Middlesex Senior's final fixture of the 2021 season was the England Golf South East Group Foursomes qualifier at South Herts Golf Club, on Friday 27th August. In an interesting format, a team of five foursomes pairs play morning and afternoon, with four total counties in action, Middlesex, Kent, Essex and Hertfordshire. Middlesex pairings were Simon Westgarth & Nick Clarke, John Fletcher & Matt Bayford, CK Lee & Gary Carter, Dave Hale & Martin Walsh and Gary Nash & Andy Sutton.
The course was in splendid condition, albeit the greens were unusually slow for South Herts. The first match of the day belonged to Westgarth & Clarke, who made a barnstorming start against the Essex lead pair, going 6 up thru the first seven holes. They maintained this lead at the turn, completing the first nine one under par. A trip to the woods on 11 was soon forgotten, when Clarke chipped in from the back of the green on 14 to claim the first points of the day for Middlesex, with a thumping 6&4 win.
Fletcher & Bayford battled valiantly against another Essex pair, but fell at the 17th 2&1. Captain CK & Gary Carter claimed a treasured point though, taking down a strong Essex pairing. Hale & Walsh and Nash & Sutton did not fare so well though, going down 5&3 and 4&3 respectively. All was not lost, however, with Middlesex still in the hunt at lunchtime. The halfway scores were 3 each for Kent and Herts and 2 each for Essex and Middlesex, these are heady times indeed.
Despite being last out, Nash & Sutton were the first back in the afternoon, with an incredible 9&7 victory, thrusting Middlesex into the clubhouse lead on goal difference.
It was clear things were not going to be so easy in the afternoon for Westgarth & Clarke, being pitted against former England International Richard Partridge and Niall Cameron, ex-Royal St Georges head pro. The Middlesex pair were unfazed, and Clarke put on a short game masterclass, despite being the only comprehensively educated boy in the fourball. In a very tight game with some fine golf all around, the Middlesex pair went 2 up after 15, before fading in the last 3 holes to end up with a half.
Despite the obvious excitement, it was sadly not meant to be in the end, with the other 3 matches on the course going against Middlesex. Hale & Walsh were unlucky in the afternoon and played well against a tough Hertfordshire pairing. It was Hertfordshire who won the day in the end with 6 1/2 points, closely followed by Kent on 6 points. Essex had 4 points and despite us bringing up the rear with 3 1/2 points, there were smiles across the Middlesex teams faces. We've shown that we are a team on the up and are looking with great relish forward to next season. Senior's golf is ace!
Full results can be viewed on the senior's page HERE.
Thanks to Middlesex Golf for their continuous support to our senior's team through the year. We are looking forward to having similar support next season from you and the county.
CK Lee - Men's Senior Team Manager