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Reigning Champion races into pole position in the Golf Care matchplay championship

14th May 2013  
Paul Llewellyn moves into first place with one round remaining of Grand Final.

It was moving day at The Golf Care Matchplay Championship, the UK's biggest amateur golf event, with several players taking significant steps towards championship glory tomorrow.

Reigning Men's Singles champion Paul Llewellyn, showed the grit that brought him the title 12 months ago, with 38 points and a gross round of 75, in difficult conditions at The Els Club.

In the Men's Pairs event, Martin Firth and Andrew Taylor from Tytheringon Golf Club in Macclesfield have completely turned the tables on last year, when they finished in ninth place.

They have a two-shot lead over Geoff Edgar and Matt Blair from Kirkistown Castle Golf Club in Northern Ireland, after scoring 41 points in the betterball stableford format.

Meanwhile in the Mixed Pairs, Martin Pyke and Anne Wheble from Dartford Golf Club have stormed into a six shot lead after scoring 38 points. With one round remaining, there is still everything to play for in Dubai.

Competitors will rest up back at the 5-star JW Marriott Marquis Hotel, before taking to the course for one last time tomorrow in the hope of becoming 2013 Matchplay Champions.

“The course is fantastic. In fact, the hospitality at the club and hotel is just incredible; nothing is ever too much for anybody. We're just really enjoying the whole experience and playing well, although we did drop a couple of shots coming in today, which was a bit disappointing.

We've got a bit of a lead, but won't be taking anything for granted, as anything can happen on a course like this. So, we're going to have an early night and hopefully celebrate properly tomorrow evening,” noted Anne Wheble, Mixed Pairs leader.

Andrew Taylor, Men's Pairs leader, commented, “Well, we've totally turned it around from last year! I certainly didn't think we'd be leading with one round to play, but we're looking forward to tomorrow to see if we can finish it off.

The course is great and it certainly helps having played here before. We're making fewer mistakes than 12 months ago, although it was a bit of a struggle early on when Martin had the shanks! Thankfully, I carried him a bit today, but it will be a team effort tomorrow,”

“I didn't actually play that great today, but scored very well and got up and down a lot, including from the lake on the 15 th ! Three-over gross is a pretty good effort for me out there and it looks like tomorrow might be a bit of a shootout between me and Maartens, kind of like a Matchplay situation.

Men's pair Andrew Taylor tees off with partner Martin Firth looking on

He is a good player and hits the ball really well, so I expect it to go right down to the wire. It'll all come down to the pressure at the end of the day,” noted defending Men's Singles champion, Paul Llewellyn from Drayton Park Golf Club in Tamworth.

The tournament was first launched in 2003 and celebrates its tenth anniversary this year. It has grown to become the biggest in the UK & Ireland, with thousands of competitors teeing it up in the first round. The forty lucky Grand Finalists therefore, can be proud of their efforts in getting this far. For live scoring and more information on the Golf Care Matchplay Championship or to enter the 2013/14 championship, visit . For tournament news live from the event, follow us on Twitter @MatchplayUK and Facebook .


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