England lead Spain by four

Ashley Chesters Jimmy Mullen

England produced a fighting performance in this morning’s foursomes against Spain and need 3½ points from the afternoon’s 10 singles to win back the Seve Ballesteros trophy at Burnham & Berrow.

The foursomes were shared 2½ points apiece, thanks to a last gasp half from the final pair, Nick Marsh and Michael Saunders, who had been three down after 12 holes. It took the overall scoreline to 12-8 in England’s favour, with 15½ points required for victory.

Marsh and Saunders narrowed the deficit to one down with birdies on the 14th and 17th – both par threes – and won the 18th with a great up and down from a greenside bunker, while the Spanish pair three-putted from the back of the green.

England’s two wins were provided by Ashley Chesters and Jimmy Mullen (Image © Leaderboard Photography), who won 6/4; and shortly afterwards by Gemma Clews and Hollie Muse who won 3/2.

Chesters and Mullen set off set off at high speed, with five birdies in the first eight holes, taking them to seven up. They didn’t lose a hole until the ninth where they missed the green in regulation for the first time and dropped a shot. Spain had two birdies in the next four holes but their challenge ended after their tee shot finished in a bush on the short 14th and the point was England’s.

Clews and Muse were relentless, reeling off the pars with very tidy golf and steadily edging further ahead of their opponents.

Meanwhile, Alice Hewson and Bethan Popel also produced par golf, but their opponents were inspired, with four birdies and an eagle which helped them to a 4/2 win.

Sean Towndrow and Ashton Turner were locked in an excellent match which was spattered with birdies, but in which the Spanish pair just had the upper hand on the greens. The England pair battled fiercely and won the 17th to keep the game alive, but were beaten on the last.