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History revisited


DAVID Smail would probably prefer not to remember it.

Peter Hakiwai will never forget it.

About 30 years ago, Hakiwai stunned Smail in an interprovincial matchplay golf clash between Poverty Bay-East Coast and a star-studded Waikato side featuring the likes of Phil Tataurangi and Steve Alker.

Smail went on to become a professional, winning the New Zealand Open and five titles on the Japan tour, and ranking in the top 100 in the world.

He also had a son, and on Day 3 of the Toro National Interprovincial in Hastings, Hakiwai played his part in a near re-creation of that upset victory.

Hakiwai is caddying for PBEC rep William Brown at the week-long matchplay tournament on the pristine Bridge Pa course.

Yesterday, Brown took on Waikato No.1 Charlie Smail — the son of David Smail.

Charlie, the 2018 New Zealand amateur champion, plans to follow in his dad’s career footsteps . . . which made Brown’s half against him in the 4-1 loss to Waikato that much more impressive.

PBEC suffered their fourth consecutive team defeat yesterday to be sitting at the bottom of Auckland-led Section 2.

They lost to Waikato in the morning, then went down 4½-½ to Wellington in the afternoon, with Brown saving the whitewash.

The Poverty Bay Golf Club greenkeeper showed great character and skill under pressure in both his matches.

Against Smail, Brown nearly drove the 18th green (the ninth hole as they started on 10). He up-and-downed to make birdie to win the hole and halve the match.

Brown also won the last hole (the 18th) to grab a share of the honours in his afternoon clash against Wellington No.2 Thomas Woods.

This time he left it to his opponent to hand him the hole by hitting his approach shot out of bounds.

“Willie’s form was exceptional,” said Hakiwai, who was a member of Bridge Pa back in the ’70s.

“Except for a couple of wayward drives and a bit of bad luck, he probably should have won both games.”

Peter Kerekere provided the other half point for PBEC in his clash with Waikato No.2 Tane Robson.

While on paper it looks a convincing team win to Waikato, it was far from it.

Three of the matches went to the 18th, PBEC No.4 Andrew Higham losing 1-down in what could have been a pivotal clash.

Neil Hansen made his national interprovincial debut at No.5 for PBEC against Waikato. He lost 3 and 2 while No.3 Hukanui Brown was beaten 5 and 4.

Pete Anderson, who did not play in the morning, came back at No.1 for the Wellington tie. He lost 5 and 4 to New Zealand representative and NZ Golf high-performance squad member Kerry Mountcastle, the son of former PBEC player Paul Mountcastle.

Kerekere, at No.3, lost 4 and 2, No.4 Higham 4 and 3, and No.5 Hansen 4 and 3.

There is only round of play today. PBEC faced Otago this morning.

Meanwhile, Hakiwai did tell Charlie Smail about his famous win against his dad.

“I said to him, he (David) might not remember it . . . but I do.”

HISTORY ALMOST REPEATED: William Brown, left, yesterday halved his match against Waikato No.1 Charlie Smail in a near re-creation of the upset win that Brown’s caddie, Peter Hakiwai, secured about 30 years ago against Smail’s father, David. File picture by Paul Rickard