FireSport UK Scotland v England Annual International Championship 2023 hosted by Scottish Fire and Rescue Services at
Monifieth Golf Links, Angus
27th & 28th September 2023
Sponsored by Elite Electrical Contracting Ltd.
Scotland v England Annual International Championship 2023
The final National FireSportUK Golf Championship of 2023 did not disappoint at the fantastic Monifieth Golf links in Angus. In what was a great “Auld Enemy” battle, thanks go to the Golf Links staff who presented the course in superb condition. Thanks also to the Grange & Broughty Golf club for allowing us to use their facilities, bar and catering and their friendly welcome. In what was probably the most important fixture since 1966, the outcome will probably go down in history as the greatest ever!!! It will be talked about in the locker rooms and on the fairways at every FireSport UK event for the next 50 years. Most importantly, it was played in the good spirits that the competition deserves.
Pairs Day 1 The first round of Matchplay was the Pairs teeing off at midday (A bit earlier than planned). I was hoping I would not need to mention the weather in this report as is on nearly every other one BUT, come 1500hrs, the wet stuff started coming down and then about 15 mins later was coming down sideways when the wind joined in! Horrendous conditions where everyone got a good drowning. The course held up better than the waterproofs, but this did not stop the players battling it out. After the 10 games, England held a slight lead, 5 ½ to 4 ½ going into the day 2 Singles. As the teams tried to dry out, we all jumped in the buggies and headed back to the hotel for some light refreshments. Nearest the Pin, Hole 5 – Steve Talbot (Eng) Nearest the Pin in 2, Hole 7 – Colin Mottram (Eng) Nearest the Pin in 3, Hole 9 – Danny Doherty (Sco) Singles Day 2 Back to the 1st tee at 1130hrs, the 20 singles games headed off into the bumps and slopes of the links which, were again, in perfect conditions considering the overnight monsoon. As the games moved round the course, players trying to find out current standings using typical golfers sign language added to the drama and it wasn’t until the final game came in when there was a clear winner. I can only comment on the fourball that I was in, and let’s just say, points were shared! Tony Leslie, put me to the sword in what was a fantastic display of golf, beating me 4n2. The other match, Martin Spence (Scotland), 4 down, 6 to play, somehow fought back and beat Grant Morrow (Scotland)1 up. I am sure there were other tales of brilliance and woe out there! With the 2nd last game done, the scores were sitting Scotland 15 v 14 England. The darkness was coming in and with Scotland needing at least a half, Dean Gibb pulled out a 3n2 win and, for the first time since 2008, the trophy was back in Scottish hands.
Nearest the Pin, Hole 11 – Neil Spratt (Eng) Nearest the Pin in 2, Hole 7 – Derek Brown (Sco) Nearest the Pin in 3, Hole 9 – Kenny Carlyle (Sco)
A fantastic effort by all and well done the prize winners. Quote of the Comp – Jason Bettinson (England)
“COVID has won this trophy more than Scotland!”
Not now, it’s a draw!
Winners – SCOTLAND – 16 v 14
Thank you all for your efforts and contribution to a successful and very competitive championship and look forward to the 2024 England v Scotland, hosted by England at Sandmoor Golf Club. Thanks also to the event Sponsor (ELITE ELECTRICAL CONTRACTING Ltd) for your generosity in making this championship the success it was. Thanks Tony Leslie and Mick Topping for your work with the sponsors.
I would also like to thank DACO Bruce Farquharson for representing the Scottish Fire & Rescue Service at the prizegiving and presenting the trophy. Last and by no means least, a BIG CHEER to Sandy Thomson, the Vice Captain of the golf club for a fantastic speech which topped off a great championship.