Several Gauteng country clubs are talking Padel, to take advantage of this fast-growing sport. Irene Country Club are in step. Right next to the first tee, possibly too close, are four Padel courts, installed in the past month, with floodlighting. I hear they cost about a million rand a court. And there are new Padel courts at Ruimsig CC and Pretoria CC. Irene is a bustling multi-sport club offering golf, cricket, bowls and tennis, so it’s a shrewd move. The deck outside the clubhouse is a hive of activity well into the night long after the golfers have left. Irene’s course is in good shape, and the club have a new young greenkeeper in JP Cooper, son of Pieter Cooper who does a wonderful job maintaining Wingate Park nearby. The 18 holes of this scenic layout were revamped by Phil Jacobs some years ago and his greens are an interesting subtle mix of shapes and slopes. There’s a project afoot to rebuild and enlarge all the tees.