George Leigh and Mullion Are Big County Week Winners

Monday 27th May 2019

CGU Championship Week 2019 Mullion GC

Matt Richards and George Leigh before the start of the Championship Final at Mullion

With the weather gods shining all week long on the Cornwall Golf Union County Championship Week 2019, it was the host club and George Leigh in particular who were the big winners. 16 year old Trevose member and England International Leigh collected his first County Championship title defeating West Cornwall’s 2014 County Champion Matt Richards 5&4 in the 36 hole final on Saturday.

From day one Mullion as host club made it clear they were immensely proud to host this year’s County Week with many little touches combining to ensure the event proceeded very smoothly over an immacutely presented links course thanks to the efforts of Course Manager Gordon Tamblyn and his small team. From tight fairways to pure fast greens the course proved a challenging test for the 850 golfers who played it in preliminary matches as well as the week itself.

In a nice touch the honour of being walking official with the Amateur Championship Final was awarded to Patrick Gilbert (above), the 1979 County Champion and he and the watching spectators were treated to a good final, dominated by Leigh, who had earlier in the week topped the 36 hole qualifying competition with rounds of 69 and 65 for a 6 under par total of 134. Fittingly Richards was second best qualifier just one shot behind on 135 (66 + 68).

George Leigh watches a high ball flight

In the final George won the first hole with a par 3 and from that moment on was never down in the match. He went 2 up on the par 5 fourth hole and increased his advantage on the 6th when the hole was conceded to him. A bogey by Richards on the 7th saw Leigh go 4 up and at the next he further increased his lead. Onlookers feared this might turn into an early bath for Richards but at the 10th as Leigh made a bogey 5, Richards began a fight back which saw him take 4 holes off Leigh on the bounce. At the par 3 11th Richards made birdie and a Leigh lost ball at the 12th was followed by a concession at the 13th which meant Leigh was just the one hole up. The pair then traded pars for two holes before a Leigh birdie at the 16th meant the lead was 2 again. Richards though was determined and made a birdie 3 at the last to reduce the deficit to just one hole at the lunch break.

Matt Richards chips at Mullion's 3rd hole

The second 18 holes commenced with the pair halving the first 5 holes and as the watching crowd swelled a tight finish appeared to be on the cards. The next 4 holes though effectively decided the championship. At the 6th hole - Richards’ nemesis - Leigh increased his lead as his opponent put tee shots out of bounds forcing him to concede the hole. Leigh was now two up. This became 3 up at the very next as a further concession from Richards followed. Leigh, now 3 up, was in the ascendancy and his birdie 2 at the 8th put him 4 up. An eagle 3 at the par 5 9th made it 5 and Leigh was now in touching distance of the title.

George Leigh

The 10th hole was halved in 4s after both had good birdie chances and this was repeated at the 11th after both hit the green but missed putts. Leigh 3 putted the 12th hole to give Richards a glimmer at 4 down, before the pair again halved the 13th in pars. The next and 14th hole (32nd hole overall) was though to be the decider as Richards made a bogey 5 whilst a par 4 meant Leigh became the County Champion.

Becoming Champion was a great performance from Leigh in the week where he was named as one of four players to represent England in the in the Irish Boys’ Amateur at New Forest Golf Club, west of Dublin, from 25-28 June. Before then Leigh will be part of the Cornwall team taking part in the South West Counties Golf Association Championship Week at Parkstone, Dorset from 8th-14th June, whilst In August he will head to America to join the University of Nevada and Las Vegas where he will continue his studies alongside being a part of the UNLV  'Rebels' golf programme.

George Leigh receives the Amateur Championship Trophy from CGU President Mike Ellis

Whilst the County Championship Final was the highlight of the final day of County Week two other finals also took place and Tehidy Park completed a notable double winning both the A and B Team Club Championships.

In the A Team event a morning semi final win against Trevose (2.5 - 0.5) saw them take on Launceston who had defeated Newquay (2 - 1). In the final Tehidy Park saw Launceston off by a 3 - 0 margin.

