New faces in quest for Seniors County Championship
A new name will be inscribed on the trophy at the conclusion of the English Seniors Men’s County Championship finals being staged at Heworth Golf Club in County Durham on 9th – 11th October.
None of this year’s regional winners, Gloucestershire, Hertfordshire, Lancashire and Nottinghamshire, have won the title which has been dominated by Cheshire and Kent since the competition was inaugurated in 2005.
Kent has been the winners for the past three years but they were outclassed by Hertfordshire in the South East qualifying and with three current senior internationals in their line-up, will arguably start as favourites.
This will be the eighth Seniors County Championship and only Lancashire has competed previously, in 2007 at Rotherham and last year at Gog Magog in Cambridge. But this will be the first taste of finals action for the other three counties.
Lancashire earned their third appearance when they beat Yorkshire by a stroke in the Northern Qualifier at Heswall. Their side includes senior international Stewart King, secretary/manager at West Lancashire Golf Club, Terry Brown and Mike Gray, all of whom played in their two previous finals. Jeremy Morgan is the Lancashire senior champion.
Hertfordshire won the South East qualifier by eight strokes at Moor Park, ahead of Surrey, while Kent finished fourth. With senior internationals John Ambridge, Doug Cameron and Tyrone Carter in their line-up, they have a great chance of keeping the title in the South East.
Ambridge and Carter gained their first senior international caps when they were chosen for the European Seniors Team Championship in Portugal, England finishing third. The pair were then joined by Cameron for the Senior Home Internationals in Wales and helped England to a thrilling victory over defending champions Ireland. Carter is the Hertfordshire senior champion.
Gloucestershire qualified for their first finals when they finished 19 strokes ahead of Dorset at Marlborough. Their team includes Welsh international Bob Broad, South West Seniors champion Richard Wood, father of European Tour professional Chris Wood, while their captain is Richard Boulding.
The line-up also includes John Chilvers, who is the Gloucestershire Senior champion.
Nottinghamshire won a weather-hit Midland Qualifier when the greens became waterlogged at Aston Wood in Staffordshire. So the competition was decided over nine holes with Notts scoring 232, three ahead of Shropshire & Herefordshire.
In their line-up is Clive Graham, the county’s seniors champion, but it doesn’t include England seniors international Charlie Banks, a member of the victorious England Seniors Home Internationals squad.
The Seniors Finals are contested on a round robin basis, each match consisting of three foursomes and six singles. In the first round of matches on 9th October, Lancashire will meet Nottinghamshire and Hertfordshire will play Gloucestershire
Richard Boulding (Henbury)
Bob Broad (Minchinhampton)
John Chilvers (Henbury)
Bill Higgins (Tewkesbury Park)
Stuart Masson (Minchinhampton)
Ian Melvin (Cotswold Hills)
Dave Potter (Naunton Downs)
Richard Wood (Long Ashton)
John Ambridge (Moor Park)
Peter Bax (Mid Herts)
Doug Cameron (Moor Park)
Tyrone Carter (Stevenage)
David Danhauser (Moor Park)
Tom McEvoy (Old Fold Manor)
Martin McKenna (Letchworth)
Gaius Potton (Berkhamsted)
Terry Brown (Stand)
Stuart Fawcett (Southport & Ainsdale)
Robert Fox (Royal Lytham & St Anne’s)
Alan Gillespie (Clitheroe)
Mike Gray (Lancaster)
Stewart King (West Lancashire)
Jeremy Morgan (Longridge)
Glynn Rees (Fleetwood)
Mike Briggs (Retford)
David Brown (Sherwood Forest)
Clive Graham (Coxmoor)
Peter Higgins (Radcliffe-on-Trent)
Colin Maber (Notts)
Donald McCart (Sherwood Forest)
Neil Martin (Beeston Fields)
Stuart Pond (Worksop)