Brampton Park hosted the County A’s 3rd Anglian League match of the season against Suffolk. After an undefeated start to the season for both sides, this match was crucial for both side’s title aspirations.
Captain Ed Dimambro lead the side off with Danny Loveday, followed in match 2 by our foursomes champions Luke Ryan and Tom Rogers with the Ramsey stalwarts Craig Thorburn and Paul Hodgkin reunited in match 3. Our most experienced pairing of past captain Owen Davies and Toby Crisp went out last.
The top match got off to a quick start and quickly held a 2 up lead which was maintained until the 13th hole before a Suffolk fight back from Biggs and Scowsill, along with a couple of loose shots down the stretch from the CAGU pairing saw Suffolk take the top match 2&1.
Ryan and Rogers raced to a 4 up advantage early on .On the 13th Ryan’s second shot flew the green and an awesome chip from Rogers managed to half the hole. The Suffolk pairing of Hail and Fricker fought back with a birdie on the 14th and 15th to cut the lead to 2. On the 16th Suffolk hit a poor tee shot and hit their second long. Ryan hit his 4 iron to 75 yards from the green and Rogers hit the wedge to 15 foot for Ryan to hole the putt for birdie and seal the win 3&2.
In the third pairing, the reunited Ramsey pairing of Thorburn/Hodgkin made hardly any mistakes all round.Thorburn’s putter was hot all round and they secured a 2&1 win against Fleming and recently crowned Suffolk county champion Islam.
The final match saw a late charge from the pairing of Crisp and Davies who were 2 down with 3 to play that saw them take the 16th and 17th to leave theM A/S heading down 18. The Suffolk pairing of past captain Cardy and Debenham were able to make a fine birdie to close this match out 1 up to send the teams to lunch tied at 2-2.
Ryan led the team off in the afternoon singles, taking on Scowsill. Ryan was 3 down after 3 holes and despite putting the pressure on his opponent with some bold play he lost 3&2. Dimambro was involved in a tough game out against 2018 Lagonda Trophy winner Biggs, who had a stretch of 4 birdies over 6 holes from the 5th to go 3 up through 11. On the 12th the fightback started with Dimambro making birdie on 2 of the next 4 holes to go all square. They then entered the tough final 3 holes and Biggs rolled in a 30 foot putt for birdie on the 16th before Dimambro followed him in with his own 15 foot putt to stay all square. Dimambro hit a poor tee shot on the 17th, but then hit a 5 iron from 225yds around several trees to 30 feet to put the pressure on his opponent. Biggs missed the green long right and failed to get up and down. This left Dimambro 1 up in the match heading
down the last. A solid approach to 10 feet followed by a great putt for birdie from Dimambro meant a 2 up win for the captain.
Loveday ran into an inform Islam and lost 7&5. Crisp was involved in a tight battle with Fricker and a 12 foot putt on the 17th got him back to all square . The match then finished all square on the 18th . Hodgkin was in fine form against Halil and started with birdies up the 2nd and 4th holes to get to 3 up through the first 4 holes. He was 2 under par but Halil drew him back to be all square through 11 holes. Hodgkin then got back to 1 up and holed a crucial putt from 15 feet on the 14th to keep the
momentum going and eventually won 2&1.
Rogers was closed out 3&1 by Fleming and the match was heading for a draw. That was until the stars of our Norfolk victory delivered the goods again. Thorburn was in invincible form and this was summed up by the wedge he hit into the 16th to a foot to secure the win 4&2.
At the back Davies used his experience, with many years of county golf to start with a birdie on the treacherous 1st hole. He never looked back and won 3&1 which meant the county won the singles 4.5 – 3.5 and the overall result was a Cambridgeshire win 6.5 – 5.5
This result means Cambridgeshire lead the Anglia league with 3 wins. Cambridgeshire have now a big chance of winning the league against Leicestershire at Links GC on Sun 4th August.
Thanks must go to Richard Beadles and everyone from Brampton Park who were wonderful hosts as usual. The course was presented in great condition and was a good test for both sides. Our attention now turns to Sunday 4th August where a victory against Leicestershire & Rutland at Links, Newmarket would secure our 1st team the Anglian League title for the first time since 2013.