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Links are bound for Spain




A team of golfers from The Links in Newmarket will be digging out their passports after booking themselves a date in Spain.

The Links. From left: Lynn Lambert, Edie Douglas, Sarah Greenall (captain), Naomi Pilmer and Marcella Tuttle booked The Links’ place in the semi-finals with a win over Toft
The Links. From left: Lynn Lambert, Edie Douglas, Sarah Greenall (captain), Naomi Pilmer and Marcella Tuttle booked The Links’ place in the semi-finals with a win over Toft

The Links were one of more than 200 clubs from across England, Scotland and Wales that started their Annodata Matchplay Golf Classic campaigns earlier this year.

The carrot of the semi-final and final being hosted at the famous Montecastillo – a course designed by 18-time Major winner Jack Nicklaus – was a distant dream back then, but slowly The Links made their way through the rounds.

Wins over sides from Ely City, Benton Hall, Stowmarket, Royal Cromer and Spalding set up a quarter-final tie against Lincolnshire-based Toft, with the victor knowing they would be on the plane on November 19.

And it was the Newmarket outfit, made up of Lynn Lambert, Edie Douglas, Sarah Greenall, Naomi Pilmer and Marcella Tuttle, that held their nerve to get through.

“It was a very tense match and you could see both sides were desperate to win,” said team captain Greenall.

“It ebbed and flowed one way and the other for a bit but then we started to take control. We never really thought about getting to Spain when we got started.

“It was only when we got through to the fourth round that we started to find out who would be available if we managed to pull it off.

“We have done really well in county events over the years, but when you consider how many clubs entered this competition, it is a massive achievement.”

The world-renowned Montecastillo venue, which hosted the Volvo Masters between 1997 and 2001, is notoriously a tricky course, with water hazards in play on many of the holes.

However, some of The Links team that will be making the trip to Jerez in southern Spain have the advantage of having previously tackled the course before.

“We are going there to win and hopefully we have a good chance,” added Greenall.

“It should help that some of us – myself included – have played the course before.

“It is a very hilly course with high trees. You need to shoot over high trees a lot and it is tough going. It is a good course as well though. Everybody is really excited to get over there and play.”