GOLF: Tough week for Northants Ladies

STILL SMILING - but it was a tough week for Northants Ladies team captain  Mary MacLaren
STILL SMILING - but it was a tough week for Northants Ladies team captain Mary MacLaren
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A good team spirit was not enough in Ladies County Week as the Northamptonshire side suffered defeats in all five matches at Temple GC in Berkshire.

After losing a rain-affected opening game against eventual winners Buckinghamshire 5-1, the team came closest to grabbing something on the second and third days as they were beaten by a single point by both Oxfordshire and Warwickshire.

Day four saw a 6-3 reverse to the host county, before Worcestershire and Herefordshire inflicted a fifth successive defeat on Northants, for the second successive year, by the scoreline 7-2 on the last day.

Charlotte Taylor was the standout player for the county as she won four and lost just one of her seven games, while county champion Thalia Martin remained unbeaten until the singles on the last day.

Team captain Mary MacLaren said: “Congratulations to the best team for spirit and hope, they never stopped trying. Next year will be our turn.”

Scratch League

Northants County made it four wins out of four in division one this season as the defending champions beat Overstone Park 5-3 at home.

After the opening four ties were shared, County took control thanks to victories for Danny Roberts and Tony Lord, before Matt Myers wrapped up the win on the 18th hole.

Peterborough Milton maintained their unbeaten start to the season with a 2-2 draw at Northampton.

An away half early on from Martin Humphreys and wins from Mark Phillips, Ian Wicks and Chris Savage, meant Chris White’s half in the final tie against home club champion Lewis White secured a draw.

Division Two

Leaders Priors Hall recorded their third victory in three outings as they defeated Brampton Heath 5-3 away.

Anthony Lamond (5&4), Trevor Shiells (3&2), Ryan Genner (2&1) and Michael Farr (3&1) grabbed wins for the Corby club, while Ian Abrahams and Ryan Jaffray secured a half point apiece.

Cold Ashby fought back to edge a tight home contest with Kingthorpe by the scoreline 5-3.

Although away duo Jack Walding and Darren Watts won the opening two games, the hosts remained unbeaten in the other six ties as Greg Croxton secured the vital point by beating Mark Bazeley on the 18th.

Handicap League

Brampton Heath took a big stride towards qualifying for the semi-finals after collecting their second away victory of the campaign in Group A with a 11-4 success at Oundle.

In an otherwise tight contest, Matt Clulow and Elliott Metcalfe gave the visitors an early lead by thrashing their opponents by seven holes, before Ian Patton and Leighton Adams wrapped up the Brampton win by taking the last game by one hole.

Group C

Hellidon Lakes were untouchable on their own course against Daventry as they recorded the largest win by any team this season with a 34-0 home victory.

Sam Wade and Paul King’s nine-hole victory was the biggest margin of success, but Ashley Starbuck and Andy McKeown also impressed as they finished eight holes up.

Group D

Two good wins early on and a couple of excellent victories at the back end of the match proved decisive for Priors Hall as they defeated Silverstone 18-3 at home.

Scott Gordon and Ray Shocklidge (four holes) and Paul Briggs and Cullen MacCallum (three holes) took games one and two respectively for Priors, before Matt McLean and Hilmi Say (five holes) and Tom O’Donnell and Mark Mason (six holes) came good in the last two ties.

Northampton are striving for perfection

Northampton maintained their perfect start to the Intermediate League campaign as they came close to whitewashing Kettering before having to settle for a 7½-½ win at Collingtree Park GC.

Ian Townsend, James Brough, Chris Kay, Gareth Parker, Sam Gilkes, Andy Limbert and Darren Matthews all collected points for Harlestone, but Ben Horgan came up just short in the last game as he picked up a half.

It was a similar story for Wellingborough, who displayed their ruthless streak in their latest Intermediate victory as they avoided defeat in all eight matches against Cold Ashby.

Mark Coleman, Andy Grimmitt, Stewart Robertson, Mike Gilbrook, Chris Billson and Joe Griffiths recorded convincing wins, while Paul Hughes and Roger Butler bagged a half apiece in a 7-1 team success.

Overstone Park and Kingsthorpe couldn’t be separated in their match as they both recorded four wins apiece.

Thirteen-year-old Owen Watts impressed on his Kingsthorpe debut as he completed a 7&5 victory against a player with a handicap four higher.

SPRINT6GOLF is played over six holes and under time restraints as an attempt to speed up the game. The exciting new concept makes use of a free mobile app with a 30-second shot clock to ensure a flowing and continuous pace of play. SPRINT6 welcomes all ages and abilities, meaning it is the perfect family activity over the summer.

SPRINT6 is set to make it’s debut at Collingtree Park on Tuesday, July 12, from 4pm.

It will cost £5 for members but a special price of £10 for the inaugural event for visitors. Players must head to the SPRINT6 website to register and download the app before you play.

The game was the idea of Tom Critchley, son of Sky Sports commentator Bruce and, as well as Gareth Bale, has also received backing from England Golf, the Golf Foundation and the European Tour.

“I love golf, but it doesn’t always fit into my busy life,” said Bale. “SPRINT6GOLF is the perfect solution, and it’s fun and fast paced. I’m excited to be part of something that’s going to have such a positive impact.”

Collingtree Park will host qualifying events and the champion will go on to represent our club at the inaugural national final, to be played at the Buckinghamshire on October 10, 2016.

The national winner will receive a trophy and a personally signed SPRINT6GOLF pin flag by Wales football star Bale plus automatic qualification for the 2017 national final. Contact Max Winters at marketing@collingtreeparkgolf.com or call Northampton 700000.