England win European Nations CupFebruary, 2015
English champions team up to claim international crown
A team of English champions held off a charging Spanish side to score their sixth victory in the European Nations Cup at La Reserva, Sotogrande.
The team of Ashley Chesters, Paul Howard, Nick Marsh and Ben Stow – all champions in their own right – edged home one shot clear of hosts Spain.
England coach Graham Walker said: “With a few holes to play the tournament was tight. We needed a big finish and the team responded in great fashion.”
Double European amateur champion Chesters birdied the 15th, while Brabazon champion Stow eagled the 15th and birdied the 16th.
‘This was a true effort in a really tough week’ Howard, who was the first to finish, went straight back on to the course to caddy for Marsh over the last few holes, underlining the side’s strong team spirit. Marsh is the English amateur champion and Howard recently added the New South Wales amateur championship to the 2014 South American amateur title.
The European Nations Cup was played in cool weather and winds gusting up to 35km per hour, which delayed play.
The English team were second after the first round, four shots behind Ireland, and took the lead after 36 holes. They refused to be dislodged, despite Spain’s efforts.
Team manager Terry Casey said: “This was a true effort in a really tough week. The golf course was playing at its most challenging and rounds were taking six hours and more.
“Our lads prepared exceptionally well and showed a truly professional attitude throughout the week, so that when things looked bleak on the course we held together.”
The triumph gives England its fifth win in seven years, with previous successes in 2013, 2011, 2010 and 2009.