Default, other results put St Clair well ahead
St Clair looks certain to host the final of the men’s Senior A pennant series in mid-July after two results at the weekend gave the team a healthy lead at the top of the points and games table.
North Otago defaulted to St Clair, giving the leading team three points and a maximum of six games, to amass 19 points and 30 games after seven rounds.
Despite having a game in hand, Otago Blue has only 13 points and 22.5 games after being held to a draw by the home team at Chisholm Links on Saturday.
Otago Blue will need to win all of its remaining matches by solid margins, including beating St Clair at St Clair in the penultimate round of the series.
Evan then, St Clair should emerge with a superior game tally, leading to a repeat of last year’s final.
For Otago Blue, No1 Nick Borren was in good form, carding four birdies in his sub-par round and beating Kyle Geary 6 and 5. But Kyle’s brother Sean Geary evened the score, downing Michael Smith 3 and 1 despite a late fightback by the Balmacewen No2. Links’ captain Mark Collie gave his team its second win at the expense of Daniel Elder in a match which finished on the 16th green. Ben Patston (No4) and Tyrone Ratahi (No5) ensured at least a tie, beating Peter Rae and Matthew Heaton by 3 and 2 margins. The Chisholm tail wagged, as Brent Butler secured an early win over Jason Hughes 4 and 3.
In the mid-table battle, the match at Balmacewen yesterday was a tight tussle, finishing in a draw between Otago Gold and Island Park. For Otago Gold, Ben Turner and Murray Edgar posted 6 and 5 wins but Michael Minty, Andrew Hobbs and Michael Wray put the Waldronville team in with a chance of victory. The result came down to the battle between the No1 players. Balmacewen’s Jimmy Phillips was one ahead with three holes to play. Park’s Karl Horsnall won the 16th to even the match but Phillips went ahead again when Horsnall’s approach to the 17th finished off the back of the green. Both came up short on the final hole. Horsnall pitched and two-putted for a bogey 5. Phillips lidded his pitch through the green, giving Island Park the prospect of a win, but Phillips got up and down for 5 to square the hole and win the match.
Final of the Senior B champion was played & Island Park won on count back