Twelve months ago, it was an emotional lady club champion Judy Langford of Yarrawonga Mulwala Golf Club Resort. At presentation night, there wasn’t a dry eye in the room.
A few months beforehand, Judy had survived an awful road crash and golf was the furthest thing on her mind for many weeks.
But a few months on and she played in the 2016 club championships, winning an epic battle with long time friend Judy Kruger. This year, Judy again claimed the club’s highest individual trophy title to make it three in a row.
Overall, since 1997, she has been A Grade Champion nine times, second to current captain Karen Droop who has her name on the big trophy 13 times.
It was another standing ovation last Wednesday as the popular Judy made her way to the stage, with the other 84 ladies at the presentation dinner raising their glasses and singing ‘For She’s A Jolly Good Lassie’.
Judy had just got home, winning by one shot, 158 gross to Georgia Macklin’s 159 who said she thoroughly enjoyed Judy’s company and encouragement. Birthday girl Georgia, who was club champion in 2014, turned 22-years-of-age last Sunday.
“I’m a lot less emotional than last year,” 55-year-old registered nurse Judy with Murray Valley Private Hospital in Wodonga told the big Willow Room audience.
“Thank you Georgia for your kind words. It was played in good spirits. It really only came down to the putting. I putted a little better than you - that’s golf.”
As usual, Judy called into Mulwala Water Ski Club after golf to see her parents Lorna and Alan Zotti on the Wednesday - which last week just happened to be the last round of the club championships - and asked what she should say at presentation time.
‘Just say it was a great day and it’s a great club’, was her Mum’s response. Judy, in her winner’s speech, then emphasised: “It is a fantastic club.” Continuing, Judy said: “Wodonga and Yarrawonga played off in the Pennant Final. As much as I wanted Wodonga to win - they really needed something to be excited about - if we had to lose, I’m glad it was to Yarrawonga.
“Having been a member for 20 years at Yarrawonga, I’ll never leave Yarrawonga. Everything that Yarrawonga does is amazing. It is the greatest club and I’m so proud to be club champion.”
For the record, Judy is also a five-time Wodonga club champion and her proud Mum a record 13-time Cobram/Barooga club champion.
Heather Giblett was delighted to win the special Gwen Palframan Trophy. “I’ve been lucky enough to win it once before,” she said. “It’s a prestigious event bringing everyone back to an even event.”
The years sneak up, as evidenced with some speeches. “I’m a pensioner now!” vets 60-69 nett winner Anna Castles exclaimed. “We were talking about 1992 and suddenly realised Georgia wasn’t even born then!” still a real star golfer Judy Kruger said. When Kaye Reeves claimed a trophy and said the meal was fantastic, she uttered: “That’s one of the advantages for being over 70!”
Lady Captain Karen Droop delivered a masterful performance behind the microphone at the presentation dinner. “We are so privileged to have a great course,” Karen, in her third and final year as captain, told the ladies.
“I congratulate everyone who played in the club championships. It’s great to see you all here and enjoying the festivities and remembering those no longer with us but here in spirit.”
Earlier, Anna Castles was quite emotional when she received some trophies and mentioned the late Alison Collins with whom so many had so many fond memories of a wonderful lady. Mary Hidson was also fondly referred to.
Many trophy recipients praised the ladies committee on their superb organisation of the event. “I thank the ladies committee for doing a magnificent job. It’s been a great atmosphere, great camaraderie ,” first year lady president Mary Hockley told the Yarrawonga Chronicle.
“The three-day club championship had to become a two-day championship because the greens were unplayable on the scheduled second day because of the heavy rain last Friday. The support from the club for our club championships was fantastic.”