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On what turned out to be a pleasant but breezy afternoon the day looked like it was going to be autumnal. Squally showers with a gusting wind, sloping greens and several head scratching pin positions at Saddleworth would ensure that the players would have to focus.

Our opponents East Riding bristling with confidence as table toppers wouldn’t be used to slopes on their greens but they brought with them a wealth of experience. Alan Wright on his 191st appearance coupled with Rich Webster on his 98th!

The plan was set, the combatants assembled, new pairings in 5 foursomes including a debut for Isaac Turner. Away we go!

 Tupman and Broadley lead, Colcombe and Martin, Turner and Hunt, McLean and McAspurn, Fairhurst and Hare and Barron and Crowther at the back. The East Riding has many familiar faces and quality golfers and a close series of games was anticipated.  Steve Martin and Matthew Colcombe were back in the clubhouse before I got to watch any golf and equally as quick were Hunt and Turner both winning early. A super start, Broadley and Tupman were in more of a tussle, losing the 14th to go all square they then birdied 16 and 17 to win their match 2 and 1. Fairhurst and Hare having won 16 to go all square then played poorly down 17 to gift the hole to Wright and Webster who didn’t let go up the last. Alan and Rich securing East Ridings only points in the foursomes. Meanwhile the Mc’s (Lean and Aspurn) were winning their match 3 and 1 just leaving Ben Crowther and Fergus Barron to complete the set. In a topsy turvy match they won the 17th to go 1 up and having waited for the second singles match to play their seconds to the first hole Ben drove and with a slice of luck hitting a tree or post his ball was still in bounds. A solid par retaining the 1 hole lead and HHDUCG lead 10 – 2.

Greaves had his “galacticos” of Tupman, Colcombe, Broadley and Martin as his first four. With umpteen PS Cockcroft’s and Match play titles between them a good start was ensured just like the first two matches. Aaargh the plans of mice and men.  All four lost at various stages and you could see the confidence in the East Riding players rise and with no good news arriving in Greaves ear doubt eked into his head. This wasn’t helped by the fact Josh McAspurn had turned his already bad ankle in the middle holes and was limping his way round. The flow needed to be quelled, Andy Hare would provide some solace (only at the last) but it was Tom Hunt that calmed his nerves. Smashing drives straight and true birdieing the 17th to win 2 and 1, his opponent suggesting he was 2 under when losing. Next up Isaac Turner (hidden at number 6, that was the plan), thoroughly enjoying his day, no nerves, exemplary golf birdieng 14, 16, 17 and the last to win his match 1 up and in doing so ensuring HHDUGC had got to 19 points. Prior to Isaac’s finish Andy Hare had to’d and fro’d with his opponent Nick Raybould both playing golf that could only be described as ordinary, Andy not completing either 16 or 17 to give his opponent  1 up lead on the 18th tee. The “2 best shots he hit all day” he said followed by 2 putts, a birdie, a halved match. Great stuff.

By the time Greaves returned to the 14th fairway Jim Fairhurst had completed a fine win over Alan Wright 6 and 5 and Graham McLean was to win the 14th and gain a 5 and 4 victory. Down the 16th fairway to see Josh McAspurn hobble off the 15th green to a buggy having sealed a superb win over Rich Webster 4 and 3.

Two matches left on the course involving the reliable battlers of Barron and Crowther, Barron 1 down with 2 to play and Crowther 1 up with 2 to play. Barron birdies 17 to go all square but a bad lie in a fairway bunker at the last sealed his fate and loses his match 1 down. “Big” Ben hoping to finish earlier than the last in any match loses the 17th to a birdie and pars at the last means he halves his game.

The singles after an indifferent start were shared 12 all. Relief, joy and excitement at the result for Greaves and for the squad that is beginning to develop. With the experienced players getting a new lease of life and the youngsters coming through the next game can’t come quick enough.

Harrogate next on 9th July who beat Bradford. After the 3 round of results HHDUGC lie 5th in the table.  Sheffield beat Leeds to be the only unbeaten team in the league.



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