Match Result: Kings Hill 2.5 - 1.5 West Malling
Stephen Mallard & James Guard - Lost 3&2
Chris Smith & George Farrington - Won 2UP
Greg Murrock & Richard Francis - A/S
George Hussey & Mark Hutchinson - Won 1UP
Nothing could have encouraged the players at Kings Hill to put their disappointing Guilford Trophy exit behind them, than a league fixture against local rivals West Malling. The team spirit was high on the morning as warm ups were carried out and the match began.
The conditions were favourable with sunny spells and calm winds. The first pair, Steve and James, who had won their match against Mid Kent in the first game, didn't quite find the start they were after. And it proved tough for them to find a way back into the game - against a partnership which had many years of experience behind it. And ultimately, the away side took the first match 3&2.
Chris Smith and team rookie George Farrington had a very tight game. What had been a fairly comfortable 2UP lead was eradicated early on the back 9, thanks to a world famous 'Farrington three putt' on 11, and a huge birdie putt holed on 12 by the visitors. The game remained tight until Chris rolled in two excellent birdie putts on 15 and 17. With a 1UP lead going down 18, George and Chris were able to see the game out to bring Kings Hill level in the match.
Greg and Richard appeared to be in cruise control as made their way through the back 9 after jumping into an early lead. But a late siege from West Malling saw them lose holes 15 and 16 to bring the match back to A/S. This brought a tense finish with everything balanced on knife edge, but Greg and Richard stayed strong and managed to grind out the half.
With the teams tied at 1.5-1.5 after the first three games, the stage was once again set for a grandstand finish in the final group. George and Mark faced tough opponents, who hit them early on the back 9 with birdies on 11 and 12 to take a 2UP lead to thirteen. This is where the comeback began, a confident par from Mark immediately halved the deficit. George kept the game alive with a huge putt for half on 15, before an excellent up and down par save from 90 yards from his partner on 16 brought the match level. With the rest of the squad nervously waiting by the 18th green, the news filtered through that the match was All Square. George Hussey took centre stage making an excellent par from the first cut on the left of the fairway to seal the victory in the final game, and the match. Much like the first game, there were demonstrations of excellent character from the final group, to turn their game around and deliver for the team.
Kings Hill's second win in as many games means that now sit just one point behind league leaders Faversham, owing to the fact that they won away from home at Bearsted. Well done to everybody on a great start to this season.
To view the current league standings, click here.