Durham victory slips away as Yorkshire secure final three singles

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Durham slipped to a third defeat of the season in the Northern Counties League on Saturday, succumbing 10-8 to Yorkshire.

Lifted by last month’s win over Cheshire, Durham fell 3.5-2.5 behind in the morning foursomes at the Oaks club in Aughton, North Yorkshire.

Castle Eden’s Ryan Dixon and Cameron Wallace (Seaton Carew) teamed up for a 4&3 win, while Stuart Brown of Castle Eden and Consett’s John Kennedy secured a narrow one-hole success.

Boldon’s Rhys Thompson and Chris Handy (South Moor) forced a half in their clash, but Boldon clubmate Andrew McCarrick, partnered by Jordan Bettis of Ravensworth, were outgunned 4&3.

The afternoon singles started badly for Durham, with Brancepeth Castle’s Richard Aisbitt beaten by two holes in the top match, then Handy lost 4&3.

But Durham stormed in front overall by taking the next four, thanks to victories from Thompson (2&1), Jamie Birkbeck of Bishop Auckland (one hole) and Eaglescliffe pair Tom Smith (one hole) and Sam Donald (4&3) in front going into the final three singles matches, but defeats for Bettis (2&1), McCarrick (4&2) and Kennedy (2&1) saw Yorkshire edge home, moving them within a point of leaders Lancashire, who were held 9-9 by Cheshire.

Durham’s final match is against Northumberland at Chester-le-Street on September 3.