It’s silver for England after a tight battle

English senior women 2015

England’s senior women came tantalisingly close to retaining their European crown – only to lose a nerve-tingling final 3-2 to France.

The players battled back to take two matches down the 19th in the final of the European senior women’s team championship at the National Golf Resort, Lithuania. But they lost them both as their brave defence came to an end and they had to settle for the silver medal.

“The team played their hearts out,” said captain Pat Wrightson, “England could not have more closely defended the trophy.”

Two of the five matches were decided by big margins early on: Julie Brown quickly claimed the first point for England, taking complete control of her game in the difficult, windy conditions, and winning 7/5. Then the French came straight back with their own big win, beating Lindsey Shaw 5/4.

But the other three matches were extremely close. Cath Rawthore managed to claim her point with a very strong finish – she had been two up after 15 before being hauled back to all square, but she parred the difficult 18th to win.

In the foursomes, Caroline Berry and Lulu Housman, the English senior stroke play champion, were one down with two to play. They won the 17th and halved the 18th to take the game on, only to three-putt the 19th.

English senior champion Helen Lowe had a great fightback to give England another chance. She was four down after 10 and was still two down after 16, but won the 17th and 18th to keep the title hopes alive. However, her challenge ended on the par five 19th, where her third shot ran through the green and she was unable to get up and down.

In the play-off for the bronze medal Ireland beat Germany 4-1.

The women’s team was: Caroline Berry (Bromborough), Julie Brown (Trentham), Lulu Housman (Wyke Green), Lindsey Shaw (Chevin), Helen Lowe (Scraptoft), Cath Rawthore (Sale).

In the European senior men’s team championship, England finished fifth by beating Switzerland 4-1 in Pravets, Bulgaria. Ian Attoe and Mark Stones led the way with a 4/3 win in the foursomes, while Stephen East and David Niven secured the necessary other two points in the singles. The matches of Alan Mew and Richard Partridge were halved.

The title was won by Ireland, who beat Italy 3-2. Scotland beat France 3-2 to win the bronze medal.

The men’s team was: Ian Attoe (Worplesdon), Stephen East (Moortown), Alan Mew (Stoneham), David Niven (Newbury & Crookham), Richard Partridge (Wildernesse), and Mark Stones (Boyce Hill).

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04 September 2015

England’s seniors are going for gold

England’s senior women are one match away from successfully defending their title as European team champions.

The team swept Germany aside 4-1 to reach tomorrow’s final at the National Golf Resort in Lithuania. They will play France in the title decider, in a replay of last year’s final.

Germany were the top seeds for the match play and England captain Pat Wrightson commented: “It was a very tight match today. We will be relaxing this evening before warming up for a very hard match tomorrow when we will be trying very hard to retain the trophy.

“The weather forecast for tomorrow is breezy with showers, which will make the golf course even more challenging for all the players.”

Despite the comfortable scoreline, today’s semi-final was closely contested. In the foursomes Caroline Berry and Lulu Housman, the English senior stroke play champion, were quickly down after their opponents birdied two of the first three holes. But they fought back to be all square at the turn and par golf over the next six holes gave them a 4/3 win.

In the singles, English senior champion Helen Lowe fought a very tight match to secure a half point. Cath Rawthore was two down after nine holes but played the remainder in one-under par to win 3/2. Julie Brown was one down after three but chipped in on the 4th hole to get back to all square and reached the 10th tee two up. She extended her lead when she holed a difficult downhill put on the 11th for a birdie and finally won by the convincing margin of 5/4.

Lindsey Shaw, playing par golf, had gone one down after her opponent chipped in from a very difficult position on the ninth. Her match was declared a half on the 16th tee after England secured the necessary points for the overall win. 

The women’s team is: Caroline Berry (Bromborough), Julie Brown (Trentham), Lulu Housman (Wyke Green), Lindsey Shaw (Chevin), Helen Lowe (Scraptoft), Cath Rawthore (Sale).

In the European senior men’s team championship, England beat Spain 3½-1½ at Pravets, Bulgaria. Ian Attoe and Mark Stones won a tight foursomes match on the 19th but there were big wins for Stephen East (5/4) and Alan Mew (6/4).

