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Chris Boughton's Golf Column: Bury golfers picked for county team

Two Bury St Edmunds Golf Club members have been selected for the 2020 Suffolk County men’s team.

Ben Coleman (reigning BSE Club Champion) and the long-hitting Craig Nurse both play off a handicap of scratch. Coleman took part in the squad’s friendly match recently against a team of local professionals in preparation for their forthcoming Anglian League season.

Held at Hintlesham Golf Club, the amateurs put up a good show only losing by 2.5 to 1.5. In the first game, Coleman & George Fricker lost 3 & 1 to Paul Waring and Will Farley.

Ben Coleman picked for 2020 Suffolk team (28929116)
Ben Coleman picked for 2020 Suffolk team (28929116)

Sam Byford & Habebul Islam halved the second game against the very strong Pro pairing of Hugo Dobson & Sam Forgan.

Game three saw Chris Vince and new County Second Team Captain James Tyler go down by just one hole to Chris Soanes & Calvin Sherwood. In the final game Sam Debenham & Jack Cardy won 4 & 3 against Joe Cardy & Calvin Sherwood.

The Anglian league matches start in May.

Craig Nurse picked for 2020 Suffolk team (28929124)
Craig Nurse picked for 2020 Suffolk team (28929124)

Thetford Golf Club

Ian Ramsay returned a level par card of 72 to win the February Division One Medal at Thetford on Sunday. The four handicapper had birdies at the 3rd, 6th and 17th to offset dropped shots at the 8th, 15th and 18th. His nett 68 was good enough to win by one from Paul Waters, who returned 80-11-69.

A highlight of the day was a hole-in-one by 11-handicap Robert Kingsley at the 16th, which is a 152-yard par-3 with the bottom of the pin hidden from view.

His playing partner, Robert Bentley, said: “We all thought it could be good and knew it would be close. When there was no ball in sight, we guessed it was in the hole – and it was.”

It was the first competitive ace of the year – there were two in 2019.

Final scores: Division One – 68 Ian Ramsay (4hcp); 69 Paul Waters (11hcp); 70 Peter Allott (8hcp) and Paul Pearce (6hcp). Division Two – 69 Terry Harrison (19hcp); 74 Paul Parsons (20hcp) and Malcolm Fleet (18hcp).

The Everard Gates Trophy, at Thetford, is a winter eclectic where the best score recorded at each hole over six separate rounds counts.

This year’s winner is Jason Huggins, who plays off 3.An eagle two at the 5th boosted his card which also included eight birdies for a total of 62, 10 under par. He received half of his handicap for an overall score of 60.5 to win by two strokes from Steve Campbell (70-7.5=62.5).

Other scores: 67-4=63 Peter Allott; 66-2.5=63.5 Mike Horley; 71-7=64 Martin Jackson; 67-3=64 Paul Pearce; 68-3.5=64.5 Dave Hudson; 71-6=65 Steve Burridge and Andrew Knowles; 68-2-66 Matt Harben.

Bury St Edmunds Golf Club

In the February Stableford at Bury, Daniel Bright had birdies at the 1st, 3rd, 11th & 18th holes on his way to a winning score of 43 points. The seven handicapper was level par gross for the front nine and just one over on the back nine in a superb round of competitive golf.

In second place Carl Pearson started badly with a double bogey on the 1st and 4th holes and stood at 5 over gross at the end of his front nine. But he had a stunning back 9 with birdies on the 10th, 12th, 13th, 14th & 16th to finally return his card with 42 points. Five handicapper Glenn Knott came third with 42 points in a round that included three birdies.

James Poulson topped Division 2 with 40 points followed closely by second placed Ben Johnson (39pts) and Gary Warren 38 points in third spot.

Paul Elstone took the honours in Division 3 with 39 points.

The final round of the Winter Goblets series of matches was due to take place at Bury last Sunday.

With winds gusting to 60mph forecast, the competition was very sensibly postponed on the Friday. The weather on the day was exactly as forecast.

The final round has been rescheduled for Sunday, March 1.

The Suffolk Golf Club

Stephen Searle was three points clear at the top of the Midweek Stableford leader board last Wednesday with 42 points.

Jim Chapman finished second and Craig Smart was two points further back in third.

After two rounds of the latest Midweek Order of Merit series, Graham Chapman is the early front runner with 14 points followed by Ivan Snelling with 11pts and Stephen Searle on 10.

Brian Newell has been the in-form golfer in the Seniors’ section at the Suffolk so far this year and he recorded yet another win last Thursday in their Bettter-Ball competition.

This time he partnered Ed Banks to win with 44 points.

Michael Field & Stephen Brooks took second place with 42pts followed by Brian Cack & Paul Anderson who finished 3rd with 41 just pushing Michal Christopher and Tony Bottrell into 4th on count-back.

Suffolk Winter Alliance

Fifty-one amateurs took part in the latest Suffolk Winter Alliance meeting staged at Southwold, but there were no professionals in the field.

Overnight heavy rain eased to light showers for the early starters, but the wind increased as the day progressed making golfing conditions very difficult.

The Stableford event was won by the Stoke-by-Nayland pairing of Graham Vandervord and John Smith with 42 points.

Ben and Sam Forgan are still the joint leaders in the Sweep Order of Merit (both have 41 points).

The next meeting is a Fourball Betterball Stableford to be played at Seckford Hall.

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