Battling displays from Yorkshire trio not enough in Walker Cup

Yorkshire’s leading trio of amateur players were unable to prevent Great Britain and Ireland slipping to a 14-12 defeat to the United States in the 48th Walker Cup at Seminole Golf Club in Florida at the weekend.

Driving force: Yorkshire's Barclay Brown in Walker Cup action.

Alex Fitzpatrick, 22, and Barclay Brown, 20, of Hallamshire, and Ben Schmidt, 18, of Rotherham Golf Club, each contributed to a strong effort from the visiting team that almost upset the United States, who were heavily favoured going into the week.

Brown, who lost both foursomes matches in partnership with Fitzpatrick, was a much stronger proposition in the singles.

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He claimed a win on the Saturday afternoon and then held a one-hole lead going up the 18th in a crucial singles match on Sunday afternoon against Quade Cummins, but when he hit his approach shot into trouble on the left, his opponent managed to win the last hole to halve the match.

Schmidt, who claimed a half alongside Angus Flanagan in the morning as GB&I won the morning foursomes 2.5 to 1.5, was defeated in the afternoon by America’s Cole Hammer.

Fitzpatrick was beaten by Pierceson Coody in the second match out as the United States built an unassailable lead.

Austin Eckroat thrashed Power 7&6 in the top match but wins for Joe Long, Matty Lamb and Flanagan kept GB&I in the contest.

America’s Ricky Costillo completed a perfect four points out of four with a 2&1 win over Murphy, while Hammer’s 4&3 win over Schmidt got the US to the required 13 points.

An outright win was confirmed for the hosts in at the picturesque but challenging seafront course at Seminole when Stewart Hagestad beat Ben Jones 4&2.

With the result settled, Jack Dyer held on for a one-up win over Strafaci on the final green.

GB&I captain Stuart Wilson said: “It’s been a great weekend of golf.

“The guys came out fighting and tried to equip themselves as best as they could, unfortunately it just wasn’t their weekend.

“From our perspective we’ve maybe let the Americans get away with a bit too much, a few slack shots here and there.

“Hats off to the USA team for pulling the victory off.”

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