The 2017 South West Counties Championship (SW Week) is being held in Somerset at Weston-Super-Mare Golf Club. The The Captain Tom Leech has selected the following to represent Dorset: Lee James Broadstone, David Cook & Robbie Mabb Parkstone, Giles Legg & Harry Mitchell Ferndown, Andy Rideout, Harry Collins & Brad Cox Dudsbury, Matt Sandy Sherborne, Callum Ward DG&CC and Sean Dimmick Weymouth. The event gets under way on the Saturday with a practice round for all six counties.
The format of the week is each county plays each other Singles am and Foursomes pm so the order of play is below with the SW Individual Strokeplay Championship and EGU County Qualifier to be played over 36 holes of Stroke Play on the Tuesday. I will endeavour to post the results of each of our matches at the close of play each day to keep you up to date.
So our first match in this year’s Championship and we were up against Wiltshire. The morning saw Lee James lead the way and he did not disappoint with a fine 4&2 win over James Cooper. David Cook found it tough going and Gary Slade played some splendid golf to win 5&4. Harry Collins making his debut found it tough going down 3$2 but Sean Dimmick made a great start in his first SW Week beating Jack Seaman 4&2. Callum Ward lost heavily 7&5 along with Matt Sandy who lost 3&1 both making their debut. Andy Rideout steadied the ship winning 2&1. Robbie Mabb had a tough battle with Jake Bolton losing by 2 holes. So it was 5 – 3 down going into the Foursomes.
Lee and David led the way and their match against James and Gary went right down to the last and when Lee stuck in a great second to the green they won by 2. Andy Rideout and Harry Collins never got going and by the turn were some seven behind and finished on the twelfth going down 8&6. Giles and Harry played steady golf and always seemed in control finally shutting their opponents out on the sixteenth winning 3&2. So we need to win the last match which Saw Robbie and Sean together taking on Jake & Jack. It was nip and tuck all the way and when Sean found the gardens in the fourteenth it was one up to Wiltshire The next two holes were halved and then Dorset won the seventeenth to give the team hope of a possible win. Sean found the rough with his drive of the last but good for them their opponents followed them in after they both found it difficult to get out Wiltshire were on four 3 with Dorset of on the fringe. Robbie chipped back and past by some 6 feet so the Wiltshire pair had a putt to win the match but Jack pushed it some 5 foot past Sean then holed his for a five and with the pressure on Jake’s putt lipped out to give the game and match to Dorset. A great win for the team and a good start for the new Captain.
The other matches Somerset v Gloucestershire & Devon v Cornwall
Monday and we are up against Cornwall. Lee led us away against Joe Cruise and this was a very tight match with no more than one hole in at any one time. Lee won the seventeenth to go one up and then halved the last to get us a well-deserved point. Andy Rideout got off to a real bad start and was soon some 5 down but come the last hole he had a putt to halve the match sadly it lipped and he lost by one. Harry Collins got his first SW point when he beat Richard Jasper 2&1. Sean Dimmick had to dig deep to grind out a half point. Matt Sandy found it tough going against Tom Fox losing by 2 holes. Harry Mitchell won 2&1 and Robbie Mabb lost 3&2 so it left just Giles Legg to try and even things up but he was four down after fourteen and until the fifteenth had yet to win a hole. Boy when he did start to win he gained memento and took the next three with a superb second into the eighteenth securing a half point leaving it 4-4 in the morning.
Lee and David led out for the afternoon Foursome matches and they maintained their winning ways with a fine 5&3 win. It then went downhill for us with Giles and Harry not finding their usual spark against the strong pairing of Matt Richards and Tom Fox who won 5&4. The last pairing of Robbie and Sean never really got going and struggled to hold on to their opponents, who won 6&4. All hopes were then resting on Harry and Callum who from four down but by the thirteenth they had got it back to all square. Unfortunately Callum did a Sean and found the Gardens on the short fourteenth. They were still one down on the seventeenth and they failed to find the green with the third and that was that.
The other matches Wiltshire v Somerset & Devon v Gloucestershire
The SW Individual Championship over the 36 holes finished with Somersets Will Poole being Crowned SWCGA Champion with a fine 10 under par total. Lee James was the best from Dorset on two under. Harry Mitchell was next best on level par.
The team playing in the EG Qualifier: Lee James, David Cook, Giles Legg, Sean Dimmick, Robbie Mabb and Matt Sandy, sadly Dorset finished sixth.
So we got under way today against yesterday EG County Qualifier Winners Somerset with Lee James leading the way against Jonathan Grace Lee took the initiative on the fifth and never really looked in trouble from then winning 5&4. Matt Sandy however never really got s sniff with the newly crowned SW Champion Will Poole still in great form winning 5&4. Robbie Mabb looked out of sorts and from the first was always trailing finally losing by 3&2. Harry Mitchell was up against Tom Plumb who left Dorset to play for Somerset and took the point with a 5&4 victory. Brad Cox who arrived yesterday did well and gave Jamie Clare a good match finally losing on the seventeenth 3&1. Callum lost 3&2 but our last two players rallied to give us a chance in the afternoon single with Andy Rideout beating Jeremy Larcombe 5&4 and with the same winning margin and some very fine play Giles beat Phil White.
