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By Trevor Greenfield SCGU Captain 


 L-R Trevor Greenfield (County Captain), Wayne Hawes, Stuart Barber, Sam Hayward, Chris Jess,
Ashley Rees, Rob Bury, JJ Grey, Bradley Turner, James Doswell and Jonny Ingram.


Ten members of the Sussex Men’s Elite Squad flew to Bonmont in northern Spain in the shadows of the mountains of the Sierra del Montsant on the 10th March for some early season warm weather training. The venue is used by Lindfield Golf College to tutor their students through February and March and their presence provided a valuable competitive edge to the trip. Sussex students attending the College joined forces with the visiting Sussex Men to set up a 3 day 18 a side match.

Friday morning started bright and early with Sussex’s most experienced member of the trip Wayne Hawes setting an example and enjoying the morning sun by commencing practice at 6.30am! He was soon joined by the rest of the team and the morning was spent on the range under the watchful eye of the Squad Coach, Tim Spence.

Competitive play commenced in the afternoon with a 4 ball better ball match against the College. The college students had been playing Bonmont for the previous 4 weeks and knew the course well. That said the Sussex men combined well. Wins for Ashley Rees and Sam Hayward, Stuart Barber and Jonny Ingram, Chris Jess and Brad Turner, and college lads Matt Campbell and Louie Paske, put us in a good position on day one. That left Selsey’s Tom Aspital to carry yours truly to a half and an overall half over the first days play.

As we sat eating our supper, and unfortunately as forecast, the skies began to open and down came the rain. It chucked it down all night and when we awoke it was still chucking down! It persisted all day and we soon realised why the barrancas that dissected the course were there, as they filled with raging torrents of water. Ok, a slight exaggeration, but none of us had witnessed rain like it before! As you will appreciate from the pictures, the second days was abandoned which gave the guys a great opportunity to spend the day working out in the Clubs excellent gym!

After a quiet night in, we awoke on Sunday to blue skies, brilliant sunshine and most remarkably, a virtually dry golf course!  It was a special day as JJ Grey of ESN was celebrating his 18th birthday. The boys were raring to get out on the course because of the previous days frustrations.

Chris Jess and Jonny Ingram started aggressively winning 5/4 and 2up respectively. Sussex’s 3rd win came from youngster Brad Turner who continued the cracking form he showed for the County in 2010 with a 6/5 win, playing the tough front nine at Bonmont under par.

The course knowledge that the Lindfield boys had developed then began to tell. With Sussex stalwarts Wayne Hawes and James Doswell being narrowly defeated by Jack Marsh and Lindfields order of merit leader, Alex Dixon, the scores began to narrow.

Stuart Barber was as reliable (on the course anyway!) as ever, and played well to win 2 up. Sussex youngsters Matt Campbell and Ben Johnson also added to our tally. However, after Ifield's Sam Hayward was pegged back to a half, and Ashley Rees injury hit season continued resulting in an honourable half, the Lindfield youngsters sneaked a narrow 14.5/12.5 victory.

The trip provided competitive early season practice which will prove to be invaluable when we begin our 2011 campaign in May against arch rivals Surrey at the Nevill.

Our thanks go to coach Tim Spence and Lindfield’s Paul Lyons for providing us the opportunity to join them at Bonmont.


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  The tricky par 3 5th at Bonmont bathed in beautiful sunshine.
It will never last, the English are here.
That's a bit more like it. Anyone for Scrabble!!


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Fortunately the rains subsided and Ifield’s Sam Hayward could get back on the range.  A view from the 16th at Bonmont with the stunning back drop of the Sierra del Montsant mountains there to inspire.
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