A top quality men’s field will gather at Aldeburgh Golf Club in Suffolk this week to battle it out in the final of the English Men’s County Championship, from September 28-30.
The four contenders for the crown, each representing one of the England Golf men’s groups, are BB&O (Berks, Bucks & Oxon) from the South East; Gloucestershire from the South West; Lincolnshire from the Midlands; and Yorkshire from the North.
Yorkshire has dominated the championship over the years with 21 wins to their credit, with the latest in 2016. The other three counties have all been champions, but not for over 30 years. BB&O scored the last of their three wins in 1983, Gloucestershire has won twice, most recently in 1979. and Lincolnshire’s sole victory was in 1974.
Between them they’re fielding impressive teams for the three-day round robin championship. In total there are five members of England’s winning team from the Men’s Home Internationals: David Langley (BB&O), Joe Long and Mitch Waite (Gloucestershire), with David Hague and Bailey Gill (Yorkshire).
BB&O will also have Harrison Arnold, from England’s winning team at the Boys’ Home Internationals, and Tim Shin, who teamed up with Langley to win last weekend’s English Champion Club Tournament.
Meanwhile, the Gloucestershire line-up also includes former boy international Jack Cope and Nick Day, the runaway winner of the English mid-amateur.
Yorkshire’s team also includes the in-form teenager, Ben Schmidt who has recently won the English Boys’ County Champion of Champions and was runner-up in the English and Italian U16 championships. He’s eyeing a special double, having already helped Yorkshire to win the Boys’ County Finals.
Lincolnshire’s team includes Sam Done, a regular on the national amateur circuit who reached the match play stages of both the British and English amateur championships. Also in the side is Simon Richardson, who has been county champion five times in the last six years – missing out only in 2015 – and who won the English County Champion of Champions in 2017.
The championship starts on Friday when Lincolnshire play Yorkshire and BB&O take on Gloucestershire.
The full teams are:
Harrison Arnold, George Baylis, Adam Birdseye, Olly Huggins, David Langley, Alexander Nicholls, Timothy Shin
Jack Cope, Nick Day, Joe Harvey, Alex Ireland, Joe Long, Jake Phillips, Mitch Waite
Liam Bell, Jack Diment, Sam Done, Chris Haynes, Matthew Haynes, Simon Richardson, Adam Wainwright
Sam Bairstow, Bailey Gill, David Hague, Lewis Hollingworth, Ben Hutchinson, Samuel Rook, Ben Schmidt
Caption: Bailey Gill (pictured) is one of two players in the 2018 Yorkshire team who were also in the county’s winning side in 2016. The other is Ben Hutchinson. (Image copyright Leaderboard Photography)