Guernsey Press

Harwood knocks out Mahy on opening night

Two former champions fell at the first hurdle as the Men’s Island Championship got under way yesterday at L’Ancresse.

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Wayne Harwood knocked out former champion Steve Mahy yesterday as this year’s Island Championship got under way at L’Ancresse. (Picture by Gareth Le Prevost, 33250058)

Wayne Harwood pulled off the result of the night as he knocked out Steve Mahy in one of just two matches to go the full distance while Nigel Vaudin was the other previous winner to suffer defeat, coming off second best to Daniel Griggs who required just 14 holes to progress and book a date with the top seed Conor McKenna.

In contrast, Harwood and Mahy were involved in a real nip-and-tuck battle in which both players led at various stages before the former held a narrow one-hole advantage having reached the 15th.

Mahy hit the better drive of the two, but his second went awry and ultimately that mistake proved costly as he went on to concede the hole having been unable to find the green in five shots.

Steve Mahy playing his third to the 15th. (Picture by Gareth Le Prevost, 33250056)

He immediately got that hole back, though, as a fine tee shot on 16 to within 10 yards or so of the green led to a birdie that reduced his deficit to one.

Mahy had a 15ft birdie putt on 17 to level the match, but it failed to drop and Harwood closed the match out with a superb tee shot into the wind on 18 after his opponent had failed to find the putting surface.

He will now face Island Games team gold medallist Tom Pattimore, who came through the other match to reach the last, doing just enough to edge out Harry Bushby.

There were a pair of former champions who did progress in the form of the Blondel cousins, Danny and Jamie, who proved too strong for Stuart Wallbridge and Michel Davy respectively.

Danny finished his match in style with a birdie on the 13th and will now meet Arthur Evans, a comfortable winner over Sam Le Huray, while Jamie required 15 holes to earn his victory and he will face Dave Robinson, who overcame Siam rugby player Dale Rutledge.

Ashley Northgrave is through to the second round in the bottom half of the draw following the withdrawal of current Channel Islands junior champion and last year’s runner-up Jayden Tucknott, who has qualified for the Brabazon Trophy, which starts on Thursday.


Men's Island Championship first round, top half results: Griggs beat Vaudin 5 & 4, Harwood beat Mahy 2 up, Pattimore beat Bushby 1 up, D Blondel beat Wallbridge 6 & 5, Evans beat S Le Huray 4 & 3, Robinson beat Rutledge 3 & 2, J Blondel beat M Davy 4 & 3.