AC Association Croquet

This Tournament is a one-day Association Croquet singles competition held at Watford and open to members of the national Croquet Association. It is also listed in the CA fixtures calendar.

Title: Watford One-Day AC Tournament Watford AC Open Tournament
results by year:

Handicaps: AC16-
Date: Saturday 15 June 2013
Number of places: 12 Entries allocated so far: 12                 THIS TOURNAMENT IS NOW FULL
Secretary: Email:   click on link to send an email
Phone: 01923 241582
Address: please ask, or log in and obtain it from the CA member's directory
Manager: Simon Hathrell
RoT: Arthur Reed
Trophy: The Alfred Purvis Memorial Cup (current holder: Graham Brightwell)
Entries: Allocation: 1 April. Closing: 8 June.
Entries should be submitted using the standard CA Tournament entry form.
If you have a preference between Level Advanced and Handicap Advanced, please remember to indicate this with your entry.
Entry fee: £8. Cheques payable to "Watford (Cassiobury) Croquet Club".
Format: Two independent blocks:
Block 'A': Level Advanced (4 to 8 players, subject to entry)
Block 'B': Handicap Advanced (4 to 8 players, subject to entry)


  1. Play starts at 09:30, and players must be prepared to play three games in the day.
  2. Refreshments and a light tea are provided free of charge but please bring your own lunch.
  3. Dawson balls will be used.
Click on images for an enlargement

An eventful day started in breezy but mostly sunny conditions on slow courts which were still damp from overnight rain, with eight players in the 'A' block playing Level Advanced and four players in the 'B' block playing Handicap Advanced.

In the 'A' block defending champion Graham Brightwell was having trouble with the slow conditions and eventually lost a close game to visitor Jeremy Scott, while Gary Bennett won fairly easily against John Smallbone, and visitors Jon Palin and Terry Mahoney beat home players Arthur Reed and John Bee respectively. Meanwhile in the 'B' block Robin Barry won comfortably against Brian Havill, while Alan Clark won a close game against Rick Weinstein that went to time.

Showers had been forecast for the early afternoon. They arrived as expected as the session started, but their persistence and intensity came as a bit of a surprise. Terry Mahoney managed to win fairly quickly against Jeremy Scott, but by about 3pm as the game between Gary Bennett and Jon Palin approached its conclusion, standing water had started to appear in a few places. Gary and Jon agreed to carry on notwithstanding, and Gary emerged as the winner to join Terry on 2/2 each; but with the deteriorating conditions play in two of the other 'A' bock games was suspended for tea and then abandoned since at that point none of the four players involved could win the title. In the 'B' block however, both games were played to a conclusion, and with Alan Clark having two wins and his prospective third round opponent on no wins, a quick calculation confirmed that Alan would inevitably win the title regardless of any results in that round.

Winner Gary Bennett (left)
with sun out and clouds departing

The wind eased and the rain finally stopped at about 3:30. The deciding game for the title was to be between Gary Bennett and Terry Mahoney, but the debate about further play continued. The Watford courts drain quickly because they lie on higher ground at the top end of Cassiobury Park, well above the water-table. In the absence of further rain the puddles were clearly disappearing, and court 3 was deemed playable again by 4pm. Gary Bennett was happy to proceed, but his opponent claimed that further rain was on its way soon and that he was unwilling to play on, so Gary was awarded the 'A' block title and the trophy by walk-over. Several of the other rain-soaked 'A' block contestants also chose to depart rather than play on, so the consolation prize for the player (other than the winner) with the largest net index point gain was not awarded.

'B'-block winner Alan Clark (left)

With the rain now stopped the 'B' block contestants showed more enthusiasm however, with all four choosing to play their scheduled third round game even though the overall block outcome was already determined.

So play resumed shortly after 4pm, and fortunately there was no further rain, the sun re-emerged, and the players were rewarded with conditions that quickly saw the disappearance of any remaining surface water on the courts. Both games went to close finishes and to time, with Brian Havill sticking in the jaws of 4-back after time was called, thus leaving Alan Clark to put together a good closing break in the extension period to peg out and clinch his 3/3 block win and a handicap reduction. Meanwhile Rick Weinstein ran rover after time to draw level against Robin Barry with both players on peg and rover, but then inexplicably decided to approach hoop 6 again off Robin's ball and wrongly run it, thus gifting Robin an easy roquet and a +2 win on time as the day finally drew to a close.


Block ALevel Advanced
Results vs.: GBe TM JP JSc JSm JB AR GBr WINS NET
Gary Bennett   w/o +6   +15       3 +7
Terry Mahoney def     +22   +7     2 +13
Jon Palin -6           +14   1 +5
Jeremy Scott   -22           +3 1 +4
John Smallbone -15               0 -2
John Bee   -7             0 -5
Arthur Reed     -14           0 -10
Graham Brightwell       -3         0 -12
Block BHandicap Advanced
Results vs.: AC RB RW BH WINS NET
Alan Clark   +12 +2T +8 3 +30
Robin Barry -12   +2T +13 2 +10
Rick Weinstein -2T -2T   +1T 1 -10
Brian Havill -8 -13 -1T   0 -30
Gary Bennett,
Alan Clark
Name Club H'cap
Gary Bennett Watford 0
Graham Brightwell Surbiton
Terry Mahoney St. Albans
Arthur Reed Watford
Jon Palin St. Albans
Jeremy Scott Letchworth
John Smallbone Watford
John Bee Watford 5
Alan Clark Watford 8
Brian Havill Watford 9
Rick Weinstein Hampstead Heath 9
Robin Barry Watford 10

Handicap change: Alan Clark 8 to 7

Gary Bennett
(left foreground)

Terry Mahoney

Jeremy Scott
steering his shot

Alan Clark

Morning sunshine

Graham Brightwell

Jon Palin

John Bee

John Smallbone

Robin Barry

Rick Weinstein

Brian Havill

Arthur Reed
Click on images for an enlargement