Tomorrow England will play Switzerland and a win will give them fifth place in the top flight. The final is between Ireland and Italy, while Scotland and France play for the bronze medal.

The men’s team is: Ian Attoe (Worplesdon), Stephen East (Moortown), Alan Mew (Stoneham), David Niven (Newbury & Crookham), Richard Partridge (Wildernesse), and Mark Stones (Boyce Hill).

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03 September, 2015

England senior women reach Euro semi-finals

England’s senior women continued their defence of their European team title with a confident performance to reach the semi-finals.

They beat Spain 3½-1½ in the European team championship quarter-final at the National Golf Resort in Lithuania. Now they will meet top seeds Germany in tomorrow’s semi-finals. In the other match Ireland will play France.

England captain Pat Wrightson reported: “Caroline Berry and Lulu Housman were quickly up in the foursomes match, playing excellent golf to have a resounding win of 6/5.

“Helen Lowe, Cath Rawthore and Julie Brown were all two up after nine holes (in the singles); both Helen and Cath won their matches by 2/1, Julie's match was deemed a half as England had won three points.”

In the final match, Lindsey Shaw played par golf but lost by 3/2 to the on-form Maria De Orueta, who was three-under par for the 16 holes played.

The women’s team is: Caroline Berry (Bromborough), Julie Brown (Trentham), Lulu Housman (Wyke Green), Lindsey Shaw (Chevin), Helen Lowe (Scraptoft), Cath Rawthore (Sale).

Meanwhile, the England senior men lost their quarter-final to Scotland in a close match at Pravets Golf Club, Bulgaria. The result was finally decided in the last singles, when Alan Mew was beaten on the 19th.

English champion Ian Attoe and Mark Stones won their foursomes and Stephen East took the top singles. But the remaining three points went to Scotland, who play Italy in tomorrow’s semi-final. England are out of the medal hunt but will play for place in the top flight and meet Spain tomorrow. 

The men’s team is: Ian Attoe (Worplesdon), Stephen East (Moortown), Alan Mew (Stoneham), David Niven (Newbury & Crookham), Richard Partridge (Wildernesse), and Mark Stones (Boyce Hill).

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02 September 2015

England teams target European medals

England’s senior men and women have made it through the 36-hole qualifying and are targeting medals in their European team championships.

The women, who are the defending champions, qualified fourth at the National Golf Resort in Lithuania. They are safely within the top eight who contest the medals and will play Spain in tomorrow’s quarter finals.

English senior amateur champion Helen Lowe (Scraptoft) led the team’s scoring with rounds of 79 and level par 72 and was sixth on the individual table. Cath Rawthore (Sale) shot 78 75 to finish in the top ten.

Team captain Pat Wrightson commented: “This is a challenging course built within a river bed and featuring water hazards on 15 holes and the first qualifying round was interrupted by thunderstorms, causing a four-hour delay from midday to 4pm.

“Fortunately all England players completed their round before play was suspended due to poor light. The prevailing wet weather conditions have made the course very long and the pin positions are tricky.”

There was some spectacular scoring on the 299-yard par four 14th where both Caroline Berry (Bromborough), in round one and Cath Rawthore, in round two, holed their second wedge shots to card an eagle two.

The women’s team is: Caroline Berry (Bromborough), Julie Brown (Trentham), Lulu Housman (Wyke Green), Lindsey Shaw (Chevin), Helen Lowe (Scraptoft), Cath Rawthore (Sale).

England’s senior men – who have been bronze medallists for the past three years – qualified for the matchplay in third place, behind Ireland and Italy, at Pravets Golf Club, Bulgaria.  In tomorrow’s quarter final they play Scotland, who they beat in last year’s third place play-off.

English senior amateur champion Ian Attoe (Worplesdon) led the team’s scoring with a level par total for 36 holes, with rounds of 71 73.

The men’s team is: Ian Attoe (Worplesdon), Stephen East (Moortown), Alan Mew (Stoneham), David Niven (Newbury & Crookham), Richard Partridge (Wildernesse), and Mark Stones (Boyce Hill).

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