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Victorious England players seek prestigious title
23rd July 2010

Tom Lewis -(Photo Tom Ward & EGU)

All six members of England's victorious European Men's Team Championship squad will be in action when the English Amateur Championship returns to Little Aston and Sutton Coldfield, near Birmingham, on 26th - 31st July.

The happy half dozen - Laurie Canter (Saltford, Somerset), Tommy Fleetwood (Formby Hall, Lancashire), Billy Hemstock (Teignmouth, Devon), Tom Lewis (Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire), Chris Paisley (Stocksfield, Northumberland) and Eddie Pepperell (Drayton Park, BB&O) - who beat Sweden in the final, could all be in the hunt for this prestigious title.

But many will be watching Darren Wright (Rowlands Castle, Hampshire, IoW & CI) to see if he can 'double-up' after his success in the Brabazon Trophy at Hoylake.

Few players manage to lift both titles in the same year, the most recent being Mark Foster, who won the English Amateur at Hunstanton in 1995 after sharing the Brabazon with current England Captain Colin Edwards at Hillside.

But 21-year-old Wright has the ability to join that exclusive club if he can maintain his form over what is something of a marathon week of 36-hole stroke play qualifying followed by several round of match play knockout.

The only former champion in the field is Todd Adcock (Nevill, Sussex), who won in 2008 at Woodhall Spa when he beat Paisley 2 and 1 in the 36-hole final over the Hotchkin Course. With Paisley also in the field, we could have a repeat at Little Aston.

Luke Goddard lifted the title at Rye a year ago when he beat Farren Keenan 3&2 in the 36-hole final but both then turned professional.  Keenan overcame Dave Coupland (Boston, Lincolnshire) in the semi-finals and Coupland is competing again, hoping to go one better this time, having just come off a victory in the Tillman Trophy at Deal.

This will be the fourth occasion that the English Amateur has been staged at Little Aston. The first was in 1927 when Philip Perkins was the winner then Alan Helm triumphed there in 1948. The famous club hasn't hosted since 1985 when Roger Winchester lifted the title.

A total of 288 leading players will descend on Little Aston and Sutton Coldfield seeking to join a long and exclusive list of English champions.  They will play two rounds of stroke play qualifying, one at each course, over the opening two days. From that, the leading 64 players and ties will go forward to the knockout stages over 18 holes at Little Aston.

Over 400 players filed entries with the cut-off coming at scratch, 50 players off that handicap getting in, the rest being balloted out to a reserve list.

The Championship starts at 7am on Monday 26th July and culminates with the 36-hole final on Saturday 31st. Latest scores and news updates can be found on the EGU website .

Photo shows Tom Lewis from Welwyn Garden City.

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