Andy Rideout and Matt Sandy led the way and with Birdies on 2, 3 and 4 were in control against Will Poole and Tom Sloman and to be fair never really looked in any trouble taking the match 4&2. Out second was Lee and Robbie against Josh Hilleard and Jamie Clare by the sixteenth they were two down but a birdie on the next and when their opponents found the water on the last they secured a halve. Giles and Harry looked to be cruising when they were 4 up with seven to play but then the opponents turned up the heat and fought hard to win on the last. The last match with Brad Cox and Sean Dimmick against Tom Plumb and Alister Balcombe saw a very tight match that went all the way down to the last with the Somerset pair just winning again by one. So what promised to be looking good at the turn wasn’t to be.
The other matches Cornwall v Gloucestershire & Wiltshire v Devon
The wind was up and blowing as the match against Gloucestershire got under way today. Lee got us under way against Laurie Potter and it was nip and tuck all the way with Lee winning on the seventeenth 2&1. Andy Rideout was always in control of the match and came to the sixteenth 3 up but a missed 3 footer pegged it back to two then he lost the seventeenth and only managed to win when his playing partner Tom Workman three putted the last for a half hand Andy the game. Brad fought hard in this match and pegged it back to only one down on the fifteenth, but Cox out of nowhere hit it so wide on sixteen to lose the hole and went down on the next to lose 3&1. Sean fought hard to get it all square after fourteen and then from nowhere promptly lost the next two holes and halved seventeen to lose 2&1. Harry Collins struggled against Nick Day losing 6&5. Callum lost 3&1, Matt Sandy lost 3&2 just leaving Giles who was fighting hard but after fifteen was 3 down he then won the next two to take it down the last but sadly just missed a fifteen putter to get a half on the last. So a bad morning but it is still possible as they go into the afternoon foursomes.
Well what a great afternoon for the boys who fought hard in every match this afternoon. Lee James and Robbie played some great golf and never gave their opponents any opportunities winning 5&4 Brad and Callum played very well but perhaps will rue a couple of missed chances on the eleventh and twelve but after sixteen they were dormy 2 up they then lost the next and when Ward put Cox out of bounds on the last they had to settle for a halve. Sean and Matt got to dormy 3 on fifteen lost the next but then a great tee shot from Matt and a superb shot to the green from Sean saw and with their opponents in the trap they secured a fantastic 3&1 win just leaving us to win the last match. Harry and Giles came down the fifteenth four up this was similar to yesterday when they lost the fifteenth then the sixteenth so on to the next which left us all biting our nails but Giles sunk the putt to secure his game and the match by a half point. What a win it is not to often we beat Gloucestershire and this was sweet ensuring we will not be transporting the wooden spoon back to Dorset.
The other matches Cornwall v Wiltshire & Devon v Somerset
We are playing Devon sadly Lee James is ill so Harry Collins stepped into the number one slot and did a great job beating Harrison Greenberry 2&1 to get us under way. Matt lost to Peter Lawrence 3&2 which then set a domino effect as then Giles lost 6&5 and so did Sean who lost 3&2. Robbie Mabb lost at the back 4&3 and it was getting hard to see where are next point would come from. Then we found Callum four up with four to play but we then had to endure watching him lose the next three holes with some careless play before he managed to get a halve at the last to win by one. Harry Mitchell was down for most of the round but after some scrappy play secured a half point on the last. Brad Cox fought hard and at one stage looked like he may sneak a point but he and Dan halved to give Dorset 3 point from the morning singles. Our singles play this week has been somewhat lacking but we have managed to play well in the foursomes and this was the case in the afternoon. Giles and Harry led the way but they seemed out of sorts and never really got into their opponents losing 3&2. Robbie and Harry were out last and they played some good golf took control and won comfortably 5&4. So it was now up to the middle two pairs to bring home the win and after twelve we were the wrong side in both but they then dug deep and Matt and Sean came down the last one up, and with Callum and Brad having turned their match around came off seventeen one up, it was looking promising. Matt stuck it to around 15 feet on the last for two and the opponents were inside at around ten. Then with the Devon boys behind sticking their drive out of bounds well, all Sean had to do was hole the putt but it came up short by some 15 inches and the Devon pair rolled theirs in to level the game and secure the match for Devon by a quarter of a point. Such tight margins at the end of a long week of golf, I do congratulate all the players on some fine performances throughout the week.
The other matches Gloucestershire v Wiltshire & Somerset v Cornwall
Lee won the Clifford Burden Trophy at this years SW Week being unbeaten all week and not being well enough to play the last day he hung on even if Somerset sent out some top guns to try and knock him off the top spot! Lee took it on count-back from Wiltshires Jake Bolton. Well done Lee a great assest to the team.