Thursday, August 02, 2018


Poppleton wins through at 20th in

English men's amateur championship



Brabazon Trophy winner Nick Poppleton kept alive his hopes of a rare double when he squeezed through his first match play round in the English men’s amateur championship at Formby Golf Club, Lancashire.
Poppleton (Wath) went to the 20th before beating his friend and fellow Yorkshireman Lewis Hollingworth (Rotherham), making his way into the final 32, when his shot from a greenside bunker finished an inch from the hole.
“Lewis played some nice golf, hats off to him. He scrambled nicely when he was out of position and never looked like he was going to give me a hole,” he remarked. That was never truer than on the 19th where Hollingworth holed from 35ft to keep the match alive.
But the 20th went Poppleton’s way – and his challenge for the title double continues. It’s over 20 years since the feat was last achieved, by Mark Foster in 1995.
Top seed Sam Rook – another Yorkshireman, from Lindrick - was also involved in a tight match, before beating Daniel O’Loughlin (Ruddington Grange) by one hole.
Their game was a birdie fest, with at least three holes halved in birdie.
Rook got one ahead with birdies on 14 and 15, only for O’Loughlin to square matters with a 17th hole birdie. But Rook went through to the next round with yet another birdie on the 18th hole. “It was a good match, good fun,” he said.
David Langley (Castle Royle) was also on top form, shooting five under for the 13 holes which his game lasted. “I didn’t give him many opportunities,” he said, adding: “This is a really good course for matchplay. It’s extremely fair and you have to hit good golf shots all the time.”
There was more spectacular stuff in the match between Angus Flanagan, a past winner of the Carris Trophy, and Jack Gaunt, an England international who reached the final of last year’s amateur.
Flanagan (St George’s Hill) was two up after 16, but Gaunt (Drayton Park) eagled 17 and birdied 18 – where he holed a 25-footer – to take the game down the 19th. But Flanagan came back with his own winning birdie to join the 32 players who return tomorrow.
Other notable casualties of the first day’s match-play included England international David Hague (Malton and Norton) who lost 4and 3 to 12th seed Tom Forster (Elton Furze). England A squad player Bailey Gill (Lindrick) was beaten 2 and 1 by Rhys Lawrence (Coventry.
But other England players Jake Burnage (Saunton) and Andrew Wilson (Darlington) made their way safely through, winning 3 and 1 and 4 and 2 respectively.
Boy international Robin Williams (Peterborough Milton) few the flag for the U18s, winning his game against Harry Butler (Chigwell) by 4 and 3.

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Image copyright Leaderboard Photography




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