Cambridgeshire v Sussex at Saffron Walden

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The annual match for SGC v Cambridgeshire Captains with a long journey for Sussex that for most was driven through spells of torrential rain which didn’t look promising for the days golf.

 

However when we arrived at Saffron Walden the weather was clearing and we were greeted by a lovely course in the grounds of Audley End mansion house and a very smart and green looking course. It was clear that the drought conditions that most of us are experiencing in Sussex, was not matched by the lush grass and fairways in East Anglia. The views over the town and surrounding areas were fantastic.

Having been greeted and welcomed by Maurice Palmer the Cambridge Captain we enjoyed a bacon roll and drinks and we set off to defend the Sussex v Cambridge trophy won last year at Cottesmore by Sussex. Peter Ward our Vice Captain was captain for the day as Brian Street had a clash of dates with another County Captains dinner.

 

Peter Ward and Peter Rodger led the way and by playing some excellent golf got SGC off to a winning start. Match Secretary David Harmer and Jerry Hibbs had an up and down day, playing well to be 3 up at the turn lost the next 3 holes but hung on to the end for a narrow win at the 17th. Graham Ward and Tom Hutchinson had another close game and even Grahams eagle 2 at the par 4 16th when he holed his second shot from the fairway could not stop them losing 1 down. Bryan Fairbrass and Mark Dunn and Ian Wood (Woody) with Ken Penfold both fought hard but local knowledge was getting the edge. Things looked up when Kerry Scott and Nigel Wates played excellent golf for a narrow win at the last. The spirit dropped when Frank Edmonds and Norman Milburn came in early having lost on the 16th having fought well against good opponents. So it came down to Nigel Powell and David Schwartz to save the day. They had a brilliant day against a past captain of the home club, it was nip and tuck all the way and they stood on the last hole, which is a steep downhill 167 yard par three, all square right in front of the clubhouse. Sussex needed to win the hole and Nigel Powell made the green and their opponents were over the back. Nigel got his three but Mark Jones got up and down to finish in three over gross for a halved match. The final total was Cambridge 4½  and Sussex 3½ 

This was not good enough for Sussex to retain the trophy but everyone had an enjoyable day played in a great spirit of friendship.

 

The dinner was excellent after the match with wine supplied and enjoyed, especially by those of us not driving!

 

Both Maurice and Peter spoke well after the match with some jokes and banter going on which was great.

Followed by the presentation of the trophy to Cambridge before the long journey back.

 

 

David Harmer

 

     © Sussex Golf Captains 2019