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Golf Today > Amateur Golf > 2009 > News, Features & Events

Wales teams aim to reign in Spain
20th March2009

Welsh ladies amateur golf enters a new era next week, while the men start the race for Walker Cup places in earnest, at the European Nations Cup in Spain.

The Golf Union of Wales enters seven players, four men and three ladies, and last year the Welsh ladies team achieved one of their best ever results, finishing second while Sahra Hassan was third in the individual event.

However with Hassan having turned professional, along with Breanne Loucks, it is an all-new Welsh ladies team of Vale of Glamorgan's Rhian Wyn Thomas, Llangollen's Stephanie Evans and Newport student Katherine O'Connor.

S4C golf scholar Katherine O'Connor

Nigel Edwards spearheads the Wales men's team looking to repeat his success of two years ago when he won the individual event on the way to his fourth Walker Cup appearance.

He is joined by Welsh amateur champion Ben Westgate, losing finalist Ben Enoch and Pennard's James Frazer as they compete against a strong line-up including European champions Ireland and world champions Scotland.

“It was a very good result for the ladies last year, it is a new group coming through and it is a great opportunity for those players to stake a claim for the British team,” said Edwards, the Golf Union of Wales director of player development and coaching.

“There is the Vagliano Trophy against Europe this year so Stephanie, Rhian and Katherine will want to take the opportunity to do well against quality opposition on a great golf course.

“It is a chance to measure themselves against the best in Europe.”

Edwards is not the only Welsh winner of the individual event, Lee Harpin won in 2002 when Wales also won the overall team title.

“The men's side is always strong in this competition and there will be a lot of players looking to stake an early claim for a Walker Cup spot,” said Edwards.

“Shane Lowry from Ireland will be back to defend his title, as well as some of the Scotland team who are the current world champions.

“Some people are well into their season by now, but this is really the start for most people when it is getting serious almost every week.

“There is a big run of events through to the British Amateur and the European Team Championships which are being held in Conwy in North Wales this year.

“However it is key for players to focus on playing their game rather than thinking about the longer term targets.

“There is no point in talking about the Walker Cup, even though that is easier said than done.

“People will be predicting their teams here, there and everywhere and maybe some players will be dreaming of getting there, but everyone needs to get on with doing their best in each event.”


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