A Teams:

Tehidy Park: Rob MacGregor, Justin Barnard, Peter Simmons, Tom Chapman, Ian Veale, Matt Lock

Launceston: Richard Jasper Kieran Hancock, Ben Wevill, Ben Delderfield, Peter Dennis, Chris Turner

Trevose: Joe Reynard, Mark Grootz, Carl Burley, Guy Norris, Steve Davies, Craig Thomas

Newquay: Jon Hancock, Aaron Stephens, Nick Stephens, Tom Savage, Adam Herman, Joe Ibbs-George

The B Team Competition semi finals also took place on the Saturday morning and Tehidy Park again faced Trevose and came out 2 - 1 winners. In the other semi last year’s B Team winners Truro defeated St Mellion 2-1 with that match decided on the last green. In the final Tehidy Park beat Truro 2 - 1.

B Teams:

Tehidy Park: Ryan Curnow, Martin Trewhela, J Harvey, Chris Hoyle, Andrew Clotworthy, Paul Collins

Truro: Simon Bray, Martin Rowe, Mike Noble, Darren Murrish, Graham Cowls, Darragh Dunleavey

Trevose: Liam Wilson, Thomas Stephens, Sean Williams, Richard Steer, Dan Abraham, Mike Ellis

St Mellion: Martin Freemantle, Peter Mehigan, Simon Parsons, Phil Greenwood, Richard Thompson, Alan Donaghy

Full A and B Team Results click here

Mullion members perhaps unsurprisingly featured well in the daily competitions staged across the week as Bob Darnell completed a nice double in the Seniors and Founders Cups, before host club Secretary Ray Griffiths claimed the Lawrance Cup with a stableford haul of 43 points. Mullion’s Kyle Fraser, Justin Watters and Thomas Neal also won the Western Morning News Challenge Cup. The West Cornwall pairing of Matthew Hudson and Matthew Strick opened the week with a win in the Royal Cornwall Goblets as they took top spot in the 224 man field, whilst the Perranporth pair of Andrew Barton and Jody Jeffrey topped the field on Tuesday to win the Royal Cornwall Challenge Cup.

Full list of County Week Prize winners:

Sunday - Royal Cornwall Goblets (Foursomes Stableford) Full Results click here

6th           Lindsey Dale & Paul Greet (Mullion)                                    40 points

5th           Robert Casley & Mike Pamphilon (Mullion)                          40 points                             

4th           Ryan Curnow & Michael Mills (Tehidy Park)                         41 points             

3rd           Richard Bunch & Jonty Jenkin (West Cornwall)                    42 points             

2nd          John Garwood & David McDowall (St Mellion)                       42 points

1st           Matthew Hudson & Matthew Strick (West Cornwall)             43 points                                                                                                                             

Monday - The Seniors Cup (Individual Stableford) Full Results click here

5th            Andrew Clotworthy (Tehidy Park)                            37 points

4th           Micky Doust (Mullion)                                             39 points

3rd           Mark Stevenson (Truro)                                           39 points

2nd          David Kneebone (Truro)                                           39 points

1st           Bob Darnell (Mullion)                                              41 points

Monday - The Founders Cup (Individual Stableford)

5th            Andrew Clotworthy (Tehidy Park)                    37 points

4th            Micky Doust          (Mullion)                           39 points

3rd           Mark Stevenson      (Truro)                              39 points

2nd          David Kneebone       (Truro)                             39 points

1st           Bob Darnell                         (Mullion)                41 points

Tuesday - The Royal Cornwall Challenge Cup (Pairs Betterball) Full Results click here

5th           Richard Simmons & Andrew Clotworthy    (Tehidy Park)     44 points

4th           Paul Huckle & Alan McColl                      (Mullion)           43 points

3rd           Nic Avery & Micky Doust                         (Mullion)           45 points

2nd          Jordan Swift (China Fleet) & Tom Julier      (Mullion)           46 points

1st           Andrew Barton & Jody Jeffrey                   (Perranporth)    46 points

Thursday - The Lawrance Cup (Individual Stableford) Full Results click here

5th           Jack Dormand       (Carlyon Bay)                    38 points

4th           Keith Smallman     (Whitsand Bay)                 38 points

3rd           Lewis Jackson       (Porthpean)                       40 points

2nd          Jon Kew                 (Mullion)                           40 points

