England’s senior men have successfully defended their Home Internationals title in the weather-hit championship at Rosslare, Ireland.
“It was just fantastic to come here as champions and to go home as champions,” sad team captain Roy Smethurst.
In the start-stop-go event, Smethurst’s team laid the foundations of their win on the first day when they beat hosts and European champions, Ireland, 8-1.
Their second match, against Wales, was interrupted by high winds, but when they returned to the course this morning they completed a clean sweep of the six available singles. The three foursomes were declared halved by captains’ agreement.
The scoreline of 7.5-1.5 meant England needed just one point from this afternoon’s match of seven singles against Scotland. Stephen East quickly provided that with his 6/5 win and the team went on to halve overall.
East was joined in the winners’ circle by Seniors’ Amateur Champion Bryan Hughes, while Doug Cameron, Mark Stones and Ian Attoe all halved their games. Attoe, who came down the last 1up, had a chance to win the match outright but his 6ft birdie putt on the last slid by.
The other two points were shared by captains’ agreement, giving a 4.5-4.5 overall score. It was another difficult day with the wind steadily increasing. The difference was highlighted by Hughes’ play at the 9th: in the morning he hit driver wedge; in the afternoon he was short with driver, 3-wood.
England’s top scorers were East and Hughes who both had four wins from four outings. Attoe, Stones and Cameron were unbeaten.
In the other matches Ireland beat Scotland 6-3 and Wales 7.5-1.5 to finish runners-up. Scotland were third and Wales fourth.
England team: Ian Attoe (Worplesdon, Surrey), Doug Cameron (Henley, BB&O), Ian Crowther (Royal Lytham & St Annes, Lancashire), Stephen East (Wike Ridge, Yorkshire), Bryan Hughes (Hesketh, Lancashire), Alan Mew (Stoneham, Hampshire) and Mark Stones (Boyce Hill, Essex).
Image copyright Pat Cashman, courtesy GUI
27 September 2017
Senior Home International matches suspended in high winds
High winds forced the suspension of play on the second day of the Senior Men’s Home Internationals at Rosslare, Ireland.
In anticipation of bad weather it had been agreed to play the singles first today, but the players were called off before any of the games could be completed.
The players will return to the course at 8am tomorrow to complete their singles. The captains have agreed that today’s foursomes will be declared halved.
After the second day’s play is completed the teams will play their third and final match of the series over seven singles tomorrow afternoon. The remaining two points will be shared equally, so that in each match the teams will start at 1-1.
England captain Roy Smethurst commented: “The wind was just horrific. The rain was driving so you needed a brolly, but you could hardly hold it and the ball just wouldn’t stay on the green.” The forecast is for more high winds, but no rain.
England, the defending champions, had made a great start to the tournament on day one, beating European champions Ireland 8-1. Today they were playing Wales while Scotland, who also won yesterday, played Ireland. The final matches of the round robin will see Ireland play Wales and England play Scotland.
26 September 2017
England make superb start to senior title defence
England’s senior men made a superb start to the defence of their Home Internationals title when they beat the hosts and European champions Ireland 8-1.
England were unbeaten, scoring seven wins and two halves on the opening day of the championship at Rosslare.
“Everyone played well and it was a good team performance,” said England captain Roy Smethurst (pictured).
The team set off with three foursomes wins, scored by Ian Attoe/Stephen East (4/2), Alan Mew/Mark Stones (1up) and Ian Crowther/Bryan Hughes (2/1).
English senior champion Doug Cameron led out the singles and was hot off the blocks, reaching the turn in four-under par with a lead of five holes. His opponent retaliated with some birdies on the back nine but Cameron won comfortably, 3/2.
East had the biggest win of the day, finishing his singles 6/5 despite losing the first couple of holes. Meanwhile Hughes and Crowther both won 3/2. The halves were scored by Attoe and Mew.
In the day’s other match Scotland beat Wales 6.5-2.5. The first day’s matches were played in chilly temperatures and a strengthening wind – but much worse is forecast for tomorrow.
Heavy rain and winds of up to 40mph are predicted and as a result the six foursomes will be played in the morning, with the foursomes following if possible.