SA President’s Doubles

The fourth edition of the SA President’s Gateball Doubles competition saw a couple of innovations this year.  The first of these was that I was responsible for organising the tournament for the first time, which was an interesting, and ultimately rewarding experience, if somewhat nerve shredding along the way with the ever changing border restrictions – the number of pairs for the tournament varied from 4 to 9 in the lead up, and ultimately settled at 6, which allowed us to run 2 courts and hold a round-robin tournament. 

Saturday morning opened to glorious Gateball weather, and the pre-tournament favourites did not disappoint with Barry and Karen on 4 wins and Philip and Ben on 3 wins but superior net gates going into the final game


Philip and Ben prevailed and Philip’s name will adorn the trophy for the third time.

An honourable mention goes to Ros and Keith who travelled the furthest and beat the winners and lost narrowly on a shoot out to the runners up, to finish in third place – a terrific result.

On Sunday, we held our first SA State teams event.  With only two teams, and a couple of players unable to compete, we ended up with two teams of 5.


The first team was the “Shanghai 6” comprising Barry J, Geoff, Peter M, Ros, and Trish.  The members of this select group have all competed in the “Jinxi Cup”, held just outside Shanghai.  The remaining players – Ben, David, Karen, Keith and Philip – formed the “Australia 6” team, with 3 states represented.

To add a bit of variety, and also to take advantage of a development opportunity, each game was played with a different captain.  Captains were matched in terms of experience and the two most experienced captains on each team were banned from providing in-game advice.

The Shanghai 6 team stormed to a 3-0 lead, but the Australians fought back, to result in a 3-2 win for the Shanghai 6.

All games were played with great sportsmanship, in particular the team games that were not refereed (although we did have the unusual luxury of four Level 1 referees playing).

A big thank you to all our competitors but particularly our interstate competitors – Philip, Ros and Keith for making the trip, and also to Roger and David for marking the courts, and Lyn for presenting the trophy.

Geoff Crook
Woodville Croquet Club


Tavender Trophy Report – Canberra Croquet Club

It was a fitting result to have our two newest gateball recruits share Runners Up and Winning positions in the Sunday November 21 Tavender Trophy Annual High/Low Doubles event.

Margaret Richardson and Glen Whitehead gave a very clinical display of skill and strategy to win the final 19 points to 9 over Ralph Richardson and Judy Tier. With Glen’s accurate bombards the opposing team quickly realised it was pretty difficult to score points with their few white balls on the court.

30 to 50 millimetres of rain and storms were forecast for the weekend and a postponement loomed. Fortunately this weather moved north and with 3 courts in play we completed our games in a morning of dry and cloudy conditions.

Thank you Susie Linge and Gabby Walsh for so masterly managing scoreboards and Peter Tavender, the trophy donor, for presenting the trophy to the winners.

Results can be viewed here

Judy Tier, Canberra Croquet Club

Winners: Margaret Richardson and Glen Whitehead with Calvin & Liam and Peter Tavender

Runners Up: Ralph Richardson and Judy Tier

Caloundra’s Masters and Apprentices Gateball Teams and Doubles Competition

 The Weather Gods were kind to Caloundra Mallets Sports Club, for their annual Sunshine Coast Masters and Apprentices Tournament on 13th to 15th November. After a week of rain, with nervous organisers studying the forecast each day, the skies cleared on Friday afternoon, and we enjoyed 3 days of fine, sunny weather.

It was a very full program, with 12 teams, totalling 70 players, converging on Caloundra from as far away as the Gold Coast, Toowoomba and Rockhampton. With 17 rounds to be played over the 4 courts, it was an early 8am start each day. Competition was close, with 3 teams finishing on 8 wins, so placings were decided by net hoops scored. Rockhampton successfully defended their 2020 win, with Bribie Island second and F6 from Moreton Bay third. 

Rockhampton, receiving 1st prize from Caloundra’s President, Sue Dixon

14 doubles teams stayed for the doubles event on Sunday afternoon and Monday. Because of numbers, this event was played in 2 blocks. Leaders of each block played second place in the other, for a place in the finals. Interestingly, it was the second place getters in each block who played off for 1st place, with the event going to Bruce McAlister from Ipswich and Peter Sweet from Southport. They also won in 2020. Second place went to Robert Nicholson and Kathie Grant from Southport. In the game played for 3rd place, Steve and Cheryl Kele from Rockhampton finished ahead of Robert Roose and Richard Bevan from Eildon. 

Doubles winners, Peter Sweet and Bruce McAlister 

We are so lucky to be able to get together for these days, and even though the competition can be intense at times, the fun and friendship enjoyed by all make up for the weary minds and bodies at the end of the events.

Written by Robyn Brown, Caloundra Mallet Sports Gateball Captain.

Another Gateball Brainteaser

Geoff Crook from South Australia has sent us another conundrum from a recent game at Woodville. Please put your answers and comments in the ‘Leave a Reply’ box below.

The last 3 minutes

After a gap of at least 12 months, Woodville hosted a Sunday afternoon of Gateball on 7 November 2021.  The last game of the day was pretty unusual, with Red storming to a 15-1 lead after 12 minutes, and White’s solitary ball in play was an out-ball [Ball 6].

However, White fought back and the result was the position below – 5 points behind with a couple of minutes left.

Ball 10 is to play, and assume Ball 6 plays last. 

Can White win?  Please explain the sequence of play leading to your answer.