|Gavin Scott with the Wallace Thornton Trophy winning Troon Welbeck team|
With the two outstanding low handicap squads in the county at present, the final was an eagerly awaited prospect and proved to be an exciting and fitting conclusion to the 2011 competition.
The lead match featured two of the outstanding young golfers in Ayrshire at present, Scottish Boys Champion David Wilson and Under 16 Scotland internationalist Euan Walker, who were matched together in a prelude to the Ayrshire Junior Champion Of Champions final where the players will meet again in the near future.
Walker got into difficulty with trees at the first hole and Wilson took an early lead, but the match was levelled when a par three was enough for walker to win the short fourth hole. As walker struggled to successive bogeys from the seventh to the ninth, Wilson established a three hole advantage at the turn and although Walker won the eleventh to reduce the defecit, Wilson restored his three hole lead by winning the fifteenth. A half at the next hole gave Wilson a notable 3 & 2 win and the advantage to Troon Welbeck.
The second tie, between Rory McKenzie and Callum Gorrie, was extremely tight over the outward nine, the firt two holes being exchanged, as were the third and fifth, before Gorrie won the seventh to edge a slim advantage as the players turned for home.
The match remained tight in the inward nine but when McKenzie's tee shot spun back off the green and down the hill at the short seventeenth, Gorrie took the initiative and won the hole for a 2 & 1 win to level the match.
The third tie proved equally as tight, Louis Murray being one ahead and being pulled back to all square by Euan Henderson on three occassions over the first five holes. Murray extended his lead by winning the sixth but in an extraordinary game, henderson won two of the remaining three holes to level the match after nine, with only one hole being halved in the outward stretch.
It was more of the same in the inward half from both players, Murray taking two of the first three holes on the back nine to lead by two before henderson fought back to square the match again at the fifteenth. Both the sixteenth and seventeenth holes were halved in threes as the players maintained the high drama of the match right to the end. At the final hole, Henderson's second shot drifted to the right in the breeze to leave him a tricky shot from trees from which he could only make five. After safely finding the green in two, Murray successfully negotiated a two putt for a winning four to take the tie by a single hole.
All eyes now turned to the final tie in the match between Rudi Marshall and Stuart Russell. Marshall lost out in a confrontation with the trees at the first to give Russell an early lead but Marshall learned from his mistakes and won the second and third to take a one hole lead. The tie was levelled again at the fifth, only for Marshall to re establish his advantage at the following hole. Again Russell squared the match at the seventh, only to lose the eighth and ninth to trail by two at the turn.
|2011 Wallace Thornton Trophy finalists|
Kilmarnock (Barassie) on the left and Troon Welbeck on the right
Ayrshire Junior Golf League Chairman Gavin Scott (Loudoun) presented the wallace Thornton Trophy to the winning Welbeck team at the close of play.
Match details (Troon Welbeck players first) :-
DAVID WILSON beat EUAN WALKER by 3 & 2
RORY McKENZIE lost to CALLUM GORRIE by 2 & 1
LOUIS MURRAY beat EUAN HENDERSON by one hole
RUDI MARSHALL beat STUART RUSSELL by one hole
TROON WELBECK 3 KILMARNOCK (BARASSIE) 1