Golf: Mixed emotions for Leicestershire in climax to league season
There was celebration and disappointment for Leicestershire in the final Anglian League matches.
The first team finished their season on a high with a 9-3 win against Northamptonshire at Northants County.
But the seconds saw their hopes of winning their title dashed after a 7½-4½ defeat against defending champions Northants at Park Hill.
The firsts made a fine start, leading 3-0, with one halved, after some thrilling foursomes, and romped home 5½-2½ in the singles to secure their overall victory.
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County captain Stuart Marriott said: "Our players all performed extremely well over the demanding, challenging, championship course.
"Following on from our decisive away win against Suffolk, in our previous match, it was another great away result for us.
"The team spirit was tremendous, something commented on by our opponents, and the golf was highly exciting all day long."
There were maximum points for four County players – Steve Sansome (Birstall), Martin Anderson (Kibworth), Ashley Mason (Glen Gorse) and Alastair Kinnaird (Cosby).
Whetstone's Martin Mayes, who was playing in his first Leicestershire first-team game for more than 10 years, and James Billingham (Cosby), both finished the match unbeaten.
The seconds trailed 3-1 after their foursomes and lost the singles 4-3, with one halved.
Skipper Jim Longstaff (Park Hill) said: "It was a disappointing result for us as we almost took the title last season, and have been closer still this year only for it to elude us again."
Details (Leics names first):
Firsts – Foursomes: D Gibson, A Mason beat R Evans, K Lloyd two-holes; S Sansome, M Anderson beat G Bott, P Hodgkiss 5&4; J Billingham, A Kinnaird beat L White, F Carnihan 2&1; J Merry, M Mayes halved with A Firman, N Presto.
Singles: Gibson lost to Evans two-holes; Sansome beat Hodgkiss one-hole; Anderson beat Lloyd one-hole; Mason beat Carnihan 2&1; Kinnaird beat Presto 5&4; Merry lost to Firman 3&2; Mayes beat Bott 2&1; Billingham halved with White.
Seconds – Foursomes: L Plant, K Dandy lost to H Woan, L Hitchcock two-holes; O Willson, D Cooper lost to M Hodgkiss, M Mudge 5&3; J Longstaff, P Dixon lost to G Croxton, B Clayton 4&3; R Harris, D Saul beat R Dalton, J Barker 3&2.
Singles: Plant lost to Woan two-holes; Dandy beat Hodgkiss 3&2; Willson halved with Mudge; Dixon beat Hitchcock 3&2; Longstaff lost to Clayton 3&2; Harris beat Croxton 5&3; Cooper lost to Barker 3&2; Saul lost to Dalton two-holes.