“What a great year we have had” 

GCMA England match co-ordinator Cameron Dawson reflects on the 2022 international season What a great year Captain Terry and the teams have had on the international match front. I reported on the first half of the season earlier and I won’t go into those details again but in brief: We lost against the Irish, as usual, at Crowborough Beacon and Royal Ashdown Forest and beat the Welsh at Burnham and Berrow (A slight correction from that report. We regained the trophy from the Welsh after our defeat at Conwy in 2021, not Royal Liverpool as stated). The remaining two matches were also shared with a win against the Scots at Castle Stuart and a loss to the Swedes in Gothenburg. It should be noted that the Swedish match, unlike the others which are an England side, is more of a 'UK versus' as we invite players from Wales to join us. I wouldn’t normally go into any details of the actual matches but the one against the Scots warrants a special mention. After being down 6 ½ - 1 ½ on day one, we managed a 7-1 victory on day two making it a victory for the English 7½ - 8½ with the match going down to the last putt on the last green in the last game. This resulted in an excellent presentation dinner for the English team! Whilst we lost our match in Sweden, that was more than made up for by the welcome we received and the organisation of both social and education events by Anna Tidén - CEO of GAF. Each day, prior to the match, we had a full presentation by the club managers, along with Carin Koch (Past Solheim Cup Captain and now corporate operations ambassador) at Hills GC, going into detail on their operations. This lead to a number of question and answer sessions, highlighting the differences in our operations -not least average club member numbers of 2000 (with membership fees around £600) and it being normal to provide 300 lunches a day in Sweden! I know those in attendance took a great deal from these sessions and it has given me a great deal to think about when organising our fixture in 2023. It almost goes without saying that the courses in Sweden were excellent and challenging, which, when you add the wonderful reception and friendship of all the players, made for a great and worthwhile trip. I think that everybody who put themselves down to be considered for selection played at least one game, and I managed to stay within the agreed guidelines aimed at reflecting the GCMA membership profile. I had 36 players sending positive responses to the request for players sent out through the newsletter, magazine and directly through my database. 8 of whom were retired, and 28 serving managers. I would still like to add to my database and if any member who isn’t on my contact list for the matches would like to be kept informed of...
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