Both teams arrived at Rushden to find the fairways in dry mint condition and electric trolleys and buggies allowed on the fairways. Well done Rushden staff.
Our Foursomes pairings were Sam Gilkes and Andy Saunders, Kai Raymond and Jacob Williams, Harry Brown and James Gardner and Ben Hawkins and Captain Sam Bird.
A fast start was needed and that is what we got. In match 1 we were 3 up after 5, 2nd match 1 up after 4, match 3 all square playing the 5th. Match 4 1 up after 4 and in good shape on the 5th.
Later on match 1 was 2 up after 9, Match 2 3 up playing the 9th but Warws birdied the 9th to leave us 2 up after 9. Match 3  all square after 9. Match 4, 2 up playing the 9th but a par was enough for Warws to reduce our lead to 1 up.
At this stage a lead after the morning foursomes was looking a good bet.
We were still 2 up in the first match on the 14th tee. Match 2 were 2 up on the 14th green but lost this hole to go only 1 up. Match 3 had gone 2 down by the 13th tee so after the turn they had lost a couple of quick holes.
1st match then changed round with Warws taking a slender lead late in the round.on the 16th hole with a birdie 3. Match 2 still level after 15 and a half on 16 left the match level.
Match 3 we lipped out to go 3 down having got hit by good play on the back 9. Match 4, 2 up after 15 with a good chip from Ben and a putt from Sam.
In the end the first match lost 1 down, 2nd match finished all square, 3rd match lost 3 and 2 although our 2 debutants played well. Match 4 closed out their game 3 and 2 to leave us 1 1/2 - 2 1/2  down at lunch.
Warwickshire by now had learned how to play the tricky early holes at Rushden GC. and Sam was hit with his opponent Will Bailey playing some stunning golf to take a 6/5 win.
Jacob at 2 fought all the way against Mike Pell and despite playing well, he couldnt quite pull his opponent back losing 1 down.
Andy at 3 had a real battle going 2 down around the turn, levelling 2 holes later only to go 2 down again. He fought all the way, eventually going down 2/1.
Debutant and U18s Captain, Kai Raymond, put his good golf swing to good use and he ran out a 5/4 winner against Matt Rogers.
James Gardner was hit early by his opponent and was soon well down, however James was warming to the task and wouldn't lay down. He slowly was winning or halving holes but a long putt by his opponent Paul Walker sealed the match for Warws 2 and 1.
Harry Brown played some really good golf and was up for most of his round. He was one up on Tom Shiels playing the last only for his tee shot to go long. He chipped up to about 10 feet and his opponent had a trick downhill chip which he put to 15 inches, Harry missed his putt so the match ended all square. A good effort from Harry and he will learn from this experience. Sam at 7 was playing well but probably trying too hard.and his match ran away from him after the turn. Paul Dakin winning 5/4.
At the back, Ben Hawkins was never in danger and closed his singles out 3/2.
Singles were lost 2 1/2 - 5 1/2
Match result an 8 - 4 win for Warwickshire but some valuable experience for some of our fringe players. 
As usual, many thanks to Paul and the staff at Rushden Golf Club for looking after us all so well. County U18s played there recently followed by the Ladies on the following day in their Roses events, then the 2nds in this match. Everyone was delighted with how they were treated by the management.

Matches Northamptonshire Result Points Warwickshire Result Points


Sam Gilkes

Andy Saunders

Will Bailey

Jack Sharp

1up 1

Kai Raymond

Jacob Williams

Half 0.5

Mike Pell

Matt Rogers

Half 0.5

Harry Brown

James Gardner

Shaun Young

Paul Walker

3&2 1

Ben Hawkins

Sam Bird

3&2 1

Tom Shiels

Paul Dakin




1 Sam Gilkes

Will Bailey 6&5 1
2 Jacob Williams

Mike Pell 1up 1
3 Andy Saunders

Jack Sharp 2&1 1
4 Kai Raymond 5&4 1 Matt Rogers

5 James Gardner

Paul Walker 2&1 1
6 Harry Brown Half 0.5 Tom Shiels Half 0.5
7 Sam Bird

Paul Dakin 5&4 1
8 Ben Hawkins 3&2 1 Shaun Young