue into my next point of praise. Well done to Sam for handling his new Captaincy role so well. ( Barry will hate this comment, but Sam did have very large shoes to fill, but is handling those responsibilities with great aplomb!) This theme also gives me the opportunity to publicly thank Dave and Bruce again, for how quickly, and efficiently they got the results to Sam for his announcements. Also, to David-Stephens, for catching nearly all of you to support the raffle, ( over $400 in takings), and to Alan McMeekin for preparing another entertaining Newsletter! ( I wonder where he gets those cartoons from??)

Finally, a BIG thank you to Treasurer, K.B. (Ken Batrouney) for assuring the morning Registration goes smoothly, ( I tend to get a little “distracted” with informal “chats”!! ) and for having all the cash awards ready to go at Presentation!

Chris Lee smashes far down the 8th fairway

Ray Cross ready to play the 18th

Ian Young looking happy after finished the round with a great par

So, I suppose we need to mention the actual results! Colin-Eaton posted the best score on this challenging day, with 34 points—a very good result considering the conditions! Ian-Storey, ( great to have him back), just pipped David-Stephen on a countback, both with 33 points. It is also now official that Horst-Eberius is our Autumn champion, with 3 very consistent rounds doing it for him! The presentation of that voucher will be made at the Keysborough game. Good work, Horst. Neil-Muller and Russel-Manning were the joint Runners-up!

Bill Bernhardt watching his tee shot on the Par 4 10th tee

Monbulk Creek flowing swiftly at the crossing to the 10th green.

A wet Norm Kearns on the Par 4 12th tee

Talking about Keysborough, as beautiful a course as it is, members need to know that at $60, it is our most expensive game. And with $50 cart hire, some of even our most loyal members will baulk at that impost! With that in mind, it is pleasantly surprising that our current “booked” field number stands at 97! You also must factor in an 8.00 am start—not an ideal Winter start, but we had no option, Gents.

Finally, a mention re; slow-play— a complement actually! Since highlighting this issue back in February, we have had 3 gamedays where no group has taken more than 4.5 hours to complete their round. Well done, members—keep up this good habit!

President Ron Hottes with new Captain Sam Athans seated.

New Captain Sam Athans reading out the results. Watching on is Ron Hottes

Barry Smith congratulating winner Colin Eaton with 34 Stableford points

We shall see many of you on June 5th, with hopefully some sunny Winter skies greeting us, at beautiful Keysborough! In the meantime, good golfing, Boys. And—remember in the famous words of Winston-Churchill—There is nothing government can give you that it hasn’t taken from you in the first place!! ( In honour of the recent Budget!)

Ron Hottes (President ESVGA)

Head for the hills, Cardinia Beaconhills

” A healthy field of 87 ESVGA members played at Cardinia Beaconhills on Monday under pleasant skies and in comfortable conditions—well, not everyone’s golf was “comfortable”, but all other aspects of the day were! The course itself was in excellent condition, with particularly fast greens to master! The early bird organisers were welcomed very helpfully by the Club Pro, Bryce. (Later, he, Alex and Daniel attended to all our clubhouse needs, and the sandwiches must get a mention—very tasty!)

Finally, on this subject, I must mention that I received more compliments about the day than usual; suggesting 2 points—Cardinia Beaconhills looks like staying on the roster for 2024—AND those members of my hard-working Committee deserve credit for that positivity! Well done, Gents, especially David, Alan and Neil for getting the results to me in “club record” time!!

Bobby Smith watches his ball on the Par 3 11th hole.

Daniel Ervin putting carefully while Rob Connaughton, Amaury De Rosbo and Bruce Robinson watch.

John Matthews on the long downhill Par 3 2nd hole.

And, so to the results, Gentlemen. Norm-Kearns had a day out—topping the list with 38 points. Neil-Muller took the runner-up honours with 37. ( One of his playing partners noted that his putting “had to be seen to be believed!”) Also reaching the dais was Horst-Eberius with a solid 36 points. Hearty congratulations to all 10 voucher winners. Of course, a special mention to our oldest “active” member, Bill-Bernhardt, who snared the C-Grade NTP on the 6th. Not a bad effort for young Bill, who is rising 90 in 5 months!! The other NTPs went to Horst-Eberius, giving him a good day’s return, and Daniel-Ervin. The balls reached all the way down to 28.

Bill Bernhardt putting on the Par 4 16th, watched by John Matthews and Bobby Smith

Bobby Smith putting on the Par 4 16th watched by John Matthews

John Matthews putting on the Par 4 16th

Finally, a comment on my Committee. The nine who were there all played their part in making the day one of the smoother, enjoyable game-days! Thanks, Gentlemen.
Regarding future games, we have some fine Winter golf coming up. In order, Waterford-Valley, Keysborough, (note: an 8.00am start!!), the very popular Gardiner’s-Run and to lead us into Spring, the new Club on the block—Rossdale, ( really looking forward to that one!) As we have an Autumn comp playing now, members, there will be an Aggregate Stableford Winter comp. for June, July & August. The results of the current Autumn comp will be announced after the Waterford game—-and any number of members are in the running to win the voucher; just have 40+ points and you are in with a BIG chance!

