2022-2023 InterClub Competition Round 2 – Eastern Suburbs Petanque Club – 18th September 2022

Round 2 of the SAPL Interclub series was played in wet and windy conditions. After a seemingly charmed life spanning the last couple of years, our luck with the weather had to run out sooner or later. It could have been worse, though, as the rain only came in relatively small doses on the day. Nevertheless, the playing surface was thoroughly waterlogged from much more substantial falls in the preceding days.
Two lanes were deemed unfit for play due to lakes of standing water, which meant all of the remaining 14 lanes had to be used to accommodate the 28 teams in attendance. It’s not uncommon for a club’s most popular lanes to be the ones where water collects, because they are the most heavily used. In this instance, losing the formidable ‘Presidential Piste’ was a blow to the host club, ESP, as it somewhat reduced their home ground advantage.
There was also speculation that the weather may have influenced the results in another way. One of the seven clubs gets considerably more practice than the others at playing in cold, wet and soggy conditions. During winter, it’s simply business as usual up at Stirling. Was it just coincidence, then, that this turned out to be an exceptionally good round for the Adelaide Hills club?
Leading the charge for the AHPC was the established trio of Mike Read, Peter Davies & Brian Tuckfield .The only undefeated team on the day, their gold medals were a first for Mike and Pete. Also on the podium for Adelaide Hills, in the bronze medal position, were Quentin Jones, Ross Coleman & Dirk Seret, playing together as a team for the first time. The silver medals went to another new combination, Justin Smith, Giselle Whiteaker & Jean-Luc Gonnet, from Novar Gardens. Justin picked up his first League medal and Giselle also recorded her best result so far in this competition. Congratulations to all the medal-winners.
In terms of the premiership ladder, this round gave things a good shake-up. Nearly every club finished in a position different to where they stood after Round 1. Eastern Suburbs were the exception, doing just enough to hold on to top spot. The big mover was Adelaide Hills, of course, climbing up to second and now sitting just three points adrift of the lead. Novar Gardens also got a good haul of points and improved their position – not quite enough to catch third-placed Prospect, but, in terms of championship points, they are now closer to first than to fifth. This season is shaping up to be just as competitive, dynamic and exciting as the last one.
Thanks to the umpires and to ESP and their volunteers for hosting the event.

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