Ireland came up just short in the Senior Home Internationals as team England ran out winners after a convincing comeback win over team Scotland.
Ddespite a final day victory over Wales at West Kilbride GC which wasn’t enough to secure the coveted overall title as England pipped them with a brilliant afternoon comeback over the Scots.
Having lost to England on Tuesday before bouncing back against Scotland yesterday, the Irish team knew that a win over the Welsh could give them a chance of taking home top honours, after Wales’ tie with England left only a half point separating England and Ireland going into today’s action.
Ireland came flying out of the blocks in the morning foursomes, as Dooks’ Tracy Eakin and Beaufort’s Lisa Cullen put the first point on the board with a dominant 5&4 win. This was followed by Karl Bornemann (Douglas) and Peter Sheehan (Ballybunion) taking Match Two 3&2, before Deirdre Walsh (Milltown) and Alison Taylor (Malahide) secured another point for Ireland with a 1 Hole victory. However, Wales fought back and took all of the available points from the remaining three foursomes matches, putting the sides level at 3-3 heading into the afternoon singles.
The in-form Eakin again led Ireland out, and showed her class once more with her second 5&4 win of the day. Ireland would fail to win any of the next five matches, as Bornemann and Laura Webb (Royal Portrush) salvaged halves, with Wales taking the other three points.
Thankfully for Ireland, the finishers sent out in the second half of the singles draw delivered the points when called upon. Four of the last six matches went the way of the Irish, and included an impressive 5&4 win for David Mulholland (Castlerock), whilst Taylor notched up her second point of the day, winning 3&2.
In the last match out, Banbridge’s Jim Carvill added another half point to the scoreboard to conclude the match at Ireland 9.5 – 8.5 Wales.
Attention then turned to whether or not the Scots could do Ireland a favour. Unfortunately, it wasn’t to be, as England recovered from a morning’s foursomes deficit of 3.5-1.5 to turn the match around and win out 10.5-7.5, in doing so claiming the overall Senior Home Internationals crown.
Ireland’s disappointment was compounded as the Women were pipped by their English counterparts on Match Points. Both countries had a pair of wins to go with their own tied match, however England’s tally of 17 Match Points was one better than that of Ireland.
In the Men’s, it was Scotland who topped the table after an unbeaten run that saw them dispatch of Wales and England, but only manage a tie with Ireland, who themselves ended the tournament in last position on 0.5 points.