John Matthews tees off on the picturesque Par 5 3rd

Sam Athans and Peter Hopgood pose in their hired cart.

31 year ESVGA member Charles Watt, sneaks away on his cart.

Finally, a warm congratulations to all those who played at Beaconhills, because it was noted, by Mr. Secretary, of course, that ALL groups were in by about 1:00pm—meaning no one took more than 4.5 hours. Well done, Gentlemen!

And so, onwards to Waterford-Valley, a well-kept course, where we are always treated well— before, during and after our game!
Regards, An invested President!

Healesville in March

” Our recent game day at Healesville RACV provided 112 players with an experience on a unique course! With a top score of 35 points, obtained by only two of those 112 players, it was obvious that the course was much tougher than its slope rating of 115 indicated. So, special congratulations to joint winners, David-Waters and C.P. Lee. ( At least someone on my Committee could play golf on that day—good work, Dave!!) There were plenty of scores below mid-20’s, and, if my game is anything to go by, plenty of lost balls, too!! It can be assumed that the course easily won on the day!!

Ron Hottes and Danny Cappellani at the booking desk

Start of play

Alan McDonald watches Henk de Graaf on the Par 4 1st

We were well served by Ben, the Club Pro, and his staff. They looked after us attentively for the whole time we were there. Thanks, Ben, Dutchie, Con etc. The sandwiches were acceptable, but the thick bread used was not appreciated by some of our members! There were plenty of girls behind the counter attending to our requests, although waiting times for service appeared to be lengthier than expected.

Bill Shaw just misses this putt

Alan McDonald sinks this downhill putt for birdie on the Par 5 8th

Life Member Rod Coling putting

There were a couple of issues that arose which need explanation!
Many of our members were disappointed that we played off the white tees. This was strongly requested by Healesville, but it meant that most of you played off handicaps lower than you ever have before!! This resulted in NONE of our 112-strong field matching or beating par. If we go back there next year, we will insist on playing off the blue tees, which attracts a slope-rating of 122.

Bill Bernhardt, Tex van der Kooi and Stan Lee waiting to tee off

Kevin Moylan ready to tee off on Par 4 5th.

Peter Gounas, Peter Jones, Kevin Wells watching Dave Stevens make it 4 balls on the green

The other issue that caused some concern, was the 2-tee staggered start, as opposed to our usual Shotgun start. I’m sorry, but Healesville gave us a clear choice—conduct your Shotgun start, but the field will be limited to 80 or—as we chose, allow for 30+ more of our members to play under the staggered start system. Clearly, we chose to allow as many of our members as possible to participate. Did we make the right choice? I hope you, the members, think we did!

Sanjay Misra watches his shot, while C.P. Lee limbers up!

Russell Manning putts to within 15cm on the Par 4 6th

Alan McDonald watches his drive on the Par 4 9th

And, so, it’s on to Cardinia-Beaconhills on April 3rd, where we will gladly revert to an 8.30 Shotgun start. That’s right, Folks, back to 8.30, because Daylight-Saving finishes the day before!! The raffle will be back, and the course may once again win the day, because the slope-rating there is 114! (No choice either, as they only use blue tees.) At this stage, we have an 80+ field, but we can cater for many more, if you haven’t booked in yet. (Talking about booking-in, they only have 12 carts, so get in early for that!)

See you at quirky, tight Beaconhills on the 3rd April.
Regards, Your President who is clearly incompetent at golf!


Heading south to Berwick Montuna

“Very pleasant golfing weather greeted our members, at Berwick-Montuna, on February 6th.
A field of 93 tackled the quirky, but well-presented course, with accolades going to both the ground staff and the head Pro, Glenn. Of course, as always at B.M. the clubhouse staff, led by Manager Shaun, treated us equally as well. ( There were plenty of positive comments about the improved quality of the greens, too!)

Barry Mitchell teeing off on
the Par 4 11th

Phil Pearson hitting to the NTP 13th watched by Peter Johnson and Barry Mitchell

Phil Pearson watches Peter Johnson’s drive to the Par 3 18th

On the golf itself, there were plenty of scores in the mid to high-30’s, but our three top scorers were Peter-Noar, with a superb 41, Peter-Hopgood not far behind with 40 and Kevin-Moylan, who has started this year in brilliant form, notched a solid 38 points. ( And, of course, Wooshka would like EVERYONE to know that he was just behind the placegetters with 37!!) The balls ran out at 29, of course, because your trusty Pres had—-wait for it—-28 points!!

