Blackwell golfer triumphs by one-shot in the 2013 competition final held at West Lancashire GC
THE FIRST day’s action at the England Golf Captains final held at West Lancashire Golf Club saw finalists with an early start have the best conditions to score well. As it transpired the best five scores returned came from the first dozen groups. Leading after round one was Gordon Bailey of Blackwell Golf Club posting a good score of 36 points in very testing conditions.
Four players Andrew Hurley (Toot Hill), Tom Rickerby (Lancaster), Ian Armstrong (West Berkshire), and Paul Dimond (The Wiltshire) were only two points back going into the second round, so there was still a lot to play for.
The conditions on day two slightly improved but the course remained in challenging form. Marie Watson (Chesterfield) set the early pace returning a score of 36 points, which became the best second round score beating several others on count back.
As the final few groups were approaching the home stretch it was apparent that there would be a tense finish.
Alan Richardson of Scarborough North Cliff Golf Club, who had posted a first round score of 33 points birdied three holes on the front nine to help card 36 points and set the club house lead of 69 with only two groups remaining on the course.
The lead quickly changed again following Tom Rickerby’s second round score of 36 points. This added to a first round 34 put his total at 70 with only the final group to finish.
In that final group though was overnight leader Gordon Bailey, who had carded 19 points on the front nine but was finding the conditions on the back nine more challenging.
Needing to score down the last, his approach shot saw him find the tricky greenside bunker, but was not pressured by the gallery on the clubhouse balcony with a good bunker shot and two solid puts from 12 feet giving him a five for one point and 35 points overall.
It was soon delight for the Blackwell man as his final total of 71 points was enough to claim victory and win the 2013 England Golf Captains final.
England Golf Captains Final
1st Gordon Bailey (Blackwell Golf Club) 36 35 71
2nd Thomas Rickerby (Lancaster Golf Club) 34 36 70
3rd Alan Richardson (Scarborough North Cliff Golf Club) 33 36 69
Round 1 Best Score:
Ian Armstrong (West Berkshire Golf Club) 34
Round 2 Best Score:
Marie Watson (Chesterfield Golf Club) 36 (on countback)