England’s hopes of becoming European Boys champions for the first time in eight years were dashed when they were beaten 4½ – 2½ by Italy in the semi-finals at Lindingo in Sweden.
In the morning foursomes, Toby Tree and Ashton Turner won 3&2 against Giulio Castagnara and Renato Paratore, but the second game proved decisive.
Max Orrin and Matthew Fitzpatrick were all square playing the 18th against Filippo Campigli and Luigi Botta drove wildly to the right but found a lie and played their second to 12 feet.
Unfortunately, Orrin left his approach short of the green, Fitzpatrick chipped to eight feet but the Italians holed for a birdie three to win 1up and go into lunch level at 1-1.
Thunder and lightning delayed the singles for several hours and for most of the time games were close. However, Orrin lost on the 18th and Fitzpatrick was all square with his opponent and a halved game was declared as fading light prevented the contest going to extra holes.
Nick Marsh went 1up through 16 after his opponent’s putt horseshoed from two feet, but lost the next two holes to par to lose 1-down. Patrick Kelly was 3-down through 12 holes and never made up the deficit to lose 3&1.
Although Tree completed a solid 3&2 victory the Italians were over the line, leaving England to face Germany tomorrow (Saturday) to decide third place.
Meanwhile, the Italians will meet hosts Sweden in the final.
(Image of Ashton Turner © Tom Ward)