Sussex County Golf Union
Sponsored by

(Left to right) Alex Hughes (back row) Austin Hayes, Alex Piper, Jake Sage, Mark Taylor, Harri Belfield, Alfie Britland

Following on from their runners up finish at the South East regional final, REGC junior team had just 1 week to prepare for the national final being played this year at Five Lakes Golf Resort in Essex. Team manager and assistant professional at REGC Laurence Collier had a busy couple of days arranging travel and accommodation but all fell into place and the squad of 7 players was ready to go.

Following the practise round Laurence selected the six players who would tee off the next morning in the finals, leaving Alex Hughes as the reserve in case of any unforeseen problems. On a cold blustery morning near the Essex coast, REGC arrived at Five Lakes along with 11 other clubs from across England for this year’s national final.

First on the tee for REGC was18 year old Mark Taylor (hcp 3) who got the team of to a great start with a 3 over par round of 75 (net 72) on this testing 6800 yard course. Having let a few shots slip on the front 9, Mark produced a fine 2 under par back 9 including a birdie at the final hole. Next out was Alex Piper aged 16 who despite a closing hole double bogey played very well and  finished with a round of 78 (net 73).  The younger team members, Alfie Britland (hcp 17), Jake Sage (hcp 19,) Austin Hayes (hcp 24) and Harri Belfield (Hcp 25) have been stalwarts of this year’s junior team but this was their first time in competition at a national level. All four of them stuck to the task right until the final putt dropped, but struggled in the strengthening wind to finish a few shots adrift of their handicaps.

With 1 gross score and 4 net scores to count Royal Eastbourne finished in a creditable fourth spot, 17 shots behind a very strong team from West Essex Golf Club who retained the trophy they won in 2010.