Hugh Stephenson and Steve Edney competed for the Golf Croquet Trophy this year. Best of three games.
Steve won the toss, so played Blue and Black. Hugh won the first hoop, Steve the second, and both players took it in turns to win the next hoop until Hugh won three in a row to win 7-4.
In the second game, again Hugh took the first hoop, and again Steve the second, and again taking it in turns until Steve broke away 5-3, and this time won the game 7-4.
In the third, deciding, game, the first hoop took a few shots to be won, again by Hugh. Steve took the next two, then Hugh levelled, and then Hugh took a 3-2 lead, and then Steve equalized. Hugh went to 4-3, but back came Steve on the next hoop, 4-all. Yet again, Hugh went 5-4 up, only for Steve to level 5-5. Guess who won the next hoop? Yes, it was Hugh, but Steve levelled once more to make it 6-all.
Golden hoop. All or nothing, Steve played Black nicely into a shooting position, 6 feet from the hoop, a bit to the right. Hugh knocked Yellow a long way past but also a potential for a hoop-run. Steve’s Blue crept in close to the hoop but under hit and on the wrong side. Hugh managed to get Red into a closer position, straighter than Steve’s Black. So what should Steve do? Having missed a couple of similar shots earlier, there was initial doubt, but given the position of the Red, Steve went for it. Straight through for the win!
So the final score was Steve 2 – 1 Hugh. 4-7, 7-4, 7-6 (golden hoop).