Christmas Dinner and Dance 2022

On Saturday 10th December 2022, the Algarve Croquet Club hosted Christmas Dinner and Dance event. It was a fantastic evening with more than fifty people attending and everyone said they had an absolutely great time. The meal was faultless as was the service and invited artist Susana Neves started slowly and built up to pocket dynamite. It really could not have been better.


Thank you everyone involved and hopefully we will meet at the Christmas Sundowner on December 20th at 14:00!



European Cup 2022 Report

On November 5-6th the Algarve Croquet Club hosted European Cup League. 4 European teams, ACC, Roehampton (UK), Villanueva (ESP) and SigLig (LAT), were fighting for the ticket for the Grand Final in Madrid in 2023. We had a little practice on Friday evening. During Saturday and Sunday, we had a beautiful weather with no clouds whatsoever. Each day started with 30 minutes practice and then continued with 45 minutes games double-banking on our 2 lawns. Each day we had a nice lunch at the club house and on Saturday we enjoyed lovely Portuguese food in the best restaurant in the area. ACC arranged the Buggy Bar right next to the lawn and provided cakes and biscuits for everyone.


As expected, the 1st place goes to Roehampton Team after they managed to win all 3 matches and were clearly the best squad by a comfortable margin. All teams enjoyed the event thoroughly and assessed the quality of the lawns as good. There were no complaints received, so all in all, a great success.


Results: Croquet Scores Results Webpage


In the end, ACC would like to say a big THANK YOU to all the players involved and to European Croquet Federation for giving us the opportunity to host this beautiful event. Hopefully see you next year!



Chairman’s Shield 2022 Report

On September 3rd and 4th, Algarve Croquet Club held its second edition of Chairman’s Shield Golf Croquet Singles Tournament. In beautiful weather, 8 players decided to fight for the prize money, which was generously sponsored by ACC Chairman William Weber, who is also a founder of this great event. Competition applied a round robin format, where everybody plays everybody, and this guaranteed perfectly fair results compared to other popular format, which is blocks play combined with elimination phase where some lucky draws may be involved. Players played best of 13 hoops games with a 1 hour time limit. Benamor Golf supported players with a lovely lunch both days and there was a very friendly atmosphere throughout the whole event with a very few referee calls.


Trevor Morgan, who finished 3rd had a slow start but managed to hold his own in the end. He overtook William Weber (4th) on net hoops criterion. William, being predominantly an AC player, has made a huge GC progress and even beat Trevor in their direct encounter 7:6. Second place was secured by Stephen Birrane who recently returned from the Teams World Championship in the United Kingdom. After a shy start and losing to a very well playing William, Stephen started to play more consistently and clinched the 2nd place. In the end, the trophy and the 1st place went to a defending champion Dusan Turcer who managed to win all the games including a somewhat lucky match against Stephen, which was decided on a golden hoop where Stephen had a straight 4 yard shot but missed and lost the game unfortunately.


Players enjoyed the event thoroughly and the next edition of ACC Chairman’s Shield in 2023 will have a slight change in the format – using handicap system – which will bring even more fighting games and should give a chance to players of any level to fight for the trophy.


Prize Winners (wins, losses, net hoops):

1. Dusan Turcer 7W 0L (+31)

2. Stephen Birrane 5W 2L (+21)

3. Trevor Morgan 4W 3L ( +7)


Welcome to our new home - At Benamor Golf!

Bookings Open Now!

To Book your lawn slot at Benamor, please contact Benamor Golf by emailing: reservas@benamorgolf.com or Telephone +351/281320880. The slots are 2 hours and you can book from 09:00 through to the last slot which starts at 18:00 and finishes at 20:00. Bookings can only be made up to one week in advance.


Ladies Day

Ladies day will be on Wednesday Mornings 09:00 to 12:00 booking is by emailing: algarvecroquetclub@gmail.com. This will start from Tuesday August 10th. Closing time for bookings is 24 hours before. Check in at reception before play.


Men's Day

Men's Day will be on Thursday mornings 09:00 to 12:00 booking is by emailing: algarvecroquetclub@gmail.com. This will start from Tuesday August 19th. Closing time for bookings is 24 hours before. Check in at reception before play.


