Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Edinburgh Summer League Final at Turnhouse

Tait the hero as Burgess are victors in battle Royal

Brian Tait, playing in only his second match of the campaign due to an injury, was the hero as Royal Burgess pipped courageous Kingsknowe to retain the Edinburgh Summer Golf League.
In match of unbelievable tension and drama, the Barnton boys held on to their crown for another 12 months after Tait secured the all-important victory in the final at Turnhouse.
On a day when conditions were difficult due to a strong wind and a dry course, Scotland captain Scott Knowles drew first blood for Kingsknowe with a 2 and 1 victory over Sandy Gray.
In a match everyone was looking forward to, former Scottish boys' champion Stephen Buckley went three up on Allyn Dick, the Kingsknowe kingpin, after seven holes. Dispatch Trophy winner Dick won the eighth and then birdied the 11th to get back to one down.
He squared the match at the 15th before a mistake by Buckley at the next, where he went through the green with his approach, saw Dick go in front and he held on thanks to halves at the last two holes.
John Yuille put the first point on the board for Royal Burgess, the son of the club's former pro producing a rock-solid performance – he was level-par for the holes played – in beating Steve McCulloch by 5 and 4.
Fraser McCluskey, after going two up after four, was just as steady in beating Mike Foley by 3 and 2 while John Fraser ensured he headed off to Ireland with the Scottish Seniors' team in good heart after a great display of match-play golf against young Andy Rowe.
Fraser was two up after six and did not hit a loose shot all day, finishing level par for the holes played as he won 4 and 3 to make it 3-2 for Royal Burgess.
When Ian Taylor returned to form with a vengeance in crushing Gary Malone by 6 and 5, Richard Hughes' Royal Burgess side needed only one more point to retain the trophy.
At that stage, however, they we were one down with two to play in match No.7 and two down with three to play in the bottom two matches, so it appeared to be swinging Kingsknowe's way.
Graham Fraser beat Grant Pollock, who was playing despite a bad ankle injury which ruled him out of the semi-final, by one hole, and Paul Page was also on course to chalk up a point for Bill Buchan's boys when he came to the 16th with a two-hole lead over Tait.
Having only recently recovered from a torn calf muscle, Tait won the 16th after Page's tee shot found trees before they halved the 17th in birdies.
Both missed the green in two at the 18th. Page pitched on to 20 feet and Tait had a very difficult bunker shot with little green to play with. In the circumstances, he produced a shot out of the top drawer in stopping it two feet from the hole. Page missed and Tait holed to give Royal Burgess 4½ points.
But, after Charlie Kivlin beat Doug Ross by two holes shortly afterwards, Kingsknowe also reached that mark which, under League rules, meant the halved match had to play sudden-death to decide the tie.
Tait holed from four feet to stay alive after racing his first putt past the hole at the 19th before the two of them went for the green at the next, a short par-4. Tait was pin high right of the green and Page hit a fantastic tee shot that almost hit the pin but ran through the back of the green.
Page pitched to 18 feet and then saw his birdie attempt sit on the edge of the hole. From 10 feet, and with the green surrounded by spectators and players, Tait rolled his birdie putt right in the middle of the cup to retain the trophy for the Royal Burgess.
"I've said it all along," beamed Hughes. "My team are fighters and are never beaten whilst there is still a shot to be played. Every player at some point over the season has stood up and been counted – a great team effort!"
A disappointed Buchan said: "It was a game where we looked like losing comfortably, then looked like winning, before ultimately being pipped at the post. Whilst we congratulate Royal Burgess on their fabulous success, we can only look back and think that, with a decent rub of the green, we might have been celebrating ourselves. That's golf, though, and we will be back."



Post a Comment

<< Home

Copyright © Colin Farquharson

If you can't find what you are looking for.... please check the Archive List or search this site with Google