SEG Group set up the new League in 2017 and 7 Counties are involved split into two groups - we are with Kent and Hampshire with the other group being Essex, Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Middlesex. The League is age linked and players must be between 18 and 25. The two groups play each other and the winner of each group plays the Final on a neutral course later in the year.
We played our first match away to Hampshire at Sherfield Oaks GC. The foursomes went well and we were up 2.5 to 1.5 at lunch. The afternoon did not go well and we made some mistakes on a fiddly course where shot management is important - we lost the singles 6-2 so overall lost 7.5 to 4.5.
The team was Kevin Lee (C), Scott Murray, Tommy Bentley, Sam Wood, Ben Stokoe, Lawrence Courtney, Killian McGinley and Charlie Crockett.
Our second match was home against Kent and we hosted it a Cuddington which was in great condition for us. We knew we had to respond after our Hampshire defeat and started very strongly by winning the foursomes 4-0. Kent re-grouped with some hard words at lunch from their coach and beat us 4.5 to 3.5 in the singles but the overall score was a win to us of 7.5 to 4.5.
The team was Charlie Crockett, Liam Cox, David Gurr, Chris Thomas, Cavan Mallon, Ben Stokoe, Kevin Lee and Tommy Bentley.
There was some fantastic golf from both sides on the day and Conor Byers from Kent was 5 under when he won his match on the 14th hole. Kent had a very strong team and in the practice round Mason Essam was aiming for a 59 but shot 61 so it shows the standard of their team but we also played extremely well and won on the day.
We now have to wait until the Hampshire/Kent match to see if we have made it through to the League Final.
We have a great squad of players in this age group and are very strong. During the two matches we used 12 players and have a similar amount we couldn't use but the plan is to play 2 or 3 friendly matches each year as well so we can give more players a chance to represent the County.