Royal Burgess and Turnhouse look set for a mouthwatering battle to be table-toppers – and perhaps even title winners – in this season’s Clarity Edinburgh Summer League.
They have both opened with three victories in Section A, with Royal Musselburgh also having a flying start before coming unstuck at Turnhouse.
Royal Burgess, the defending champions, backed up two 8-0 home wins with a 5.5-2.5 success at Glencorse, where the visiting Grant Pollock produced the shot of the night by holing his second at the 16th to close out Eric Walker.
“Another disappointing night for Glencorse,” admitted Peter Lamb, “but credit nonetheless to a solid performance from the Burgess.”
Even at this early stage, it is obvious that the Barnton boys are the club to beat as they bid to land the title for the eighth time in nine years.
But, at the same time, Turnhouse looks to have its strongest squad in recent memory, especially with the addition of Euan McIntosh to the ranks this season.
He won his latest outing 8&7 as Turnhouse maintained their 100 per cent record with a 7-1 win over Royal Musselburgh.
In sharing the spoils in the same section, Merchants and Prestonfield both put their first points on the board, with Eisenhower Trophy winner Gavin Dear among the match-winners for the visitors.
Bruntsfield Links, the winners two years ago, are the early pacesetters in Section B after making home advantage count against previously undefeated Mortonhall.
The only highlight of a very wet evening in that match was Keith Mackenzie’s eagle at the tenth, where he holed an 8-iron for his second shot.
“A great start for Bruntsfield with five points out of a possible six but a tough fixture awaits on Tuesday evening at West Linton,” said Dougie Livingstone.
West Linton will be keen to avoid a repeat of a rare home defeat inflicted upon them by Baberton, who are a point behind Bruntsfield Links after three matches.
A point secured at near neighbours Dalmahoy hoisted Ratho Park into pole position in Section C, though Craigmillar Park trail by just a point with a game in hand. After Dalmahoy won the first three matches, they then lost the next four which meant the result was hanging on the last game which was all square with two holes remaining.
A birdie 2 put Brad Muir one up with one to play and he safely found the green on the last in two strokes whereas Davie Campbell missed and took three shots to get down, conceding the match.
Andy Utterson was the Craigmillar Park match-winner at home to Musselburgh, holding his nerve to hole a six-foot par putt at the last to give the home team a narrow victory.
Longniddry looked strong in the group phase when making their debut in the event last season and are doing likewise this time around.
The East Lothian club made it three wins out of three with a 6-2 victory at Murrayfield, where home captain Stephen Stuart reckoned his team had played a lot better than the scoreline suggested.
Turnhouse 7, Royal Musselburgh 1: A Young bt J Hall 5&3; J McVey bt K Young one hole; E McIntosh bt K Fee 8&7; L Gordon bt C Mackie 3&2; S Armstrong bt S Cunningham 6&5; L McCathie lost to B Fairgrieve 2&1; M Napier bt C Ratcliff 3&1; C Davidson bt R Colquhoun one hole.
Craigmillar Park 4.5, Musselburgh 3.5: B Davies lost to B McLeod 3&2; I Welsh lost to T Cordery 3&2; J Hall bt S Wright 3&2; C O’Toole lost to C Burgess 271; D Walker bt D Henderson 3&2; C Fleming halved with I Fyfe; A Utterson bt L Shepherd one hole; W Mitchell lost to D Murray 5&4.
West Linton 3.5, Baberton 4.5: S Mackay lost to C Malone 5&4; J Grahame halved with C Purves; A Raeburn lost to S Robert 3&2; A Stott halved with S Wilson; N Barr bt R Bradly 5&4; P Neil lost to F McCall two holes; C Coyle bt D Smith two holes; S Walker bt A Macphail one hole.
Brunstfield Links 6, Mortonhall 2: K Mackenzie bt G Nicolson 3&2; K Cattanach bt D Hamilton 2&1; R Brydon bt I Dickson 7&6; J Liddel bt A Main two holes; S McLaren lost to R Paterson 2&1; A Ritchie bt G Boyd 2&1; D McIntosh bt C Timms 2&1; D Miller lost to A Hogg one hole.
Merchants 4, Prestonfield 4: A Helm lost to G Dear 4&3; R Craig bt J Binning 5&4; M Leitch bt C Cheape one hole; A George lost to F Murray 6&5; A Brown bt H Stott 7&6; D Stevenson bt K Wood one hole; G Stevenson lost to C Sinclair 3&2; F Smith lost to S Johnston 2&1.
Glencorse 2.5, Royal Burgess 5.5: S McGarvey bt J Lockie 3&2; A Shanks lost to V Varadharajan 3&2; D Thomson lost to J Fraser 3&2; P Stewart halved with D Johnstone; K Carson bt S Davidson 4&3; J Lamb lost to A Rigby 4&3; E Walker lost to G Pollock 3&2; J Lamb lost to J Yuille 3&2.
Dalmahoy 4, Ratho Park 4: R Smith bt S Imrie one hole; G Johnston bt S Taylor one hole; A Mason bt A Bridges 4&3; S Murray lost to R Boyle 3&2; A Docherty lost to R Dobbie 8&7; A Wallace lost to C Cruickshank 2&1; S Agnew lost to D Paterson 4&3; B Moir bt D Campbell two holes.