Herts beaten as Yorkshire step up bid to regain title

PUBLISHED: 16:39 18 September 2008 | UPDATED: 13:37 06 May 2010

Yorkshire and Leicestershire head for showdown at County Finals

TITLEHOLDERS Yorkshire scored their third win of the week in the finals of the English counties championship at Long Ashton and now face a crucial showdown against Leicestershire & Rutland.

Yorkshire and Leicestershire head for showdown at County Finals

TITLEHOLDERS Yorkshire scored their third win of the week in the finals of the English counties championship at Long Ashton and now face a crucial showdown against Leicestershire & Rutland.

The defending champions are top of the table - but just half a point ahead of their next opponents, who have established a reputation as gutsy players after twice staging comebacks to win matches.

"Tomorrow will be absolutely crucial," said Leicestershire & Rutland captain Tracy Bourne. "Yorkshire are favourites - but we have absolutely nothing to lose."

In today's matches Yorkshire beat Hertfordshire 51/2-31/2 while Leicestershire & Rutland defeated Sussex by the same margin.

Once again, Leicestershire & Rutland came from behind to take their point. They trailed 2-1 after the foursomes but again showed their strength in the singles. "It was very, very exciting and the team were just fantastic," said Tracy. "I couldn't ask for more."

The Yorkshire/Hertfordshire match was evenly balanced in the morning after the teams shared the foursomes points.

But in the afternoon, Yorkshire proved the stronger team, taking four of the six singles points. Teenager Ellie Robinson wrapped up their score with a winning birdie on the 17th.

Yorkshire captain Winifred Varley remarked: "We have had an excellent day and the performance from all the players has been 100 per cent. All the matches were very good and the standard of golf was very high."

However, the shot of the day belonged to Hertfordshire's Alison Franklin who scored her first hole in one on the 146-yard 13th hole. "I jumped up and down and screamed!" said the former England international, who is returning to serious competitive golf after a break to have her two children.

Her ace took her to three up in her match against Nikki Dunn and she went on to win 4/3.

Meanwhile Warwickshire defeated Dorset 5-4 to score their first win of the week.

After three days the team positions are:

Yorkshire 3 pts

Leicestershire & Rutland 21/2

Hertfordshire 11/2

Sussex 1

Warwickshire 1

Dorset 0

Yorkshire 51/2 Hertfordshire 31/2

(Yorkshire names first)

Foursomes

Kim Crooks & Laura Harvey lost to Lucy Williams & Charlie Douglass 4/3 Sara Garbutt & Helen Searle halved with Alison Franklin & Harriet Key

Naomi Edwards & Emma Brown beat Jackie Foster & Tina Jeary 3/2

Singles

Edwards beat Williams 2/1

Brown beat Douglass 2/1

Searle lost to Key 2/1

Garbutt beat Jeary 2/1

Ellie Robinson beat Foster 3/1

Nikki Dunn lost to Franklin 4/3

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