Devon Seniors run the defending Champions Cornwall close at Bowood in the Channel League

Devon Seniors gathered for their second Channel League fixture of the year, a trip to play the 2019 (and therefore defending) League Champions Cornwall at Bowood Park. Three changes were made to the side which defeated Somerset first time out, Mark Evans (RND), Rick Osborne and Phil Lyons (both  Churston) replacing Ian Barnes, Peter Bicknell and Paul Vicary.

Played in persistent rain, the morning Greensomes were shared 2½ all, but both counties probably felt an opportunity for a lead was lost. In the top game skipper Colin Papworth (Teignmouth) and Tim Aggett (Warren) were 2 down with 3 to play but deployed the get of jail free card wining the last 3 holes against Mark Blaber (Carlyon Bay) and Malcolm Edmunds (W Cornwall) for a highly unlikely 1 up victory. Chris Audin (Exminster) and Osborne halved with Andy Rowe (Looe) and Warwick Holland (W Cornwall) before Charlie Phillips (Newquay) and Colin Kitt (China Fleet) defeated Tony Allsopp (Tiverton) and Lyons  to even the tally.

The Thurlestone pairing of Dave Eva and Darryl Day were always in control against the Tehidy Park duo of Cornwall GU President Andy Clotworthy and Richard Simmons, so focus turned to the last game. Evans and Graham Ruth (Tavistock) had been up most of the way but came to the last level, where courtesy of a superb downhill putt to a matter of inches across the full width of the green from Richard Bunch he and Rod Handysides (both West Cornwall) pinched the full point, leaving honours even.

All to play for the in the afternoon so Devon shuffled the singles pack and led off with Allsopp, who fell to an in-form Blaber 3/2. Evans immediately responded with a 2/1 victory over Rowe to level things up. Cornwall took the next two games, Phillips beating Eva 4/3, Clotworthy defeating Osborne 2/1. Devon came roaring back as Audin beat Bunch at 17 and Aggett beat Kitt at 16. The Devonians even nudged in front when Lyons defeated Holland convincingly 4/3

News on the other 3 games was not good, Devon down in all three. Skipper Papworth succumbed to Handysides at the 16th, whilst Ruth was beaten by Cornwall debutant Kevin Mula (Newquay) brought in for the afternoon singles. Day had been 4 down to Simmons but battled back before going down at the 17th, giving the Cornish a hard fought and deserving 8½ to 6½ victory.

In the Covid-inspired divisional format this season the sides will meet again at Torquay in July.

Click here for the full results.

Huge thanks to Bowood park for their hospitality and the presentation of the course.  

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