Sundowner Tournament

Sundowner will be run Biweekly on Tuesdays from 16:00 to 20:00. Booking to attend is by emailing: algarvecroquetclub@gmail.com. These will be on the following dates this month: August 11th and 25th. The refreshment cart will be in attendance. Check in at reception before play.


02/05/2021 - THE GREAT LOCKDOWN ESCAPE - TOURNAMENT REPORT

Cautiously extricating themselves from the latest lockdown-easing, 20 ACC members braved a full day in glorious sunshine to contest the Lockdown Escape Event. Some players were recently thought to have been honing their skills in anticipation of glory, but there was little evidence of this before lunch, and even less afterwards. The award for the Most Heroic Failure, (the Square Ball Trophy) was decided early in the day, when a competitor, playing blue, found both his own and his partner’s ball positioned directly in front of the hoop with the opposition nowhere in normal sight. Blue ignored the hoop and promptly, and very deliberately, cleared black to a far boundary, and ran on to join it. In the ensuing lightbulb moment, blue was observed rooted to the spot with a hand firmly and characteristically, clasped to his forehead. The Shot of the Day was awarded to Paul Shawe for a hammer shot out of hoop 3 which ended in the jaws of hoop 4 just as time was called.


With the hotel restaurant still closed, BBQ burgers and salad for lunch were provided by John and Jenny Melton and Bev Shawe, with proceeds towards club funds. The air of apparent Edwardian leisure was interrupted by play recommencing for the afternoon session with Stephanie Shreeve and Trevor Morgan, Margot Engstrom and Marlis Weissenborn, and John Melton with William Weber all looking potential winners. Stephanie and Trevor eventually won, winning 8 of their 9 games, with Margot and Marlis as runners up winning 6.


By close of play, some players were exhibiting well defined bands of white skin underneath their watchstraps and straw hats were much in evidence. A good summer to come?



26/07/20 - ACC Croquet Weekend Report

The results of the very successful two-day residential tournament are as follows:

Doubles

1st

Carmen & Fernando (Spain)

2nd

Virginia & Filipe (Portugal)

3st

Marji & Steve Hencher (Yorkshire)

Runners Up

Barbara & Clive (Tavira) and Alain & Giselle (France)

Singles

1st

Carmen

1st

Fernando

2nd

Virginia

2nd

Clive

3st

Barbara

3st

Alain

Runners Up

Giselle & Marji

Runners Up

Filipe & Steve

The first three ladies tied but Carmen won on a count back by a single hoop.


It must be mentioned that Alain was the only player to beat Fernando. Dusan played a short exhibition match against Fernando, which, despite some amazingly hard hitting he lost 3-5. The Chairman came and watched the closing stages of the singles tournaments.

11/07/20 - FRIENDLY MATCH V WALKING FOOTBALL on Saturday 11th July

It was hot. Some were beginning to seriously wilt in mid day temperatures around 34 degrees in new money. Some with shaven heads were beginning to question the wisdom of taking the juice out of those with floppy straw hats. Those playing with black were having serious difficulty focussing on the ball hidden in their own dense shadow. Social distancing was a pain, but controllable, rendering whispered tactics audible to all around the lawn. Cries of anguish were matched by hoots of laughter and the occasional croak from the toads in the pond.


All the games were well contested, with the lawn split in two, enabling 16 players on at any one time, the atmosphere was bustling as 5 pairs from Walking Football fought it out against 5 ACC pairs and the clock. (A guide to using the clock to your advantage may be added to the club library shortly). The team event was won by ACC with cross-clubber Paul Shawe and partner Carole Maddox winning the vinho for best Walking Football pair and Mark Shreeve and Jenny Melton taking the honours for ACC. The post prandial roll up session sadly drew to a close around 3.30, largely due to the effects of excessive heat and beverages. Thanks to you guys and gals from Walking Football for helping to make a great day.


10/07/20 - ACC Members take part in German GC Open

Four ACC members played in the German GC Open 26-28 June; Marlene und Dieter Reinsch, Reinhard Pfitzner, and Ray Ferguson. Dieter beat Reinhard in the final of the Plate event! ACC is sending warm greetings to Germany and cannot wait to see you guys again!


