National Forest AC Tournament


A national Association Croquet weekend handicap tournament at Moira.
  (In 2015 and 2016 this was a level-play B-level tournament for AC handicap range 1 to 8.)

Previous winners (Ashby winners in bold):
2011 Clive Goode
2012 Dave Gunn
2013 Richard Sanville
2014 Not contested
2015 Adam Moliver (B Level)
2016 David Marsh (B Level)
2017 Not contested
2018 Not contested

2019 Heather Hardy
2020 Heather Hardy
2021 Heather Hardy
2022 Mick Haytack
2023 Mick Owens

2023 REPORT June 17th & 18th (Manager: Arthur)

This year 8 players (3 from Ashby, 3 from Nottingham, and 2 from East Dorset) turned up in hot dry conditions on the Saturday to contest this event, which made Lawns 1 and 2 particularly tricky with many games going to time. Conditions were easier on the Sunday after heavy overnight rain.

An Egyptian scoring system was used to help determine a winner amongst those with an equal number of wins. This led to an interesting final round with three possible winners spread across three games. Two players emerged with 4 wins – Paul Durkin from Ashby, a new convert to AC but an experienced GC player, who played some very unconventional but effective croquet with excellent shooting and hoop running, and Mick Owens from Nottingham who was the eventual winner with a higher index than Paul having his only loss earlier in the competition.

Winner: Mick Owens (Nottingham)
Runner-up: Paul Durkin (Ashby)

Ashby AC 2023
Mick, Arthur and Paul

2022 REPORT June 18th & 19th (Manager: Arthur)

This year 6 players turned up in the drizzle on Saturday to contest this event, which made the lawns much easier to play than in the hard dry conditions that we had recently experienced, and as a consequence only one game went to time over the whole weekend.

An Egyptian scoring system was used to help determine a winner amongst those with an equal number of wins. This led to an interesting final round with two possible winners and three possible second places spread across the 3 games. Two players emerged with 4 wins – Gediminas Smolskas from Bury who played very neat croquet most of the time and earned a handicap reduction to 7, and Mick Haytack from the home club who was the eventual winner with a higher index than Ged, and having also won the only game that Ged had lost.

2021 REPORT June 19th & 20th (Manager: Arthur)

A good turnout of 12 players hailing from a wide swathe of the UK gathered to play this weekend with the threat of a washout hanging over us. Fortunately the rain came on Friday and overnight on Saturday and nobody got wet. The lawn conditions were easier than earlier in the week when the ground had been hard and dry, and in the end only about a third of the games went to time. Everyone won at least one game, although one player was unfortunate enough to lose 3 games -1T.

An Egyptian scoring system was used to help determine a winner amongst those with an equal number of wins – but this year that was not needed as Heather Hardy won all her games although two were very close affairs, with her +2 win against Mick Haytack deciding the overall outcome of the competition. Mick finished as runner-up with only this -2 loss to Heather.

2020 REPORT  June 13th & 14th (Manager: Arthur)

Heather retains her National Forest AC title

Six players contested this event in delightful summer weather at Ashby, in what was believed to be the first fixture in the CA calendar anywhere in the country to be completed this disrupted year.

Having just six players meant that we were within the current Covid-19 limit on gatherings, whilst being able to play the event as an all-play-all competition. The Egyptian scoring scheme was adopted to increase the likelihood of a discrete winner after 5 rounds. This was fortunate as 3 players finished with 4 wins, having all beaten each other! Heather Hardy emerged as the winner as she had lost her first game, so ended up with a higher index than Roger Watson and Arthur Rowe. The eagle-eyed will notice two players in the picture less than 2 metres apart – they were husband and wife Roger & Debbie Watson from Nottingham who had to play each other in the final round on Saturday.

4 wins: Heather Hardy, Roger Watson, Arthur Rowe
1 win: Richard Sanville, Debbie Watson, Mick Haytack

National Forest AC 2020
A socially-distanced National Forest AC tournament

2019 REPORT  June 15th & 16th (Manager: Arthur)

Heather Hardy wins the National Forest AC Handicap Singles Weekend

A small field of hardy players (excuse the pun) contested the National Forest AC Handicap Singles weekend, when they were subject to torrential downpours mixed with occasional sunshine. The field was comprised of players from Ashby and Huddersfield, and so the first two games felt like a team match rather than a singles competition. There was a mixture of excellent and so-so play from all players, and everyone won at least one game.

