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Saunders Secures Order of Merit With Another Win!
The tenth and final regular event of the Golf Days UK Norfolk Tour 2013 was played on the Valley Course at Barnham Broom on Friday 18th October. With plenty of rain in the lead up to the day, the course was in very good condition and scoring conditions were good.
With only two players able to win the Order of Merit, Adam Saunders and Bruce McQuade we were set for a drama filled final day. McQuade had to win the event outright to take the title from Saunders who had led the tour for some time. Saunders and McQaude were sent out first and armed with Live Scoring could see how they were faring compared to the rest of the field.
At the turn, it was 2012 Norfolk Tour winner Dean Ashton who was leading the way on -3 and with Saunders and McQuade at even and one over respectively, it looked a done deal as Saunders was set to win the Order of Merit. However, with leader Ashton struggling on the tough par five tenth hole, he was starting to come back to the rest of the field. Saunders and McQuade were only separated by one shot with six to play, from what seemed like a certainty was now in doubt as McQuade battled on to try and overturn the deficit and snatch the Order of Merit title from Saunders. But Saunders held firm and managed to post 36 points compared to McQuade’s 34. This meant that he has secured the Order of Merit title – winning a set of custom fit irons from Chris Potter Golf – and possibly his fourth win of the season.
Four players were tied at the top of the leaderboard with two holes to play, Dean Ashton, Nick Flett and Mike Howard were on the course and with Saunders watching the scores on the live leaderboard in the clubhouse the final two holes would provide more excitement in what has been a great year for the Norfolk Tour. Ashton made an error on the 17th and would need a birdie on the 18th to tie the lead but he could only manage par leaving him on +1. Flett and Howard both stood on the 18th tee tied for the lead but both could only manage a bogey on the par 4 18th. Saunders had won his fourth event and had a field day at the prize table! He also won of the nearest the pin competitions along with Flett who finished the day in third position.
The focus soon turned to the later starters as they battled it out for the last few places up for grabs to qualify for the Grand Final at Sheringham Golf Club. 2011 Norfolk Tour winner, Randy Reynolds, started the day in fifteenth position and new only a top three finish would be enough for him to secure his place in the tour finale but a poor back nine meant that this was not to be his year. Players on the cusp of making the cut were Paul Barritt, Andy Riseboro and Steve Kearns. All three started the day knowing a decent performance would put him in the final fifteen and it was Barritt who led the way early on and was leading the field after six holes, he managed to keep his score going and his finish was good enough to take the fourteenth spot in the Order of Merit. Riseboro also did enough to secure his place but Kearns agonisingly fell short and missed out by two points to finish the year in sixteenth positions.
The tour now moves on to Sheringham Golf Club on Friday 15th November where the finalists will compete to see who will be crowned the Golf Days UK Norfolk Tour Champion 2013 and win a trip to the five star Gleneagles Resort in Scotland in Ryder Cup year.
You can check out the final standings by clicking the button below.