County Louth Golf Club travelled from Ireland to St Andrews on Friday, 3 November, to play St Leonards and the St Andrews Links Junior Golf Academy (SALJGA) team in the Tri Series Cup.
The weekend tournament was held on the Jubilee and Castle courses in St Andrews, in a Stableford format where the best five scores out of six count towards the team score.
Saturday morning started with a gentle warm up, which saw the teams head out for three balls on the Jubilee, one of the most difficult Links courses. High winds throughout the round certainly didn’t make the challenge any easier!
The windy weather didn’t stop St Leonards Captain Pol Berge from shooting level par, which was the lowest score of the day by six strokes!
Even with St Leonards finishing with the lowest individual score of the day, we were trailing County Louth by nine points going into day two, with SALJGA a further six points behind.
Students and visiting golfers enjoyed a post-match tour of the St Andrews Links Golf Academy on Saturday afternoon with St Leonards’ Director of Golf, Fintan Bonner, who set up a series of performance tests for players from each team, with SALJGA kindly donating prizes for the winners.
Dinner at the New Golf Club in St Andrews rounded off the first day of the competition, thanks to a generous invitation from Club Captain Dale Caton. Mr Caton spoke to the young golfers about the history of the club and explained their famous ties with some of the greatest golfers of all time, including Tom Morris, Bobby Jones and Arnold Palmer.
Sunday saw the final round of the event played at the Castle Course, which is known for its extreme greens and high heather. Scoring was never going to be low, and local knowledge combined with cold winds proved key to navigating many of the holes.
This was evident by the ground made up by the SALJGA and St Leonards players on the visiting Irish team, but County Louth just managed to hold on by one stroke over St Leonards to win the Tri Series Cup for the first time.
A big thank you to SALJGA and the Links Trust for helping organise green fees and local times, which allowed the matches to take place.
Well done to the St Leonards team who did the school proud. We look forward to competing again next year!