By the final game on Sunday, there were two players in the reckoning to win – Heather Hardy and Mick Haytack. Mick needed to beat Richard Sanville in the last game, and for Heather to lose to Rena Souten. Mick did his bit in an exciting finish after Richard had pegged off one ball, Mick then hitting in and making 3 hoops and a posthumous peel before winning +1. Heather was one ahead when time was called in her game, but Rena didn’t manage to make any more hoops and so Heather emerged as the winner. She also qualified for a Bronze award, completed her first two 26pt games, and finally earned a handicap reduction from 20 to 18.

2016 REPORT  June 18th & 19th (Manager: Arthur)

Eight players contested the National Forest AC Trophy over what turned out to be a fine interlude in the recent rainy weather in the Midlands. The rain returned just as the last game was finishing – one of a number of interesting endings, this one with penult & box v penult and box after time.

The Egyptian format didn’t produce any upsets this year, and David Marsh from Wrest Park emerged as the clear winner having won all his games. Arthur Rowe was runner-up.

Full results:

Ian Draper beat Mick Haytack +4
David Marsh beat Michael Finningan +26
Dave Gunn beat Tim King +19
Arthur  Rowe beat Graham Good +11
David Marsh beat Dave Gunn +10
Michael Finningan beat Tim King +7
Graham Good beat Mick Haytack +21
Arthur  Rowe beat Ian Draper +5
David Marsh beat Graham Good +18
Dave Gunn beat Mick Haytack +3
Arthur  Rowe beat Michael Finningan +24
Ian Draper beat Tim King +15(t)
David Marsh beat Ian Draper +15(t)
Dave Gunn beat Graham Good +1(t)
Michael Finningan beat Mick Haytack +4
David Marsh beat Mick Haytack +24
Ian Draper beat Graham Good +1(t)
Michael Finningan beat Dave Gunn +10

Winner: David Marsh    Runner-up: Arthur Rowe

2015 REPORT  June 13th & 14th (Manager: Arthur)

Eight players, including three from Ashby, contested the National Forest AC Trophy over a drizzly weekend at Moira.  The tournament was a B-Level event for the first time (AC handicap range 1 to 8). The event was run as an Egyptian and the games were not time limited, except in the final session to ensure a finish at tea time on Sunday. This produced a number of interesting endings with one or more balls pegged out. Adam Moliver, from Cheltenham, emerged as the clear winner. Adam lost only to home player Arthur Rowe who was runner-up.

Full results:

Adam Moliver beat Tim King +5
Sarah Melvin beat Mick Haytack +22
James Skelton beat Dave Gunn +3
Peter Thompson beat Arthur Rowe +7
Mick Haytack beat Tim King +19
Adam Moliver beat Sarah Melvin +15
Peter Thompson beat James Skelton +5
Arthur Rowe beat Mick Haytack +26
Dave Gunn beat Tim King +5
Arthur Rowe beat Sarah Melvin +9
Adam Moliver beat Mick Haytack +18
Adam Moliver beat Peter Thompson +3
Sarah Melvin beat James Skelton +1
Arthur Rowe beat Tim King +22
Adam Moliver beat Dave Gunn +17
Mick Haytack beat Peter Thompson +7
Sarah Melvin beat Tim King +16
James Skelton beat Mick Haytack +6
Peter Thompson beat Dave Gunn +17
Arthur Rowe beat Adam Moliver +3
Dave Gunn beat Sarah Melvin +1(t)
Peter Thompson beat Tim King +12(t)

Winner: Adam Moliver    Runner-up: Arthur Rowe

2013 REPORT   June 15th & 16th (Manager: Mick)

Ten players with handicaps ranging from 3 to 11 played in mostly glorious weather with the odd shower on Saturday. There were five Ashby players, one from each of Nottingham, Colchester and Hamptworth and two from Australia. The final set of matches paired Richard against Tim and Arthur against Bob with all four players having a chance of lifting the trophy. Richard used his bisques well to beat Tim in quick time, then had to watch anxiously as Arthur quickly went to peg with his first ball then broke down with his second.  Bob slowly clawed things back but Arthur eventually prevailed and Richard became the first Ashby player to win this event. Jenny Biggs once again provided first class catering and the handful of spectators managed to stay awake for most of the proceedings. Tim earned a handicap reduction to 3½.

