Friday, August 12, 2016

Scots finish third in Home Internationals by beating Wales 8-7

Ireland win title for third year in a row but it 

went down to last putt on last green

By ED HODGE, Press and Media Officer
Ireland claimed a thrilling Fairstone Men’s Home Internationals at The Nairn Golf Club, edging out England in their winner-takes-all tussle after the final putt on the final green for their third successive title.
After a superb three day’s golf over the stunning Highland links, the annual four-team home nations came down to the final match on the course, contested between Ireland’s Colm Campbell and Adam Chapman from England.
Irish Amateur champion Campbell won the opening five holes of their singles joust, but Carus Green’s Chapman staged a stirring comeback that saw him pull level with a 15 feet birdie putt on 17 to set up a tense, grandstand finish. 
With the overall score at 7 –7, and England needing just a halved point to lift the Raymond Trophy on the basis of matches won throughout the week, Campbell knew he had to win the last hole for an historic Irish hat-trick of Men’s Home Internationals crowns.
The Warrenpoint player duly delivered, making birdie after his two-and-a-half feet putt was generously conceded, while Chapman could only make par after finding the greenside bunker with his approach to the par-5. 
Campbell was mobbed by his jubilant team-mates on the 18th after Ireland came back from a 3 – 2 foursomes deficit to claim the title, notably winning the final three matches when they trailed 7 – 5.
Campbell, 29, said: “That’s as nervous as I’ve been on a golf course. I knew the point was required, knew what was on the line and we were trying to make a wee bit of history as well, winning three in a row for the first time. 
"It wasn’t good for the heart, I can tell you. I’ve been a part of the last three so that is even sweeter again. As an amateur, this is definitely as good as anything I’ve done so far.
“I was five up through five, got off to a blistering start, but Adam came back at me. I made a bad bogey on 16, so that it was back to one, then he holed a lovely putt on 17 and we’re all square. I then probably hit one of the best tee shots of my life down 18 knowing we needed to win. I was lucky to be able to make two nice swings and have a straightforward chip and putt.”

> Watch final day highlights and player interviews on our Facebook page

Nigel Edwards, Performance Director at England Golf, added: “That was extremely gutting, disappointing. I’m proud of the way the whole team played. It was a tough week weather-wise, but there were a lot of good shots, attitude and effort. You could see on the 18th how disappointed they were.
“Ireland came out strong this afternoon in the singles and we gave ourselves a lot to do, but the players battled so, so well coming down the closing holes. It was an excellent contest and it’s come down to one putt. That’s what the championship wants. I’m sure it’ll make our players stronger, wiser and better players.”
Meantime, hosts Scotland dug deep to secure a narrow victory over Wales, also winning 8 – 7, to achieve third place overall.
After Matthew Clark and George Duncan battled to a halved match with Llewellyn Matthews and Zach Galliford to ensure the morning foursomes were shared, the hosts edged the singles. 
Liam Johnston and Graeme Robertson secured key one-hole wins, but it was home member Sandy Scott’s 6 and 4 win over Ben Chamberlain that proved equally as vital, with the local members cheering him on.
Lee Jones and Patrick Mullins responded with victories for Wales, but Scotland’s experienced bottom order saw them home as Barry Hume and Matt Clark sealed 3 and 2 victories respectively.
Scott, a European Amateur Team winner with Scotland in July and now set to begin a college career in Texas in the US, said: “A singles win was what I wanted after two losses to start with. I played a lot better in the afternoon and it was great to have the local support.
“I’m much more pleased with my game, I was struggling a bit coming into the week but I’ve been hitting the ball a lot better.”
Englishman Ashton Turner from Kenwick Park was named the Fairstone Player of the Championship, having won the most points for an individual player in the event.

> View final day scores from the Fairstone Men’s Home Internationals at Nairn.

The Men’s Home Internationals were sponsored by the Fairstone Group, one of the UK’s largest chartered financial planning firms, with support from The R&A. Thanks also to our wonderful host venue, The Nairn Golf Club.



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