On the 6th April 2019 the annual A team match verses Mitcham golf club was played.
The troops gathered early to be greeted by some extremely appreciated coffee and a warm welcome from Kevin Simpson (Scratch Captain) and Dennise Coker (Secretary).
It was clear that Kevin was trying to steal an early advantage by gathering 9 players for an 8 a side match - claiming had had “lost count” during his team selection process!! He ruthlessly cut a player from his squad, and assembled his pairings.
The first match saw Ben Palmer and Ben Davies of Surrey A play Ian “Seve” Seymour and Josh Stone of Mitcham. It was an epic encounter that saw “The Bens” recover from 3 down after 13 to snatch a half.
Steve Harding and Mark Flitton teed off in the second match - Everyone on the first tee was in awe of the fairway splitting 300 yard drive from Mark - his first ever shot whilst representing the county - a great start…. They were playing Barry Seymour and Terry Brown of Mitcham. Another excellent game - with lots of birdies shared. Mitcham were the the eventual victors 2/1.
The third match was saw Keith Collins and Michael Smith of Surrey play Reiss Turrell and Jamie Tuck of Mitcham. The “Old and New” combo for Surrey seemed to work perfectly as they cantered to a 4/3 victory. The fact that I threatened Reiss (an ex pupil from my school) with a detention if he carried on playing well - may or may not have had a bearing on the result!!
I played in the final match with my good mate John Sharp against Kevin Simpson and Sam Turner. Under the watchful eye of the enthusiastic gallery of Steve McNeill and Dennise Coker, we threw 6 bogeys at them in the first three holes and were quickly 3 down. Kevin and Sam played really nicely - and fortunately John and I also recovered things. A late rally saw us take them to the last hole after being 4 down on the 13th tee. A sublime up and down from the green side bunker from Kevin eventually secured the win for Mitcham by 1 hole.
The overall match score was 2.5 to 1.5 in favour of Mitcham. This was disappointing from a Surrey A perspective - but we quickly consoled ourselves over a beer and Ham, egg and chips.
Many thanks to Mitcham for your wonderful hospitality - we are already plotting our revenge in the 2020 fixture!!
Steve McNeill (County Secretary - who supported us all morning - Many thanks!) had the last word of the speeches and correctly pointed out that the real winner of the day was “Golf”.
Surrey A Captain