Yorkshire will look to learn after going close to retaining title

Yorkshire captain Jean Waring, right, and her deputy captain Dawn Clegg.
Yorkshire captain Jean Waring, right, and her deputy captain Dawn Clegg.

YORKSHIRE just came up short in their attempt to defend their Northern Counties Match Week title at Sandiway, in Cheshire.

But captain Jean Waring feels her young side - who will become the charges of her deputy Dawn Clegg (York) next season - will learn and grow from their experiences.

The White Rose squad, whose nine members contained only two players in their 20s - and one of these, Rochelle Morris, had only just celebrated her 20th birthday - won four matches out of five.

Only a narrow 5-4 defeat to the side who deposed them, Lancashire, released the crown from their grip in an encounter which was decided in the final match on the 18th green.

“I am very disappointed that we didn’t win Match Week,” said Ripon City’s Waring. “If we could have only halved with Lancashire it would have been a different story.

“However, the girls did us proud. They all played their best but it just failed to meet the target. Lancashire were the strongest team without a doubt. Their chipping and putting was excellent - ours wasn’t and quite frankly that’s what won the games.

“Hopefully the girls will reflect on this and, of course, next year it will be a totally different story. We wish Lancashire every success at Frilford Heath [which stages the national finals, in September] and some of us will be there to cheer them on.”

Rotherham’s Olivia Winning played in all but one of the 10 morning and afternoon sessions over the five days and returned wins in all five of her singles matches.

Hannah Holden, of Lightcliffe, was unbeaten in her five singles matches, returning three wins and two halves, and never went beyond the 12th green in her emphatic victories.

Woodsome Hall’s Rochelle Morris was another who was unbeaten when ‘flying solo’, like Holden recording three victories and two halved matches.

Olivia Hamilton (Cleckheaton) won both her foursomes when paired with club-mate Megan Clarke and returned full points in two of her three singles. Clarke featured in two singles and won one while only succumbing on the final green in the other.

Charlotte Austwick (Fulford) and Lees Hall’s Holly Morgan played together in the foursomes on all five days and returned an impressive haul of four points.

Huddersfield’s Megan Lockett was another who performed impressively in the singles, beaten only once in four outings, and delivered two foursomes points with Winning.

Illness unfortunately restricted Selby’s Megan Garland to just two foursomes matches, but she belied her condition by winning both in the company of Morris.

Final placings: 1 Lancashire 36.5pts, 2 Yorkshire 32.5, 3 Cheshire 31.5, 4 Durham 12, 5 Cumbria 11.5, 6 Northumberland 11.