Friday, May 13, 2011


The GB and Ireland Walker Cup practice squad at Balgownie. Back row (left to right): Rhys Enoch, Darren Wright, Kris Nicol, Jack Senior Nigel Edwards (team captain), Steven Brown, Alan Dunbar, Rhys Pugh, Kevin Phelan, Tom Lewis.
Front row (left to right): Paul Cutler, Ross Kellett, Oliver Farr, David Law, Stiggy Hodgson, Tyrrell Harron, Dermot McElroy.
The image is by courtesy of David Cannon (Getty Images). Click on it to enlarge the faces.

Motherwell's Ross Kellett will have done his GB and I Walker Cup team selection prospects no harm at all by finishing second to the leading points earner, Ireland's Alan Dunbar, at the end of the three-day squad practice match over Royal Aberdeen's Balgownie links, the venue for the 43rd match against the Americans on September 10-11.

There were 16pt at stake individually over two sessions of foursomes and two of singles' play, with points awarded for front-nine and back-nine positions as well as 18-hole results.
Rathmore GC member Dunbar, 21, winner of the St Andrews Links Trophy in 2009 and the Irish open amateur stroke-play in 2010, finished at the top of the 16-man points table, capping his three-day performance by taking 4pt out of four in a 2 and 1 win over Tom Lewis, the British boys champion of 2009, in the final session of singles this morning.
Colville Park's Kellett, pictured below by Cal Carson Golf Agency,  finished second with 11 1/2 pt out of 16.
He "lost" the first nine holes to the big-hitting Steven Brown (Wentworth) but Kellett won the second nine holes by two holes and the match by one hole to earn 3pt. Having missed the 18th green wide right, Kellett played an exquisite pitch to the elevated green and holed the putt for a par 4 to clinch his win.
Dermot McElroy (Ballymena) finished third with 11pt.
Kris Nicol (Fraserburgh) finished up pointless from his final match against Tyrell Hatton (Harleyford), losing by 5 and 4 after trailing over the first nine and the second nine holes. The Buchan man was unable, therefore, to add to his overnight points total of seven.
Hazlehead's David Law, playing over the course where he won the 2009 Scottish boys championship, lost his final singles by one hole to North Florida University student Kevin Phelan from Waterford, Ireland.
It was a close contest throughout with the Aberdonian one down for the first nine holes but all square over the inward nine.
Walker Cup skipper Nigel Edwards, who played in four successive Walker Cup matches between 2001 and 2007, expressed himself "well satisfied" with the practice match. The preparation will include another three-day session over the Royal Aberdeen Links from July 19 to 21. The team of 10 will be named in August.
Scottish champion Michael Stewart (Troon Welbeck), US college student James Byrne (Banchory) and Andy Sullivan (Nuneaton) were three of the big names who missed this week's practice match. Leading performances in the forthcoming St Andrews Links Trophy, Brabazon Trophy and British amateur championship will have a bearing on the selectors' final thoughts.
+David Law and Kris Nicol left the Royal Aberdeen clubhouse immediately after lunch as did Ross Kellett and set off on the long haul to Ayrshire, hoping to squeeze in an early evening practice round at Prestwick where all three are competing - Kellett for Lanarkshire, and Law and Nicol for defending champions North-east - in the Scottish area team championship stroke-play qualifying round on Saturday. The four area teams with the lowest aggregates will contest Sunday's match-play stages.


Royal Aberdeen GC
Day 3
First nine holes
A Dunbar (Rathmore) bt T Lewis (Welwyn Garden City) 3 and 1.
R Pugh (Vale of Glamorgan) bt S Hodgson (Sunningdale) 2 and 1.
J Senior (Heysham) bt O Farr (Ludlow) 2 and 1.
K Phelan (Waterford) bt D Law (Hazlehead) 1 hole.
D Wright (Rowland Castle) halved with P Cutler (Portstewart).
T Hatton (Harleyford) bt K Nicol (Fraserburgh) 2 and 1.
R Enoch (Truro) halved with D McElroy (Ballymena).
S Brown (Wentworth) bt R Kellett (Colville Park) 1 hole.
Second nine holes
Dunbar bt Lewis 1 hole.
Pugh bt Hodgson 1 hole.
Senior bt Farr 3 and 1.
Phelan halved with Law.
Wright bt Cutler 1 hole.
Hatton bt Nicol 2 and 1.
McElroy bt Enoch 1 hole.
Kellett bt Brown 2 holes.
18-hole results
Dunbar bt Lewis 2 and 1.
Pugh bt Hodgson 3 and 2.
Senior bt Farr 3 and 2.
Phelan bt Law 1 hole.
Wright bt Cutler 1 hole.
Hatton bt Nicol 5 and 4.
McElroy bt Enoch 1 hole.
Kellett bt Brown 1 hole.

Maximum 16pt
12 1/2 A Dunbar.
11 1/2 R Kellett.
11 D McElroy
9 S Brown, J Senior.
8 1/2 S Hodgson.
8 D Wright, T Lewis, R Pugh, O Farr.
7 1/2 R Enoch
7 K Phelan, K Nicol.
6 1/2 P Cutler.
5 1/2 D Law
5 T Hatton


Tickets are now on sale for the 43rd Walker Cup Match at Royal Aberdeen Golf Club on Saturday-Sunday, September 10-11.
Daily tickets cost £25 for adults and £10 for juveniles aged 16 or under.
On each of the two days of competition, there will be four morning foursomes matches, followed by afternoon singles. On the Saturday, there will be eight singles matches, while on Sunday, all 10 players from each team will go head-to-head in afternoon.
“The Walker Cup has witnessed some of golf’s greatest champions in the early stages of their careers, and this year’s contest is sure to be no different,” said Peter Dawson, Chief Executive of The R and A.
“With spectators coursing down the fairways and the world’s elite amateurs just feet away, the Walker Cup creates an atmosphere unlike any other golf event.”
Grandstands will be erected, offering spectators the best views of the action, and catering facilities will be available.
Tickets are available at, or by calling The R and A Ticket Office on +44 (0) 1334 460000.



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