1st           Ray Griffiths           (Mullion)                           43 points

Friday - The Western Morning News Challenge Cup (Three Man Team - 2 Scores to count) Full Results click here

5th           Jim Oliver, Lewis Jackson, Dave Tregidgo              (Porthpean)         76 points

4th           Dave Holland, Steve Briers, Richie Perrin              (Mullion)              76 points

3rd           Alex Glasson, Seamus Stevens, Mark Hutchings  (West Cornwall)   78 points

2nd          George Popperwell, Jason Peters, Mark Hall          (Mullion)             78 points

1st           Kyle Fraser, Justin Watters, Thomas Neal             (Mullion)             80 points


The Amateur Championship

Winner:              George Leigh                   (Trevose)

Runner Up:         Matt Richards                  (West Cornwall)

Losing Semi Finalists: Richard Jasper (Launceston) and Conor Wilson (Perranporth)   

The Handicap Challenge Cup:

3rd           Matt Richards    (West Cornwall)                 nett 67 & 69 for a nett total of 136

2nd          Peter Simmons  (Tehidy Park)                     nett 69 & 67 also for a nett total of 136

1st           Alan Engall        (Mullion)                            nett 65 & 70 for a nett total of 135           

The Scratch Cup:

3rd          Conor Wilson    (Perranporth)        70 + 65 for a 5 under par total of 135

2nd         Matt Richards   (West Cornwall)    66 + 68 for a 6 under par total of 134

1st          George Leigh    (Trevose)              69 + 65 for a 6 under par total of 134

The Wednesday 36 hole Amateur Championship qualifier was contested by 62 players of whom 5 finished under par - Leigh and Richards (both -6), Conor Wilson (-5), Rob MacGregor (Tehidy Park -5) and Richard Jasper (Launceston -4). Peter Simmons (Tehidy Park) was level par. Mullion GC’s best qualifier was 4 handicapper Alan Engall on a plus 3 total of 143, with this score winning him the Handicap Cup..

Full 36 Hole Qualifying Scores click here

The matchplay knockout phases leading to the final saw few surprises, although Jack Mewton (Perranporth) despatched Joe Reynard (Trevose) by 6&5. Engall bowed out in the top 32 but clubmate Lindsey Dale moved into the quarter finals with wins over Josh Greenaway and Mark Grootz before coming up against a hot Leigh and losing 6&4. The recently returned to the game George Champion (Truro) also made it to the quarter finals before losing 4&3 to Conor Wilson. Wilson was joined in the semis by Richards who beat Kieran Faulkner (Looe) by one hole and the same margin was the difference between Richard Jasper and Rob MacGreor with the former prevailing.

The semi finals were close affairs as Richards beat Wilson by one hole and in the other Leigh had arguably his toughest match eventually seeing off the challenge of Jasper at the second extra hole.

The presentation of prizes took place in a crowded clubhouse. Those present were welcomed by Club Captain Dale Wilson who spoke of how honoured the club were to have hosted the week, especially pleasing as earlier in the year Mullion had won the Cornwall Team Championship. He was proud of the performance of Mullion members across the week and thanked all those amongst the membership who made special and valued contributions to the overall success of the week. CGU President Mike Ellis thanked Mullion and its staff and membership for the fantastic hospitality, organisation and input they had made to what will long be remembered as a great week. He also thanked new sponsors of the CGU in Tribute (St Austell Brewery) and Francis Clark Financial Planning Ltd for their huge part in making the week so successful. Wilson and Ellis then presented the prizes.

CGU County Captain Ian Veale then named and introduced the Cornwall team for the upcoming SWCGA Championship Week; Harry Hall, Matt Richards (West Cornwall), George Leigh, Joe Reynard (Trevose), Richard Jasper (Launceston), Aaron Stephens (Newquay), Kieran Faulkner (Looe), Conor Wilson (Perranporth), Rob MacGregor (Tehidy Park), Josh Greenaway (St Enodoc)

Next year (2020) County Week will take place at Newquay GC from 17th-23rd May.