On the first summer day of 2018 with the sun beating down from a cloudless sky with no wind Southerness Golf Club played host to the best golfers in Dumfriesshire, Kirkcudbrightshire and Wigtownshire as they competed in the annual match play competition between the three counties for the Drennan Salver.
The course was again in immaculate condition with true and fast greens as the Kirkcudbrightshire pairing of Colin Heuchan and Greig Blaney set off in the morning foursomes against the Dumfriesshire pairing of Chris Corbett and Mike Grunwell. The outcome was a win for Dumfriesshire by 6 &4.
The next two matches were much closer affairs with Jamie Parker and Clark Riddick (Kirkcudbrightshire) beating Dean Armstrong and Steve Hislop (Dumfriesshire) by 2 & 1, and Connor Bennewith and Craig McKie (Wigtownshire) beating Ross Murray and Craig Smith (Kirkcudbrightshire) by one hole.
Doug Borland and Dave King (Kirkcudbrightshire) then demolished Sam Mitchell and David McCreadie (Wigtownshire) by 6 & 5. Dumfriesshire won the final two games against Wigtownshire when Neil Hamilton and Andrew Kerr both played well to beat Michael Kyle and Colin Hamilton by 5 & 4 and Martin McNae and Liam Carruthers beat Michael Cowie and Bob Graham by 3 & 2.
This gave Dumfriesshire 3 points, Kirkcudbrightshire 2 points and Wigtownshire 1 point with all to play for after lunch.
In the afternoon singles the players discarded their winter jerseys and played in short sleeved shirts for the first time this year as the temperature rose. There was a mad hunt in golf bags to see if any of last year’s sun tan lotion could be found to stave away possible sun burn. Kirkcudbrightshire got off to a flying start winning three of the first four games against Wigtownshire. Colin Heuchan beat Michael Cowie by one hole; Greig Blayney lost to Colin Hamilton by 3 & 2; Jamie Parker beat Michael Cowie by 6 & 4; and Clark Riddick beat Bob Graham by 3 & 2.
Chris Corbett (Dumfriesshire) had a cracking match against Connor Bennewith (Wigtownshire) finally winning by 2 & 1. The next three games were won easily by Dumfriesshire; Mike Grunwell beating Craig McKie by 6 & 5, Steve Hislop beating 15 year old Sam Mitchell by 5 & 4 and Dean Armstrong beating David McCreadie by 7 & 6.
This left the outcome of the destination for the trophy between Kirkcudbrightshire and Dumfriesshire and in the hands of the last four games still out on the course. Neil Hamilton (Dumfriesshire) beat Ross Murray (Kirkcudbrightshire) by 3 & 2 and Andrew Kerr (Dumfriesshire) beat Craig Smith (Kirkcudbrightshire) by 4 & 3. Doug Borland (Kirkcudbrightshire) had his game conceded by Martin McNae (Dumfriesshire) and David King (Kirkcudbrightshire) beat Liam Carruthers (Dumfriesshire) by 3 & 2. A two -two draw in the final four singles games sealed victory for Dumfriesshire and ensured they retained the Drennan Salver.
Colin Heuchan and Greig Blaney (Kbt) lost to Chris Corbett and Mike Grunwell (Dfs) by 6 & 4
Jamie Parker and Clark Riddick (Kbt)) beat Steve Hislop and Dean Armstrong (Dfs) by 2 & 1
Ross Murray and Craig Smith (Kbt) lost to Connor Bennewith and Craig McKie (Wig) by 1 hole
Doug Borland and David King (Kbt) beat Sam Mitchell and David McCreadie (Wig) by 6 & 5
Neil Hamilton and Andrew Kerr (Dfs) beat Michael Kyle and Colin Hamilton (Wig) by 5 & 4
Martin McNae and Liam Carruthers (Dfs) beat Michael Cowie and Bob Graham (Wig) by 3 & 2
Foursomes Result Dumfriesshire 3 games Kirkcudbrightshire 2 Wigtownshire 1
Colin Heuchan (Kbt) beat Michael Kyle (Wig) by one hole
Greig Blayney (kbt) lost to Colin Hamilton (Wig) by 3 & 2
Jamie Parker (Kbt) beat Michael Cowie (Wig) by 6 & 4
Clark Riddick (Kbt) beat Bob Graham (Wig) by 3 & 2
Chris Corbett (Dfs) beat Connor Bennewith (Wig) by 2 & 1
Mike Grunwell (Dfs) beat Craig McKie (Wig) by 6 & 5
Steve Hislop (Dfs) beat Sam Mitchell (Wig) by 5 & 4
Dean Armstrong (Dfs) beat David McCreadie (Wig) by 7 & 6
Ross Murray (Kbt) lost to Neil Hamilton (Dfs) by 3 & 2
Craig Smith (Kbt) lost to Andrew Kerr (Dfs) 4 & 3
Doug Borland (Kbt) beat Martin McNae (Dfs) conceded
David King (Kbt) beat Liam Carruthers (Dfs) by 3 & 2
Singles Result Dumfriesshire 6 Kirkcudbrightshire 5 Wigtownshire 1
Competition Result Dumfriesshire 9 Kirkcudbrightshire 7 Wigtownshire 2
The photograph shows the successful Dumfriesshire team with the Drennan Salver. Chris Corrbett, Dean Armstrong, Neil Hamilton, Mike Grunwell, Barry Scott, Dumfriesshire President, Andrew Kerr, and Steve Hislop. Missing are Liam Carruthers and Martin McNae