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GOLF: Hopkins praises spirit as Burford clinch hat-trick
9:00am Tuesday 29th October 2013 in Sport
BURFORD are celebrating a third Shaw Gibbs Oxfordshire Foursomes League Section 1 title in six years after winning their final match at home to Tadmarton Heath.
The leaders needed one and a half points from the fixture to make sure of the crown.
It did not begin well, with Tadmarton’s Spencer Hallam and James Burton winning the opener by one hole.
Richard Connor and Matt Hill responded to win the second match 3 & 1, before Dave Summers and Simon Hopkins sealed a 2-1 victory with a 5 & 4 success.
Hopkins, Burford’s captain, is a veteran of the club’s wins in 2011 and 2008, along with teammates John Wilks, Dave Summers and Adam Salter.
The skipper was delighted to regain the title won by The Oxfordshire last year and felt it was down to a strong squad.
He said: “We have had a squad of ten players and it’s been a good effort from all of them.
“There have always been some hard decisions to make. I have left myself out at times, but everyone has played their part.
“The guys who weren’t picked on Saturday walked the course, which shows the team spirit we’ve got.
“We’ve probably had more competition for places this year, which is healthy.”
Frilford Heath finished second with a 3-0 win against Cotswolds Club, who were relegated as a result.
Studley Wood missed out on promotion by half a point as their two rivals both won.
Ellesborough whitewashed Buckingham 3-0, while Feldon Valley won 2-1 at Studley Wood, who finished in third position.
The top two finished on the same points, but Ellesborough pipped Feldon Valley by virtue of a better head-to-head record.
The one promotion spot in Section 3 went to Chiltern Forest.
A 3-0 win over already-relegated Bicester was enough to see them leapfrog Magnolia Park, who had already completed their fixtures.
Hadden Hill avoided the drop with a 2-1 win at Shrivenham Park, who slipped into the fourth tier as a result.
North Oxford needed half a point to take the Section 4 prize and duly obliged, sharing the points with nearest challengers Rye Hill.
The promotion and relegation picture was altered following Carswell’s mid-season exit and the revised structure will only be confirmed if it is ratified at the AGM, hosted by Frilford Heath on December 2.
As it stands no other clubs have applied to join for the 2014 season, so a new league set-up will be put to the vote at the meeting.
The proposed plan will see three sections of five teams and one of six.
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