Knowle Golf Cub was the venue for the first competitive inter-county match in 18 months. The weather was fair and sunny and the course was in great condition as Stephen Butterfield captained the Somerset team in their first match of the year.
In match one, Stephen Butterfield (Captain) and Iain Robertson played against Sam Collins and Mike Jeffrey. This was a very good game played in a friendly spirit with lots of banter. Somerset went three up but the Gloucestershire team battled back to level. However, the Somerset boys came through in the end to win by 3&1 for the start of a very good day.
In match two, Keri Allchurch and Roger Gazzard enjoyed the lovely company of Derek Buttler and Bill Hole. Gloucestershire went ahead early but the Somerset boys were always behind in this game before losing by 4&3.
In match 3, Marcus Woodward and Rob Hirons had a very good game played in great spirit against the Gloucestershire pairing of Eric Millard and Geoff Lowe although the Gloucestershire team claimed the Somerset boys were too young! Overall a lovely day with Somerset winning by being 2 up (and Marcus remains undefeated in his matches for Somerset Golf Captain).
In match four, the Wells pairing of Phil Slater and John Chillington enjoyed the most enjoyable afternoon with the great company of Jim Ford, the Gloucestershire Secretary, and Keith Ashenhurst. The scores went to and fro with neither side being more than one hole to the advantage – until the very end where Somerset eventually won 2 up.
In match five, Phil Barrett and Chris Warcup played against John Cummings and Colin Stokes. This was a very good game but the Somerset team was simply beaten by a much better pair on the day and lost by five and three.
In match six, Rob Fear and Robert Hardy enjoyed a great afternoon in the splendid company of Ian Smith and Nick Broady. This was only spoilt by Rob Hardy deciding to turn up on the last two holes with his shots and steal the match when Somerset well one up.
In match seven, Mark Moorfoot and Tony Taylor enjoyed excellent and generous opponents in Steve Shepherd and Mark Robinson who were real gentleman. Mark was grateful for a partner able to findmost of the fairways and Somerset 3&2.
In the final match, President (and match manager) Bob Acland played with newcomer Kevin Blakeley and this was a most excellently competitive match against Paul Mason and Dave Sturman. Gloucestershire always managed a birdie to on the par-3’s is to hold off the Somerset boys (three birdies on consecutive par threes). Kevin won the final two holes with a par and a birdie to halve the match.
And so the final result was Somerset 5 1/2 and Gloucestershire 2 1/2 : which meant that Somerset retained the “Somerglo” trophy.
Everyone thoroughly enjoyed the day thanks to a very hospitable Gloucestershire team, the good weather and an especially fine three course meal to finish the day.
The first competitive match in 18 months ended with the first golf club shower during the same period, and (for many) the first indoor beer).
Let’s hope for more days like this in the months ahead