Date: July 18, 2013
Author: Christian Puccini / Golf SA

Sir Donald Bradman – �The Kooyonga Pennant Golfer�

As England and Australia begin their latest clash for the Ashes at Nottingham&aposs Trent Bridge ground and with Kooyonga winning the Simpson Cup last weekend, it prompted the Golf SA office to look into the archives to research Sir Donald Bradman The Golfer . It’s part of Australian folklore, that as a teenager a young Bradman honed his reflexes and developed his hand eye co-ordination by hitting a golf ball with a stump into the brick base of the family water tank. What s not widely known is that Bradman became a very capable golfer who played at his best off scratch. Sir Donald and Lady Bradman, both of whom had been champions of Mount Osmond Golf Club, joined Kooyonga shortly after Sir Don led the &aposInvincibles&apos in 1948 on an unbeaten tour of England. In 1951 aged 42, Bradman soon demonstrated his ability on a sand course and won a place in the Kooyonga Simpson Cup team, winning 4 from 6 matches in his first season. In 1952, Bradman had a stellar season winning 5 matches from 6 and was part of Kooyonga s winning Simpson Cup team. Bradman accepted offers from the Daily Mail to travel with, and write about, the 1953 Australian team in England resulting in him fronting for Kooyonga on only two occasions in what was another premiership season. He recorded one win from his two matches. Bradman retired from his stockbroking business in June 1954, depending on the “comfortable” income earned as a board member of 16 publicly listed companies. In that season, when Kooyonga won its third title in a row, Bradman, played only one match, recording a loss. In 1955 in his fifth straight season of Simpson Cup, Sir Don lost all four of his matches. During this period Bradman was a committee member of the SACA, and aside from two years in the early 1950s, he filled a selector&aposs berth for the Test team between 1936 and 1971. In 1958, Sir Donald played B Pennant and won all his matches. Sir Don next fronted for the Kooyonga Simpson Cup team in 1962, winning four from seven, in what was another premiership season. In 1963 he won twice and squared another from six matches and in his final season of Simpson Cup in 1965, aged 56 years old he lost his only match. All in all, Sir Don played 8 seasons of SAGA Simpson Cup, recording 16 wins, one square and 16 losses. Whilst his career Test batting average was a remarkable 99.94, he recorded a more human 50% win/loss ratio in Simpson Cup. Bradman who passed on 25 February 2001 (aged 92) was a regular sight at Kooyonga until his late 80s – and even then was a fierce competitor. Sir Donald Bradman s Simpson Cup Record 1951 – 4/6 1952 – 5/6 premiers 1953 – 1/2 premiers 1954 – 0/1 premiers 1955 – 0/4 1962 – 4/7 premiers 1963 – 2/6 (including 1 sq) 1965 – 0/1 Kooyonga s First Eleven: ref. Kooyonga – The Story of a Golf Club (V.M. Branson) Bradman, D. G. (Captain) Richardson, V. Y. (Vice-Captain) Nitschke, H. C. Rymill, J. W. Lee, P. K. Ridings, P. L. Stanford, R. M. Tobin, B. J. Wall, T. W. Grimmett, C. V. Wilkin, J. S. Gunn, L. T. (Twelfth man)