Saturday, September 09, 2017

GolfKings Scottish area team championship at Newmachar

'Fantastic' North-east team beat title-holders

Lanarkshire - now for Lothians in  the final !

North-east team captain Mike Pocock (left) and NE District secretary George Young. Two   happy men. Picture by Cal Carson Golf Agency.

It's Lothians versus North-east in Sunday's final of the GolfKings Scottish men's area team championship final at a rather sodden Newmachar Golf Club Hawkshill course near Aberdeen.
Play was suspended because of the rain for the best part of an hour late in the afternoon but it could not dampen the spirits of home favourites North-east who beat last year's champions, Lanarkshire, 4-1 in the second semi-final and thus avenged a defeat by Willie Sharpe's squad at the same stage of last year's six-man team tournament at Dalmahoy.
Lothians, the leading qualifiers for the match-play stages by a country mile, have continued to make progress although not quite so impressive as they were in the 36-hole stroke play opener.
After accounting for North, the eighth qualifiers 3-2, Lothians beat Renfrewshire 3-2 in the first semi-final and have high hopes of winning the title for a 14th time but their first since 2007.
Said North-east team captain Mike Pocock: "That was a fantastic performance to beat the title-holders this afternoon by a 4-1 margin.
We have got a great blend of youth and experience in our line-up and they are getting better with each round.
"North-east have not won the title since 2010 but I am confident we can end the lean years in Sunday's final."
Said Lothians president  Paul Gibson:
"After being the leading qualifiers we had to start afresh with the match-play and  we have come through two hard games to reach the final and I hope we can continue in good form.
We lost in the final at Dalmahoy last year so I am hoping for a different outcome this Sunday."
Earlier in the day, in the quarter-finals, North-east KO'd the No 2 seeds, Glasgow, while Lothians beat North 3-2.
The final will tee off at 8am but as far as the format is concerned, much will depend on the weather forecast - Hawkshill is well drained these days but there is only so much excess water any course can stand.
Normally the area team final is three foursomes in the morning and six singles in the afternoon. But the threat of more rain could make tournament director Conor Finlay stick with the one foursome, three singles Saturday format for the final so that play is completed by lunchtime and before the rain is scheduled to return.

+Top performers for North-east in the match-play have been Sam Locke, Christopher Lamb and Clark Brechin, each with two wins out of two. Barrie Edmond and Stephen Roger have scored one foursomes win out of two.
+Adam Dunton had a "bad luck" day. He was roughly four under par in a tremendous morning match with the leading qualifier, Glasgow's Calum Fyfe, who birdied the 17th to draw level for the first time. Then Dunton drove out of bounds at the last so that when Fyfe won the 18th it was the only time he had led in the match.
+Come the afternoon and Adam was two up on his Lanarkshire opponent Lewis Irvine after 15 holes. But when North-east chalked up a third win and could not lose, the Dunton v Irvine match was declared a "halved match," much to the chagrin of the Ellon man!
I sympathise with Dunton. I prefered the old way in which all matches were played to a finish and not declared "halved matches" if and when the overall result had been determined.
+ Lothians have two 100 per centers: Kieran Cantley and Benn McLeod who won morning and afternoon today.


M Napier and S Blair bt A Farmer and C Thomson 3 and 1.
K Cantley bt M Clark 3 and 1.
S McLaren lost to S Watt 3 and 2
E McIntosh lost to D Sibbald 2 and 1
B McLeod bt D Anderson 6 and 5.

B Edmond and S Roger bt G Rankin and G Yates 5 and 4.
S Locke bt E Wood 5 and 4
A Dunton halved with  L Irvine
C Lamb bt S Rennie 4 and 3
C Brechin  halved with D Dougan



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