Golf: Wood signs off with a title in the bag for Longniddry

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LONGNIDDRY lifted the East Lothian Winter League title for the first time in more than 25 years to give skipper Chris Wood the perfect send-off.

“To win the league in my fourth and final year as captain makes me very happy,” said Wood, who recently decided to leave the new champions after joining North Berwick earlier this year.

“Having led Longniddry to promotion and, subsequently, challenging for the league title for two years, it’s great to finish the job at the third attempt.”

The leaders knew a 4-1 defeat was the minimum requirement heading into their final game but, like true champions, they sealed the deal in style with a win at over third-placed Musselburgh.

It involved Wood exercising more of the same careful strategy that has allowed his team to prevail in the closest of matches throughout the season.

The late withdrawal of Myles Cunningham forced changes to the planned top pairing, so the skipper moved Marc Owenson and Fraser Johnstone up the order to No. 2.

The youngsters proved they were up to the task, covering a stretch of holes from the turn in four-under en route to securing the vital point and the league title for their team.

Michael Bacigalupo and Graeme Clarke clocked up their fourth win from four starts together, while Niall Glen, this time paired with Nick Aitken, registered his ninth win of the season, a tally unmatched by any other player in the top flight.

Just as impressive has been Royal Musselburgh’s record in the Second Division – and it had to be as they were pushed all the way in the title race by North Berwick.

John Hall’s side beat Dunbar to finish with a 100 per cent record from nine games and they’ll be hoping to add the icing to the cake against Gullane in Sunday’s Cup Final at Longniddry.

Results

Division 1: Haddington 3, Gullane 2; Longniddry 3, Musselburgh 2; Glen 2, Tantallon 3.

Division 2: Musselburgh Old 3, Gifford 2; North Berwick 5, Thorntree 0; Royal Musselburgh 5, Dunbar 0; Craigielaw 5, Castle Park 0.