McManus’s raft of errors rubs Florence up the wrong way

McManus prepares to mess things up

PUTTER problems plagued Oliver Florence just moments before an important tournament after poor workmanship from a self-proclaimed experienced adhesive worker.

Florence was all ready to use his new NIFO Ryner in the British Matchplay Championships at Bluewater but was forced to switch back to his FunSports after discovering the rubber had come away from the club head.

He had entrusted the job of gluing the rubber to the putter to work colleague Paul McManus after the Irishman had insisted he had wide experience of fixing rubber to metal with a variety of epoxy resins.

But a failure to use enough of the substance – bought specially from the Guildford branch of B&Q – cast doubt on McManus’s claims and threw Florence in to disarray just hours before one of the most eagerly anticipated contests on the minigolf circuit.

“I had practised with my new implement two days before the tournament and felt really good,” Florence explained. “But as I was packing my equipment early on Sunday for the long trip round the M25, I was horrified to discover that the rubber had come clean off.

“It really hit me hard and was far from ideal preparation ahead of my opening fixture.

“I’m not using it as an excuse for my shaky start but going back to my old club didn’t help and I never really recovered from defeat in my first match.”

Alex Pragnell helps with the second round draw

McManus carried out the flawed operation during a break from constructing the Surrey Advertiser’s entry in the Guildford Raft Race.

He stretched the raft building exercise out for days and even felt the need to use his holiday time to complete the painfully-slow project.

“Some people wondered what he was doing out there all that time,” Florence said. “Well he certainly wasn’t doing a good job on the putter that’s for sure.”

McManus declined to answer specific questions about his failure but did issue a statement.

The statement had been lost as the Mini Golfer went to press.

On the course, following an opening defeat to David Donnelly by one hole, Florence was able to bring out his new weapon after gluing it properly in the car.

The final score in the final match

He went on to lose narrowly in the group stage to Marc Chapman 2&1 and Nick Sandqvist – who provided Florence with the rubber – by two holes.

He then beat Donnelly by one hole in the competition for those eliminated from the groups but lost by two holes to Kevin Moseley – the Bath-based man fuelled by an 11.30am curry, the earliest he had ever eaten.

The final match saw Florence clinch 19th spot with a triumph over Alex Pragnell – who famously came last by 33 shots using a rubberless putter at the World Adventure Golf Masters in Hastings earlier in the season.

Despite a two hole reverse and never being ahead in the match, Pragnell later claimed he was ‘unlucky’ not to win.

Next up for Florence is the Midlands Open at Dorridge on Saturday, before teaming up with Richard Skeggs as team Wilson in the British Doubles Championship at the same course on Sunday.

3 responses to this post.

  1. Great blog post 🙂

    Change of Putter eh? Did you buy it to ‘Keep up with the Joneses’ so to speak 😉


  2. Perfect Par is still clearly smarting following the defeat … sparks could well and truly fly on Saturday if you do the double and beat him again in the MO!!!


  3. Posted by minigolfollie on July 29, 2011 at 7:04 am

    The rivalry is definitely hotting up!

    Yes, Squire. I’ll be using a golf ball with a football design on it next.


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