The first day of the County Championships saw 72 of the county's best male players take to the course in a 36-hole medal play qualifier. The greenkeepers were up before dawn to double cut and roll the greens and prepare the bunkers after a night of heavy rainfall. Although the wind never blew, the players battled persistent rain all day as they traversed the immaculately presented Northwood GC. Scoring reflected the difficult conditions with just one score of even par posted in the morning. Just two back at +2 was defending champion, Jack Neill, and back-to-back Gowland Salver winner, Niall Keogh.
The trio of Jack Neill, Dan Parsons, and David Ryan with scores of 73, 76, and 77 respectively, gave Ealing GC a six shot lead in the Team Club Championship over Enfield GC.
The rain carried on into the early part of the afternoon round but again the wind never got up and flags lay limp all day. As the rain subsided perfect scoring conditions emerged for the late starters. The scoring got better and better as the afternoon went on. Ian Ashenden, Justin Phelps, and Niall Keogh all took advantage of the benign conditions and posted scores in the red to secure places in the KO stages. Niall Keogh, Sudbury GC, notched up six birdies to post an impressive 68 and claim medallist honours. Meanwhile, a play-off was needed to decide who earned the last spot in the KO stages. Kumar Starkie-Gupta of Stanmore GC and Daniel Parsons of Ealing GC tied at 155 (+13) and went to sudden death. It was Danial who prevailed after finding the green in two with two beautiful irons and Kumar finding the water off the tee. The final results of the qualifier can be viewed HERE and the draw for the match-play stages can be viewed HERE.
In the Team Stroke Play Championship, the Northwood GC team consisting of Ian Ashenden, Justin Phelps, and Robbie Johnson had a fabulous second round of 211 (-2) to leapfrog Ealing GC and take home the spoils with an impressive eight shot victory.
Andre Bothma of Pinner Hill GC had the low nett in Round 1 (70) and Ian Ashenden of Northwood GC had the low nett of Round 2 (68).