Round 1 at Prospect Pétanque Club 6 August, 2017
The 2017/18 Interclub season got off to a tempestuous start. Literally. In the face of an ominous weather forecast, 57 brave souls turned up in their wet-weather gear ready to battle it out for their respective club. The fact that there were no late withdrawals or no-shows is, in itself, testament to the dedication and fortitude of this group.
Overnight rain had left the playing surface soft but mostly still playable and, fortunately, it cleared in time for the start of play. The cold wind was cutting, but at least we were lucky enough to get through the three preliminary games with minimal precipitation. Then, at lunch time, the storm hit.
Some of the braver ones ventured out to start their afternoon games in heavy rain, while the more cautious bided their time indoors. (Bravo to the two NGP teams who actually managed to complete their fourth game.) However, reports began to come in of numerous lightning strikes over the Adelaide area. Therefore, the conditions were deemed to be unsafe and play was called to a halt.
As the pistes disappeared one by one under pools of water, and the rain, wind and lightning showed no signs af abating, it soon became obvious that proceedings were finished for the day. It was decided that three out of five games constitutes a quorum, so medals and championship points were awarded, based on the results from the prelims. The early finish left all the footy fans free to get home in time to watch the Showdown (although, after what transpired on that front, some of the Port supporters may have preferred to be out playing pétanque in a storm).
Thanks to the Prospect club for hosting under difficult circumstances.
P.S. Many of the newer players were asking whether this has happened before. Meanwhile, the older heads were reminiscing about THAT day up at Stirling. For the record, this is the first time that play has been abandoned after three games. On April 21st, 2013, at the Adelaide Hills club, the conditions may have been a bit worse…
“The morning was punctuated by several periods of thick fog, at times reducing visibility to about 20 or 30 metres. Those who played will remember these brief periods with fondness, as they were about the only times that the persistent rain and icy-cold winds were simultaneously absent.”
…but at least there was no lightning. On that occasion, 18 teams (of the 22 that had registered) soldiered on to the completion of the fourth game.