Sussex Schools Sunday 22nd September 2019
The 15th playing of the Sussex Schools match was again held at West Sussex Golf club and attended by the usual 4 Sussex schools teams of Hurstpierpoint, Brighton, Eastbourne and Lancing. The 2018 event was a wash out after torrential rain on the day and the forecast for this year’s event again did not look promising.
The format is foursomes matchplay for 36 holes and teams of 3 pairs. Hurst were represented by top pair Alex Fleet and Dan Burstow, second pair, George Atkins and Paul Turrell and third pair Tom Fairfax and Chris Hobbs.
The morning round was played under grey skies initially and then showers later in the round. This didn’t stop a great performance by Hurst though. Wins for the top 2 pairs 3&2 and 7&6 respectively. Hobbs and Fairfax battled hard in the bottom match for a half meaning that at lunch Hurst were unbeaten, and top school, ahead of Lancing and Brighton.
A hearty West Sussex lunch washed down with a glass of red or two was welcomed before the afternoon play. I am pleased to say the forecast improved and we were able to play out the afternoon matches dry!
The standard of play was very high in the afternoon. Our top pair of Burstow and Fleet battled hard but went down 2&1 to Lancing A, who had a long-time rival Ross Gilbert on their team. We will get revenge next time no doubt. Second pair of Atkins & Turrell had a high quality match against Brighton B and were able to win the last hole to win 1 up managing to beat a pair that threw four gross birdies at them during the round! That left Hobbs and Fairfax to bring home the bacon with a hard fought 2&1 win in our final match.
With those two wins Hurst pipped Lancing to the trophy by 1 point (half a match!) which avoided the need for a putt off! This is the first victory in the competition for Hurst since 2010 and takes our tally to 4 wins in the competition overall. The squad now move on to the Grafton Finals in Norfolk in 2 weeks and we wish them all the best!
Paul Turrell Capt Sussex Schools Team