We now look forward to Healesville RACV, scheduled for March 6th, and we have 112 booked at the time of writing this report. It will be a 2-tee start, from 7.30 “early birds”, through to some of us hitting off at 10.00am. The field is capped at 120, so get in now if you want to play! The good news is that I have “negotiated” with their Leisure-Manager with cart hire coming down to $35 this time around—-it was $45 last year!! But the other good news is that they have 24 carts at their disposal, and at last count, there were only 10 booked!!

Phil Pearson putting out on the Par 4 6th

Berwick Montuna winner Peter Noar congratulated by ESVGA Treasurer Ken Batrouney

Now, finally, Gents, a couple of subtle hints to avoid slow-play, which has been discussed recently among a few disgruntled members!

1) Your focus should be to keep up with the group IN FRONT of you—don’t worry about the group following.

2) If you finish a hole early, like you have “scratched” it, then go over to the next tee and hit off ahead of the others in your group!

& 3) If you are travelling in a cart, think where it’s best to park it, especially around the greens. ( E.g., not directly in front of that green!!) Ironically, our times at B.M. were very good, but not so at Eastwood, where more than one group clocked-up a 5 hour–PLUS round. That just should NOT happen, Gentlemen!

I look forward to seeing many of you at Healesville, where 5-hour rounds won’t happen, because it’s a shortish course, and we are not playing in a shotgun start.

Regards, Ron-H. ( President.)

Our 2023 year starts at Eastwood

” HAPPY NEW YEAR, Gentlemen. Let’s make it better than 2022—especially on the various courses we venture to!

104 ESVGA members played at Eastwood in January, and there is no better course to begin the new golfing year! There were some issues regarding the preparation and distribution of cards for the day’s play, but after these were overcome, we enjoyed the usual excellent hospitality, both on and off the course, that Eastwood always provides. Special mentions to Jake, (new Manager), Pete,( Club Pro), Louella and Linda ,( behind the bar), all of whom serviced us very well! It must also be mentioned that the course itself was in “tip-top” condition, so well done to the ground staff!

Bill Bernhardt, Ian Young & Derek Wilson waiting for the fairway to clear in the shade

Players teeing off the 15th hole

Alan Robinson (left) and Steuart Hawke seeking shade while walking the fairway

And, so to the day itself.
Trophies were presented to—Sam-Athans and Gary-Gray,( joint winners of the C-Grade Nett), to Graeme-Luxford,( B-Grade Nett winner), to David-Stephens,( A-Grade Nett winner) and to David-Borg, who was our overall Open Champion for 2022. Hearty congratulations to all 4 of them.

Steuart Hawke makes this great swing to the 14th green, closest to the hole and made par

Tee shots to the Par 3 14th hole.

Al Robinson follows Stuart Hawke’s shot onto the 14th green and also gets par

2022 ESVGA Champion David Borg hitting wide on the 14th

With regard to the daily comp results, we had a clear winner on the day—Alan-Young had two nines of 23 &20 for a sensational 43 points, to take home the top voucher by 3 clear points!! Our daily R/up was David-Borg, with a 40-point total—–which proved that his Championship “heroics” were no fluke!! NTP winners were as follows: Peter-Ridgwell,(A-grade), Peter-Webb,(b) and to Kenny-Steele,(C), who then proceeded to tell us how his tee shot won it for him—memorable, but also with a fair slice of luck! We finished the day with a long ball countdown that extended to 33,( meaning your poor old, harassed Pres got something for his troubles!!)

Jack Huel has lost his passenger

Jack Huel tees off while in the background, young Bill Bernhardt prepares for his next shot

New dress code for summer or has Bruce Ferrall just played his ball from the water

And so, onto quirky, challenging Berwick/Montuna, where they appear to have some “snaky” problems just at the moment.( A dozen sightings since the week before Christmas!!) If you wish to book a cart, then do it pronto, as they only have 10 available, I believe.

Excellent service from the bar staff

Neil Smith enjoying a sandwich and rest after the game

I hope to see many of you there. In the meantime, stay cool, enjoy your golf—-and especially—-stay SAFE!

Best wishes, Ron-H. (President—ESVGA).

ESVGA 2022 Champions receive their trophies

President Ron Hottes congratulates 2022 ESVGA Champion David Borg


2022 ESVGA Gross Champion

 David Borg


Championship Grade Winners

A Grade Nett – David Stevens

B Grade Nett – Graeme Luxford

C Grade Nett (Joint Winners) – Sam Athans & Gary Gray

Barry Smith congratulates A Grade Nett winner David Stevens

Barry Smith congratulates B Grade Nett Champion Graeme Luxford

Barry Smith congratulates C Grade Joint Nett winner Gary Gray

Barry Smith congratulates C grade Nett Winner Sam Athans accepted by Norm Kearns

Gross Champion plus Nett grades A, B and C(Joint winners)