Sunday 2nd September 2018
Match Report and End of Season Appraisal
Team: James Barker (Overstone Park), Mark Bazeley (Northampton), Jack Brown (Brampton Heath), Richard Dalton (Overstone Park), Max Hayward (Staverton Park), Harry Oddy (Northamptonshire County), Taylor Sargeant (Kingsthorpe) and Owen Watts (Northamptonshire County).
Captain: Chris White (Peterborough Milton)
Team Manager: Gary Hardy (Northampton)
The last game of the season was played at Kingsthorpe on a beautiful September Sunday with the 2nd team still seeking a first victory of the campaign, despite being so close on a number of occasions. The team included 2 debutants, meaning that the team had now blooded 5 new players this season, all of whom have come through our junior system. This would also be our last home match at Kingsthorpe after 2 fine years there.
Taylor Sargeant and James Barker were paired together for the first time and sent out first against Martin Holland and Ollie Wright. The Northants pair
Next out were Mark Bazeley and Owen Watts against Craig Russell and Jack Kenyon. Owen and Mark have both won all of the foursomes games they have played this season, including the greatest comeback at Kingsthorpe in the Lincolnshire game, so I thought they would take a lot of beating. This time
Match 3 saw the 2 young debutants paired together in the shape of Harry Oddy and Max Hayward who played Ashley Sizer and Isaac Rowlands. The Northants pair had played together many times previously in the junior teams and there were genuinely no signs of any nerves at any point at all. They raced
Match 4 paired Richard Dalton and Jack Brown together against Josh Austin-Tierney and Tom Rogers. I think it might be fair to say that this game started slowly as a contest but the Northants pair sneaked ahead from the 2nd hole onwards. Getting a lead after a slow start is crucial and the Northants duo soon got away from their opponents, opening a 4 hole lead up by the 8th. They said afterwards that the Cambridgeshire pair started playing a lot better on the back 9 but they were too far behind. It is nice to see a pair in control of a match from the outset and they duly converted their dominance
What a morning. Suddenly we are mint at Foursomes. If only this had been our first game of the season and not the last.
Northamptonshire 4 Cambridgeshire 0
Taylor Sargeant went out top as usual and faced morning opponent Martin Hollands. In a game of a high
Appraisal – a great team player who always volunteers for the hardest game. Good to see him back in the county squad and winning trophies for fun.
Owen Watts played second against stand-in Cambridgeshire captain Tom Rogers. Owen really briefly looked a bit out of sorts and fell a couple of holes behind relatively early on, which given the season he has had was a bit of a surprise. Panic not; after losing the 11th to go 2 down, Owen birdied 12, 13, 14, 15 and 16 to win 3&2. Amazing.
Appraisal – Player of the season without question. I have run out of superlatives.
Mark Bazeley continued the local knowledge in game 3 and played Josh Austin-Tierney. The only
Appraisal – Mark played in 2 games this season and won all of his games. The perfect team player and a role model for the younger players; must play in every game next season.
Max Hayward played against Jack Kenyon in game 4 and looked to continue his fine start to Men’s county golf. Max got up in his game early and played some
Appraisal – should have been picked earlier in the season; another future star.
Harry Oddy played against Isaac Rowlands in game 5 also looking to add to his impressive morning’s work. This game was perhaps a bit more like some of the other ones the team has had the season where it was close all the way
Appraisal – impressive debut and also should have been picked sooner; one to watch for the future.
Jack Brown played Ashley Sizer in game 6 and looked in control from the start. All of Jack’s singles games this season have been really close despite often starting slowly, so when he was 2up through 10 I thought the outcome was inevitable. Jack then surprised me again, with back to back 3 putts on 11 and 12 to go back to All Square. A missed 4 footer and 2 3 putts from Jack Brown, genuinely unheard of and weirdly unnerving,
Appraisal – great team player and unwavering commitment to the cause. Faster starts next year and Jack will be unbeatable.
Richard Dalton played Ollie Wright in game 7 also looking for his 2nd point of the day. Richard has worked hard on his golf game over the last year and is now playing some of his best golf. He got ahead early despite his 200
Appraisal – valued member of the team and works hard to remain ultra-competitive. Also ridiculously good on quiz machines
James Barker played in game number 8 against Craig Russell. Going out 8 did mean a nearly
Appraisal – versatile team player, who has played at every position in the order at some point this season, with a fantastic singles record that is unmatched over the last 10 years.
Northants 5 Cambridgeshire 3
Final Score Northants 9 Cambridgeshire 3
What a lovely way to finish the season.