England six face US in inaugural Concession Cup

Richard Latham

Six English players have been named in the 18-strong Great Britain and Ireland team to face the United States in the inaugural Concession Cup to be played at The Concession Golf Club at Bradenton, Florida on May 1st – 3rd.

Each line-up will consist of eight players in the mid amateur age group, eight seniors and two super seniors to contest this Ryder Cup-style charity event.

The Concession Cup is designed to celebrate the amateur game through international competition while giving back to worthy causes. It is also intended to showcase top amateur golfers from both sides of the Atlantic and the true spirit, character and competitiveness of amateur golf, all for the benefit of charity.

Jack Nicklaus and Tony Jacklin are lending their names to the event and will act as Honorary Captains as well as attending the opening ceremony along with fellow Ryder Cup player Paul Azinger and Gary Koch.

The English mid amateurs chosen are Ed Richardson and Martin Young.  Richardson, 45 (Hemsted Forest, Sussex) is a past international with several victories including the Hong Kong Amateur, two West of England Stroke Play Championships and the Midland Open Amateur.

Young, 43 (Brokenhurst Manor, Hampshire, IoW & CI) is a former English Mid Amateur champion who has also finished third and fourth in the event. His victories include the Lagonda Trophy while he has represented Hampshire, Isle of Wight and Channel Islands in several County Championship finals.

There are three English seniors chosen including current national champion Richard Latham (image copyright Leaderboard Photography) along with fellow senior internationals Richard Partridge and Andrew Stracey.

Latham, 55 (Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire) won his first two events after qualifying as a senior last year. After lifting the English title at Bristol & Clifton, he won the Scottish Seniors at Elie and starred for England on his debut in the European Seniors Team Championships in Hungary. Latham’s successes as a senior follow a distinguished playing career in county golf for Hertfordshire and Lincolnshire.

Partridge, 56 (Wildernesse, Kent) is another relative newcomer to the senior ranks. He finished runner-up to Latham in last year’s Scottish Seniors and tied fifth in the English. He also made his debut as a senior international in 2013.

Stracey, 60 (Denham, BB&O) has won the Welsh Seniors Open twice as well as the Irish Seniors title and has come close on several occasions to winning the English crown. He finished runner-up in 2009 and tied third in the past two years while he has been a senior international since 2009.

The English Super Senior chosen is Peter Hedges, 67 (Wildernesse, Kent) who played in two Walker Cups, the Eisenhower Trophy, played 73 times for England and won the Brabazon Trophy in 1976.

Also in the GB&I team are several other Walker Cup players including Eoghan O’Connell from Ireland in the Mid Amateur section, while the seniors include Ireland’s Garth McGimpsey, who will act as GB&I playing captain, and Arthur Pierse.

The other Super Senior is Ian Hutcheon, another Walker Cup cap and Eisenhower Trophy player and former Scottish champion.

The American will field a powerful line-up which includes Vinnie Giles, four times a Walker Cup player and winning US captain in 1993, winner of the Amateur Championship and US Amateur and Senior Amateur, Paul Simson, twice a winner of the British Senior Amateur, and Jim Holtgrieve, another US Walker Cup player and captain, one of their two Super Seniors.

Each days play at Concession will follow Ryder Cup lines with nine foursomes matches on day one, nine fourballs on day two and will conclude with 18 singles on the final day.