Draw keeps Sloan team in second place

  • 7 March 2023
  • Peter Watson

Our Sloan Trophy team heads into the bye handily placed in second after being held to a draw by a determined Murchison side at Golden Downs.

Four of the six matches on February 26 weren't decided until the final hole but in the end both teams had to settle for 4.5 points each after winning three games apiece.

At No 6 Greg Mann was two-up at the turn and all square going down the last only for his opponent to sink a monster putt for par to claim a 1-up win.

His fellow junior, Lewis Wilson, was also two-up going into the back nine but showed his experience with some canny play to cruise to a 3/2 victory.

Aaron Kotua got off to a great start by winning his second hole and ending the front nine two ahead. Some excellent approach play saw him retain a 1-up lead with one hole to play which he confidently won to close out his match 2-up.

Our other intermediate and No 3 Geoff Halkett found the going tougher against a very solid opponent. Four down with five to play, Geoff mounted a minor fightback before succumbing 3/1.

Keri Kotua got off to a bright start with a birdie and doubled it to be two-up at the midway mark, however his rival produced some great clutch putting to pull ahead. One down heading down the last, our No 2 could only manage a half to lose narrowly.

With the result of the tie in the balance, No 1 Peter Green didn't get off to the best of starts, finding himself two down early. However, he then won four holes on the trot to open up a useful lead. One up playing the final hole in front of a packed gallery, he delivered when it counted to ease to a 2-up win.

In other matches, Motueka bounced back from their first-round mauling to defeat a game Tasman 6.5-2.5, while Takaka comfortably saw off a stuttering Greenacres 7-2. Totaradale compounded Nelson's early miseries with a dominant 7.5-1.5 victory to take an early lead in the competition.

So after two rounds Totaradale are on top with 14 points. They are followed by Waahi Taakaro (12), Tasman (10), Takaka (9.5), Golden Downs (9), Motueka (7.5), Murchison (4.5), Greenacres (3.5) and Nelson (3). Murchison and Golden Downs have already had their byes.

We host round three on March 26.


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