1st      Richard Sanville        80% (beat Arthur, Peter, Ann and Tim)

2nd     Arthur Rowe            80% (beat Steve, Derek, Tim and Bob)

3rd     Tim King                 60% (beat Peter, Mick and Bob)

4th     Bob Thompson         60% (beat Richard, Derek and Mick)

5th     Mick Haytack           60% (beat Ann, Victor and Derek)

6th=   Ann Brookes            40% (beat Steve and Victor)

6th=   Derek Buxton           40% (beat Victor and Steve)

8th     Victor Stilwell           40% (beat Steve and Peter)

9th     Steve Thornton        20% (beat Peter)

10th    Peter Freer              20% (beat Ann)

2012 REPORT   June 16th & 17th (Manager: Mick)

Dave Gunn of Nottingham Croquet Club won our second annual National Forest AC handicap tournament at Moira, with Ashby’s Tim King finishing as runner-up.   Entry levels were down on last year with nine players, two of them able to play on only one day. Nevertheless, it was a very enjoyable tournament and for most of the time the weather was good. The catering supplied by Jenny Biggs was superb and was enjoyed by all. Special mention must go to Vic Stilwell of Hamptworth club who travelled all the way from Dorset and to Judith Moore (Nottingham) who was competing in her first proper AC tournament and managed a narrow win in her final game. Dave Gunn and Tim King both won their Silver award (twice) and Dave’s handicap came down from 10 to 9.   1st Dave Gunn (handicap 10) 80% 2nd Tim King (4) 60% (beat Mick) 3rd Mick Haytack (6) 60% 4th Arthur Rowe (3.5) 50% 5th Vic Stillwell (11) 40% (beat Richard) 6th Richard Sanville (9) 40% 7th Judith Moore (20) 25%   Derek Buxton (10) won his two games on Sunday and was the only player to beat Dave Gunn. Peter Dennis (5, Kenilworth) also played on Sunday.  

2011 REPORT   June 18th & 19th (Manager: Mick)

Ten players took part in our first-ever national CA tournament at Moira, won by Clive Goode of Nottingham Croquet Club. Derek Buxton of Ashby finished runner-up.

The weather was reasonable on Saturday with a few light showers, and excellent on Sunday.

Players: Rachel Rowe (3), Arthur Rowe (3.5), Peter Moore (5), Clive Goode (7), Mick Haytack (7), Barry Keen (9), Richard Sanville (9), Derek Buxton (10), Dave Gunn (10), Martin Wroughton (20).

This was Martin’s first attempt at AC and he stepped in at the last minute when one of the original entrants had to withdraw.

RESULTS (winners listed first):

DAY 1        
Peter +6T Dave Rachel +16 Peter Dave +4 Barry    
Arthur +9 Barry Clive +3 Derek Arthur +1 Mick    
Derek +11 Mick Dave +26 Arthur Clive +26 Rachel    
Rachel +10 Richard Richard +13 Martin Derek +17 Richard    
Clive +12T Martin Barry +13 Mick Peter +10 Martin    
DAY 2        
Clive +2 Rachel Derek +13 Dave      
Final: Clive +9 Derek    
3rd place play-off:  Rachel +13 Dave    
Other Day 2 results:        
Peter +13 Arthur Barry +23 Richard Mick +8 Richard    
Barry +24 Peter Richard +26 Arthur Mick +26 Peter    

Barry finished a clear 5th.The semi-final between Rachel and Clive was quite tense and at one point all four balls were for peg. Derek took an early lead in the final but Clive hit in, took his second ball round and ended the weekend unbeaten. His handicap came down to 6 from 7. The National Forest AC trophy was presented to Clive by the CA chairman Barry Keen.