18/03/20 - Chaminé report from Ted

We, Barbro and Tommy Almgren and my wife Christina and I, went to Quinta dos Poetas and played croquet on Sunday 15th of March. For us it was the first visit for a very long time and we enjoyed playing again a lot. Wonderful to see the new Lawn 1 grow so well. Playing on Lawn 2, is a bit of a lottery, on the other hand its the same for all of us. An email about visiting Hotel & Croquet Club Quinta da Chaminé had arrived a few days earlier from the club. After a chat with Barbara Winery beside the lawn to know more about the place, a quick decision was made among us: Looks nice we have to go there - we called - nice contact - a reservation was made.


The coming Wednesday the 18th we went the 171 km towards Ferreira do Alentejo. Quinta da Chaminé is located beautifully in the Alentejo landscape and the club house, hotel in the middle of a very large olive plantation. Upon arrival we received a warm welcome from the owner Don Francisco del Cuvillo and his assistant Daniel. For lunch we were served a good Spanish omelette salad and nice wines. Then it was check in to our nice rooms.


Now it was the croquet time. What a lawn!!! The same quality as lawn 1 at Bela Romano – at least. We played several games during the afternoon teaching each other but also fun competition in the warm sun and were served nice refreshments between the games.


After a short rest it was croquet time again. As the lawn was lit up we were able to played in the dark Alentejo evening. New and exciting experience.


Then we had a good dinner, the grouse, was enjoyed with nice wines from the area. We were notified in the evening that the President had declared "State of Emergency" in Portugal. With some uncertainty what this would mean, we went to bed. We woke up to a brilliant day and had a good breakfast served by Daniel. Then it was time for games. The four Swedes started to play some training rounds. Don Francisco came and suggested a match - individually - where then the winners in each match met in a final. And the losers a match for the third prize. Hard competition with tight numbers and one of us was the winner. After the game, Don Fransisco, under the supervision of Daniel and us, cooked one of his own recipes a good risotto with shrimps. As dessert we were told we were served a typical Alentejo dessert, orange in pieces served with olive oil and cinnamon. Simple but lovely!


Then it was time to say goodbye, a lovely 24 hours stay was ended. We returned to the Algarve coast on close to empty roads. We thank Conde Francisco and Condessa Pilar del Cuvillo, as well as their always present Daniel. When "the State of Emergency" has lifted, and life is back to "normal" we will return. We highly recommend that you do the same. Here are some pictures from our tour.


All the best to you,

Ted


THE GREAT ESCAPE - January 2020

The Chamine Six escape the Algarve deluge

Under heavy rain, uncharacteristically black Algarve skies, and a forecast of worse to come, 2 wrinklies and 4 super-vets headed north up the A2 into the Alentejo in search of uninterrupted hoop running on some fast flat grass. Two 4x4s and one lookalike arrived at Quinta de Chamine, close to Ferreira do Alentejo, having outrun the threatened weather front, and in time for lunch. “Which room are we in?” we- asked. “Take your pick” Sophia replied, ”you’re here first.” So we did.


Following a good lunch, long-johns were rapidly applied since the wind was a little chilly round the nethers. Six-sweater Dave was having difficulty in adjusting his swing through a mountain of woollen clothing, Susan was lost without a pond to aim at, and one ladies studded leather gloves appeared to have come from the set of ‘A Game of Thrones’. (The owner did not intend to be trifled with.)


Significant quantities of restorative whisky and gin (a practice which seems to have fallen out of favour with modern sports coaches) and a roaring log fire, aided the recovery period, led to a full evening of good food and wine, and a seriously good nights sleep.


And then on day two, it rained. Hard. With hail. The lawn turned white in seconds. Large puddles appeared such that boat hire was being considered for getting from one hoop to the next. Fortunately we were enjoying lunch at that moment, and by the time we had finished, the skies had cleared, the lawn had dried out, and play continued uninterrupted.


Day three concluded with a game of 6 ball, chaps versus chapesses, in which the chaps contrived to lose the Golden Hoop. It is thought the following car journey home was the quietest ever experienced.



22nd to 24th January - Trip to Chamine Croquet Club

Dear croquet players, there is upcoming trip to Chamine Croquet Club this week, Wednesday/Thursday/Friday, 2 rooms are now available due to cancellations. Weather forecast is cloudy with a little rain so play should not be a problem. This is a AAA rated lawn so fantastic to play on. If interested please let us know (ACC Facebook page), everyone welcome.



