- GB&I take control on day one to lead 7½- 4½ against the Continent of Europe
- Five points in the afternoon singles for GB&I
- GB&I bidding to win the Jacques Leglise Trophy for first time since 2014
Great Britain and Ireland hold a 7½-4½ lead over the Continent of Europe after the first day of the Jacques Leglise Trophy at Kytäjä Golf in Finland.
Bidding to win the boys international match for the first time since 2014, Stuart Wilson’s side edged the morning foursomes matches 2½-1½ before taking five points from the afternoon singles to establish a three point lead going into the final day tomorrow.
Wilson’s charges need 5½ points to regain the trophy.
Mark Power increased GB&I’s lead to 3½-1½ early in the afternoon singles by beating Daniel Da Costa Rodrigues 3&1. Two birdies in a row on the 13th and 14th proved to be the turning point in the contest and Power closed the match out on the 17th after the Portuguese youngster conceded the hole.
2018 Boys Amateur champion Conor Gough eased to a 4&3 win over David Puig shortly after. The Stoke Park youngster took control of the match with a birdie on the short 6th hole and with Puig unable to match Gough’s solid run of pars after bogeys on the 10th, 11th and 15th, GB&I’s lead extended to three points.
The match-up between Barclay Brown and Eemil Alajarvi swung back and forth over the first nine holes before Brown moved ahead on the 12th with a birdie three. A bogey by Alajarvi on the 14th handed Brown another hole and he made sure of a 3&2 win on the 16th with a fine birdie.
GB&I threatened to run away with the afternoon session after both Robin Williams and Connor McKinney came through their matches against Adam Wallin and Jerry Ji with narrow wins by one hole to put GB&I 7½ -1½ up.
Nevertheless, the Continent of Europe hit back to take three vital points from the remaining matches out on the course.
Loic Ettlin defeated Joe Pagdin by two holes which was swiftly followed by 3&2 wins for Kiet van der Weele over Tom McKibbin and Eduard Rousand Sabate against Archie Davies.
In the morning foursomes, the pairing of Brown and Pagdin defeated Ettlin and Wallin 4&3 to win GB&I’s first point of the day. The Englishmen made five birdies in a contest in which they were always in control of and duly closed out the match on the 15th hole.
Davies and McKibbin won three of the first five holes of their match against Alajarvi and Tuusa to go 3up. After being pegged back to a two-hole lead at the 9th, they responded in positive fashion by firing in two birdies in the following three holes to be 5up after the 12th.
Despite dropping a hole with a bogey at the long 14th, Davies and McKibbin extended GB&I’s lead with a 5&3 win after their opponents could only make bogey at the 15th.
The Continent of Europe gained their first point of the match after Dutch duo Ji and van der Weele closed out their match against Max Hopkins and Power with a fantastic eagle at the 18th to win by two holes.
Gough and Williams were 1down to Puig and Rousand Sabate coming down the 18th but a birdie right at the death ensured the pair salvaged a halve from the contest.