Senior Bears start league campaign with a win!
The Warwickshire Seniors began their 2018 league campaign with a home match against Shropshire & Herefordshire (S&H), at Olton Golf Club. The home side was looking to win their opening league match for only the second time against a very strong S&H team who were themselves the inaugural winners of the West Midlands league.
Warwickshire, the defending league champions picked a strong side, including within their ranks six of the team that had competed in the County Finals last October. The team also featured debutant David Calvert from Moor Hall Golf Club. The 2 handicapper was featured in Match 3 along with Martin Fell, the latter being an ever present asset during Warwickshire's three day tilt at the County Finals.
The weather was sunny and warm from the outset and despite all matches being very closely contested, the home side enjoyed a commanding lead at lunchtime, having won all six morning matches. In the presence of Warwickshire Golf Union President, Graham Barton and immediate Past President, Bob Harrison, the home players took to the course after lunch, knowing they only required three and a half points from the twelve available, to secure victory.
However, were the visitors to win the opening three matches, the match score would be tied, as two points per match are played for in the afternoon, compared to the one point per match in the morning. The team were mindful that they needed to play with little regard to the morning scores and just concentrate on winning the afternoon four ball series.
Midway through the afternoon however, many of the matches were in favour of the visiting side. Indeed only in Match 6 were the home side ahead and this was about to change as the S&H pairing started to make some birdies to not only get back on even terms, but saw them take the lead for the first time going to the 18th hole. Warwickshire however won the final hole to square the match. It seems that many of the home pairings had been able to reverse their early deficits entering the final holes and whilst not able to do so in every match, this proved sufficient and the afternoon matches were shared with 2 wins, 2 halves and 2 defeats to each team.
The final score of 12 points to 6 for the home side was very gratifying and puts the team in good heart for their match next month against Staffordshire at Trentham in June.
The Olton course was very well presented with players from both sides commenting on the quality of the greens which provided an excellent surface to putt on.
The matches were as always all played in an excellent spirit and my best wishes to Steve Hawke and his Shropshire and Herefordshire team for their remaining fixtures.
My thanks to Olton Golf Club for their hospitality and attentiveness and particularly to the catering staff who looked after everyone throughout the day. To the greens staff who had worked so hard to present the course in such fantastic condition after the significant 36 hole medal competition held over the weekend.
In closing my thanks again to Graham and Bob for their support on the day and to the team for their resolute and professional performance on the day.
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