Chris Paisley will meet Todd Adcock in a North v South battle for the English Amateur Championship at Woodhall Spa tomorrow after both completed two impressive victories in the day.
Paisley booked his place in the final with a 4 and 2 win over local hero Adam Keogh, while Adcock overcame Tom Sherreard 3 and 1 in what was, for many, a shock result.
Adcock, 23, was Sussex Champion in 2007 but he has never reached these heights. However, being the underdog never worried him and after getting past Neil Raymond in the morning, he found himself 2-down to Sherreard after four holes. But he stuck to his guns and staged a recovery that was to win out in the end.
He won three holes in a row from the seventh to edge in front only to lose the short 12th when he let Sherreard off the hook after the Kent man missed his birdie putt. However, Sherreard lost a ball off the 13th tee to slip behind again, while Adcock took the 15th to increase his advantage while the end came at 17 when Sherreard conceded with the Sussex man five feet away in two.
“I’ve got nothing to lose so I’m going to enjoy the final,” said Adcock. “I’ve played well all week and I’m really looking forward to it.”
Sherreard was philosophical about his defeat. “I fell at the final hurdle,” he said. “Things just ran out on me this afternoon. Nothing fell for me but you have days like that.”
With his game nurtured at the University of Tennessee, Paisley looks the part. After beating former British Boys Champion Matthew Nixon in the morning quarter finals, he fell behind twice albeit briefly on the front nine against Keogh.
But when he went in front for the third time there was no holding him back. With his mother Joan on his bag, Paisley won the 11th and 12th to go 2-up then rounded it off by taking the 15th and was conceded a birdie at the next for victory.
“I’m delighted to be in the final,” said Paisley. “You always think you have a chance but until you do it there is always a doubt. There were times earlier in the week when things look bleak but you just have to dig in.
Adam played well on the front nine but he hit a few poor shots after that and I capitalised on it. I played solid, no fireworks, just hit the fairways and greens which is what you have to do around here.”
Keogh was naturally disappointed but he had enjoyed his most successful week which, hopefully, will lead to better things.
“It’s been a brilliant week,” he said. “It passed my expectations when I got through the first round against Charlie Ford. I came here with nothing to lose and I managed to get through every game until I met Chris. He is a fine player. He was always there of thereabouts and I wish him well in the final.
“As far as I am concerned, I would like to hope this will get me more recognition. I have worked hard and it really hasn’t happened for me.”