Home Internationals: England teams tame Welsh dragon

England today successfully doused the fire of the Welsh dragon and claimed a double success at the Home Internationals.

On day two of the boys’ and girls’ event at Downfield Golf Club in Dundee, England ran out winners by 16-5.

Across the Irish Sea at Ballyliffin Golf Club, the combined men’s and women’s team also tasted victory against Wales on day one of their championship.

The winning margin was 14-7 in favour of England.

This year, the combined teams are playing for specially commissioned R&A trophies.

As well as coming out on top in the combined events, all four groups won their own separate battles as the teams play for the historic trophies associated with this long-running match-up between the four home nations.

View scoring from Girls’ and Boys’ Home Internationals

View scoring from Women’s and Men’s Home Internationals

 

Boys and Girls

England will carry a 100% record into tomorrow’s match against Scotland following today’s hard-fought win against Wales.

The boys and girls know that their fate is in their own hands after following up an opening day victory against Ireland with a day two triumph over the Welsh.

England – with 14 players out of 16 sampling the Home Internationals for the first time – not only edged the combined match against the Welsh. The boys and girls also won their individual jousts.

The girls won 8-1, while the boys earned an 8-4 victory.

On the back of a similar clean sweep against the Irish, England go into the final day of action knowing that they are on track to claim three pieces of silverware.

The winning margin was, by close of play, comprehensive.

However, at one stage midway through the morning session, Wales were up in four of the seven foursomes games on the course.

Slowly, though, England turned it around and headed into lunch with a commanding 5-2 lead.

An example of a reversal of fortunes came in the game featuring Ellise Rymer and Sophia Fullbrook.

The girls struggled on the front nine and fell five down. On the back nine, the duo found a spark and came home in three-under par to win the match with a brilliant four on 18.

Fullbrook’s tee shot took a hard kick left off the fairway into the rough, but Rymer’s cleverly executed low shot through gap in the trees found the fringe.

Fullbrook’s chip to four feet was excellent as was the putt from her partner.

Other morning winners included Sam Easterbrook and Frazer Jones who closed out their match on 17 with a tidy up and down from behind the green.

Amelia Wan and Ellen Yates secured a 4&2 win while Isla McDonald O’Brien holed a six-foot putt to seal a 3&2 win in partnership with Imogen Williamson.

Dylan Shaw-Radford and Ben Brown clawed back a mid-round deficit to halve the opening game and the final of the seven foursomes also ended even stevens. Seb Cave and Joe Sykes fought back from two down with three to play to secure a half on 18.

In the singles, England had to much strength in depth for their opponents.

There were fine early wins for Dylan Shaw-Radford and Ellen Yates (pictured above).

Josh Hill and Amelia Wan then added two more points as the first four games all went England’s way. Hill sealed his match by holing from a greenside bunker for an eagle on the 15th.

Easterbrook delivered another point without having to venture beyond the 15th and Rymer won her match on the 14th.

Williamson and Fullbrook halved their singles to add to England’s points tally.

Rosie Bee Kim and Seb Cave showed good form to pick up points with the final two matches of the day also going England’s way.

Charlie Croker – rested from the morning foursomes – showed his potential with a 4&3 win and Joe Sykes closed out his match with a 3&1 success.

 

Men and Women

The Old Links at Ballyliffin proved a happy hunting ground for England on day one of the Men’s and Women’s Home Internationals.

In all three elements of the competition, England got the better of their Welsh opponents.

The overall combined team result ended 14-7 in England’s favour.

The men enjoyed a 9-3 victory, while the women edged out their cross-border rivals by a margin of 5-4.

After the morning session, England’s joint team took a 5-2 lead into the singles.

In recent times the partnerships of Sam Bairstow and Arron Edwards-Hill and John Gough and Olly Huggins have been profitable in team events – and that continued in County Donegal.

Bairstow and Edwards-Hill (pictured below) claimed a 5&4 win over Tomi Bowen and Matt Roberts.

Gough and Huggins notched a 5&3 win against James Nash and Conor Jones.

These scorelines were trumped by two newcomers to the team in the shape of Josh Berry and Harley Smith.

The duo stepped up from the boys’ squad to record a thumping 7&6 victory against Paddy Mullins and Alex James.

Another promoted member of the boys’ squad, Tyler Weaver, joined up with Jack Bigham to win the anchor match by a 2&1 margin.

Rebecca Earl and Maggie Whitehead supplied a point on behalf of the women.

The former English Women’s Stroke Play champion and the 2021 English Under 16 Girls’ champion combined to good effect to win their game against Ffion Tynan and Darcey Harry on the 18th.

The afternoon singles produced second wins of the day for a number of the England team.

Bairstow, Edwards-Hill, Gough and Berry earned victories for the men, while Earl and Whitehead doubled their personal points tally with singles wins on the 18th green.

The other singles winners were Rachel Gourley and Hannah Screen while Ben Quinney chipped in with a welcome point from his head-to-head encounter with James Nash in another match that came down to the final hole.

In tomorrow’s second in the round-robin series of matches, England will take on Scotland after they fell to defeat against hosts Ireland.