Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Red Hot Cowan Lands Treble Top

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Red Hot Cowan Lands Treble Top

Article excerpt

Byline: By Tim Taylor

King George rules roost

Were you to log on to nugc.org.uk and click on the Captain's News, you would understandably be unaware of one reason why the leader of Northumberland's Order of Merit, George Cowan, is written about under a headline which reads "best in show so far".

Clearly his No 1 ranking plays a part, but then so does the sense of humour of the Northumberland captain, Kevin Cademy-Taylor. Cowan's golf club is at Bellingham, which has a cattle market. Hence the headline.

But although this prime golf exhibit, yet another reared in the John Harrison stable at the Matfen Hall Academy, once had a reputation for often taking the second place rosette, on Saturday he trotted into the winner's circle for the third time this season.

Cowan beat his friend Andrew Minnikin 4&3 in the 36-hole final of the county matchplay championship at sun-kissed Gosforth, to add to the North and South Trophy and the Silloth Trophy; despite Minnikin having the advantage of playing on his home course.

If the finalists had been playing strokeplay in the morning round, Cowan would have scored 65 and Minnikin 66, and they were on the course for only two hours and 45 minutes before lunch ( an object lesson from county stars to slow golfers everywhere.

But for a golfer who knew the track, Minnikin discovered an awful lot of trouble after he had held a one-hole lead after 16 holes. On three of the next five holes, he missed a green, found water and drove into a bunker and by the time they teed up for the fourth hole of the afternoon round, he was a hole down.

It was then Cowan switched fully into the form that has brought him so much success this season, with the accuracy of his driving and approach play leaving Minnikin with no margin for errors at a time in the match when he was making more than his fair share.

The seventh hole of the afternoon round was typical of this phase of the contest. …

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