Stirling performance for Lancashire

LANCASHIRE county captain Paul Williams has praised the contribution of the new faces in the team.

The Red Rose line-up for the latest Daily Telegraph Northern Counties League outing featured three players making their debuts.

The match against Cumbria at Manchester saw Formby’s Anthony Stirling (pictured) make his first full appearance, fresh from his top 10 finish in the Lancashire County Championship at Lancaster, alongside Mark Hyde (Southport & Ainsdale), winner of the Batty Trophy for the best 36-hole score at the same event.

Anthony Stirling.jpgThe third newcomer was Aiden Hoosen, from Manchester Golf Club.

All three picked up points in the singles as Lancashire mounted a spirited fightback after a disappointing start in the morning foursomes.

They trailed 1½ – 4½ at the break but won the afternoon singles 7-5 to miss out by just 8½ – 9½ in the final reckoning.

Stirling claimed a notable scalp in the singles with a 2&1 success over the vastly experienced Nicky Bell, the Cumbria county matchplay champion, while Hyde overcame Jon Clarke 4&3. Hoosen took a half from his match against James Atkinson.

The narrow loss followed a surprising 5½ – 12½ defeat to Northumberland at Bolton Old Links in the opening match of the season as the county continues to rebuild for the future.

Williams explained: “We have lost some players to the pro ranks and due to commitments we are missing some familiar and experienced players, so this is a period of transition for the county team.

“It’s encouraging that we have a number of exciting, young players coming through the squads and with the right encouragement and support they can adjust to the demands of playing county golf.

“Anthony, Mark and Aiden all did well in their singles matches, which will be a boost for their confidence. We must as a team, however, focus and improve on our foursomes performances.”


FIXTURES: June 21 Bell Trophy (Lytham Green Drive); June 26 Lanca  shire Seniors v Cheshire (Royal Lytham); June 26 Cheshire Boys v Lancashire Boys (Caldy); July 5 EGU Northern Boys qualifying round (Warrington); July 9 Cheshire v Lancashire (Bramall Park); July 10 U16, U15, U14 Boys v Durham (Burnley)




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