26/11/19 - Luz v The Others - Doubles Tournament




They came from out Tavira way, with the sun low in the East;

They came with mallets shouldered, to slay the Algarvean beast.

They fought the hoops real keenly, they struck the balls with glee;

Finesse was often missing, in their quest for victory.


By noon the fray was even, Big M was running scared;

Not even beer and baggies, disguised the way they’d fared.


The skies were getting heavy, the vinho took its toll;

The grass was just not helping, to make a good long roll.

The daylight started fading, with the sun low in the West;

The Luz lot lay defeated, the Algarveans came off best.


On an uncharacteristically damp Algarve day the Luz Layabouts challenge to Os Outres Algaveans was contested between teams of five pairs, who played for individual places as well as scoring points for their respective teams. The games were incredibly closely fought with the team result standing at Algarveans 23 points, Luz 22 points. Individual winners were Dusan Turcer and Douglas De Souza (Luz) scoring 7 out of a possible 9; runners up were Margot Engstrom and Marlis Wiessenborn (Algarveans) 6½ out of 9.


The "Stroke of the Day" Trophy was awarded to Trevor Morgan for running hoop 4 with a multi directional curved shot played from beyond hoop 2. Trevor was adjudged to have displayed great skill in assessing the various slopes on the lawn and for the "bend it like Beckham" effect achieved as the ball crept through the hoop. Some muttered "Fluke!"


Their will be no club tournaments in December due to holidays etc. Dates for January and February events are dependant on lawn maintenance and repair work. Watch this space.

12/10/19 - FIRST SOCIAL DOUBLES TOURNAMENT

The Club's first social tournament was held on Saturday 12th October and attracted an entry of 8 pairs. The early morning skies over Monte San Miguel promised rain, which fortunately did not materialise, though the lawns were very wet due to overnight rain and a leaking irrigation pipe, such that certain players' footwear was frequently heard making embarrassing noises as they struggled through the wetter areas. By lunchtime conditions were much improved, considerably quieter, and less distracting. After an excellent buffet lunch, the sun broke through, playing conditions were much improved, and in some cases playing standards lessened.


Playing in one round robin group, double banked, with timed games, players were continually in action, with no one sitting out; a tiring day but great fun, with some entertaining croquet played. One careless lady was observed using excessive force in driving a ball into the terrapin pond. She steadfastly refused to retrieve the ball, claiming not to have brought her snorkelling gear, or her thigh waders, with her. Eco-friendly inaugural trophies were constructed from recycled timber roof beams and broken croquet balls and were presented to winners Trevor Morgan and Margot Gottan, who won all their games bar one which they tied with Dusan Turcer and Alain Girouard.


Final Standings:


1. Trevor Morgan and Margot Gottan

2. Martin Walsh and Douglas De Souza

3. Dusan Turcer and Alain Girouard

4. Clive Viney and Barbara Viney

5. Jeff Denman and Pat Irwin

6. David Denman and Pearl Middleton

7. Gavin Stevenson Bennet and Sue Stevenson Bennet

8. John Melton and Jenny Melton


30/09/19 - VISIT TO QUINTA DA CHAMINE

For three days at the beginning of September 30th club members stayed at Quinta da Chamine, Ferreira do Alentejo, and played almost continuous croquet in glorious weather and in very comfortable surroundings. Mixed doubles GC was played throughout and in the first tournament John and Jenny Melton were overall winners, winning 4 out of their 5 games, beating Stephanie Shreeve and David Denman into second place on points difference.


The same basic pairs were kept for the second tournament, except that for each game the ladies swapped sides, giving a change of pairings, with individual gentleman and lady winners. Barbara Viney and Jenny Melton tied for first place, with Adrian Wallace winning for the gentlemen and Clive Viney as runner-up.


Throughout the event, the games were all closely contested; of the 42 games played, 13 went to the golden hoop and a further 13 were won 7 – 5. The lawn was in excellent condition. Judging the pace was challenging, as the sun was slow to burn off the moisture in the mornings, and the evening dew arrived quite early.


Hopefully this will be the first of many club events at this excellent venue.