LEEDS have made up for the disappointment of losing last year’s Yorkshire Inter District Union Junior League title on points difference – by winning it in the same manner this summer.
A 21-15 win over York at Malton & Norton GC meant Leeds finished with six wins and a defeat, the same as Harrogate. But a superior wins difference of 60 to 34 means Leeds are the champions.
“We only got beaten on points average by Sheffield last season and now we’ve done the same to Harrogate this year,” said Leeds’s junior team organiser Mike Fisher, of Garforth.
“We’ve used 21 players this year and I’m pleased we have that number of players to call on.
“Some of the boys we have played this year we wouldn’t have thought would play until next year when they were a bit older.
“They were in the squad but we didn’t think they would get a game. But as it has turned out, with losing so many top players to other events, we got a chance to play them and it worked out well. They have had a sniff of what it is like to play in this competition and they’ve done so well.”
Leeds will go for the double tomorrow when they defend their Yorkshire junior six-man team championship at Pike Hills.
Their team line-up there will be Woolley Park’s Matty Lees, Marcus Shepherd (Moortown), Mid Yorks’ Todd Hughes, George Heath and Dan Bradbury (both Wakefield) and Howley Hall’s Tom North.
Lees was one of Leeds’s stalwarts in their league season, returning 15 points from the four matches in which he played – four foursomes wins alongside Hughes plus three wins and a half in the singles.
He was one of the players Fisher lost to other commitments such as the England Amateur championship and the Yorkshire championship.
“One of the problems of having a good side is you start losing them to these events,” he said.
“We need 12 players for each match, aged 18 or under as of January 1, and it has its challenges.
“But it’s great to be involved. My saying is ‘good young golfers make good citizens’, and golf is great for self-discipline.
“The etiquette, the sportsmanship and the camaraderie that go with golf – it’s all good for these young players.”
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Lees is coming towards the end of being eligible for the team while at the other end of the scale, Wakefield’s Euan Bromley, 13, and Moor Allerton’s Reece Simmons, 14, have several years ahead of them.
“We have these youngsters and it is great to know they will be around for a few years,” continued Fisher.
“We will also have Dan Bradbury and George Heath for another two or three years and they are one-handicap players.”
Top points accumulator in Leeds’s successful league campaign was Howley Hall’s Dan Smallwood.
He amassed 16 points through three foursomes wins, four singles victories and two halves.
“Dan has only been playing for us this year,” said Fisher. “He’s come onto the radar late and he’s done really well.”
Hughes, Hough and Moor Allerton’s Robbie Grimwood were each involved in accumulating 14 points while Dominic Hale (Howley Hall) and Heath each banked a dozen points.