The ever impressive Hessle Golf Club hosted this year’s East Riding Union Amateur Championship on Sunday 30th July. As reported in the media, a small but talented field of 29 was assembled to tackle a full length course featuring slick greens and pin placements to catch the attention of the most discerning golfer.
The morning round was played in bright if blustery conditions which clearly challenged the field bar Hessle’s own Andy Lockwood whose near faultless 68 led at the lunch interval. Four birdies and an eagle were only tempered by a double bogey at the short 11th, however, a 5 shot lead at the half way point on home soil augured well for the afternoon.
Trailing in his wake was multi Amateur Championship winner Alan Wright on 73, latest Hessle recruit, Dan Digby and Bridlington’s Matthew Raybould both on 75.
The afternoon round commenced over 30 minutes early due to the excellent pace of play in the morning, a rare situation in the modern game. Weather conditions were initially unchanged but an increasingly malevolent sky and higher wind speeds appeared ominous for the players. Driving rain followed, making play a game of patience for those in contention and survival for those further down the field.
It appeared play may have to be suspended due to surface water on the putting surfaces but a window of fine, clear weather allowed continuous play. The greens recovered quickly and scores were lower in the afternoon. Scarborough North Cliff’s Simon Boddy posted a fine 72 which gave him 3rd place overall whilst Lockwood couldn’t quite match his morning brilliance with a more sedate 75.
Brid Links’ Daryl Tate, Hessle’s Lewis Blanchard and Scarborough North Cliff’s Tom Duck all posted creditable 74’s, Duck’s score helping him to win the Rob McLeish Cup, awarded to the leading U18 player in the Championship.
As the final groups concluded their round, it was likely that only Wright could stop Lockwood from winning his second title in 3 years needing a 70 to tie and force a playoff. Reaching the turn in 1 over par 37 Wright raced back in 3 under 33 for the 70 he needed to take the combatants back out on to the course for a playoff.
All square after 3 of the 4 holes being played, both players hit their second shots close to the front of the par 5 ninth hole. Wright, playing first, slightly under hit his chip failing to negotiate the ridge protecting the back left pin position, his ball rolled back to the lower level. Lockwood, just on the front edge putted over the ridge before swinging right across the hole and finishing five feet beyond the cup. Wright’s birdie putt was always on the low side but virtually stone-dead for a par leaving Lockwood with a chance of victory.
During the day all competitors had over read the break of this particular putt but local knowledge prevailed as Lockwood’s ball caught the right edge and fell to the bottom for a Championship winning birdie.
East Riding Union President Stephen Thornton and Club Captain Shaun Kavanagh were the presentation party who gave and received thanks for all that Hessle Golf Club had done for making this such a successful event.
|Pos.||Name (Club)||Round 1||Round 2||Total|
*Winner on four hole play-off
CSS: AM = 74 PM = 72