The duel in the sun

Glenn Riches, Brian Laverty, Brad Sarjantson and Chris Boyes
Glenn Riches, Brian Laverty, Brad Sarjantson and Chris Boyes
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THE big event has finally arrived – the eagerly-awaited finals of the Gazette/Blacktax Matchplay tournament will take place in Portugal over the next three days.

Hundreds of Fylde golfers entered the tournament, and the final four will fly out to the Algarve tomorrow.

They are 2010 winner Chris Boyes, of Knott End GC, Brad Sarjantson, of De Vere Heron’s Reach, and the Fleetwood GC pair of Glenn Riches and Brian Laverty, who will be hoping to succeed their clubmate Andy Nurse, the 2011 winner.

All four won through keenly contested quarter-finals at Shaw Hill Golf Club, and now face two rounds to decide the 2012 champion. Their flights to Portugal and three nights’ luxury accommodation at the marina resort of Vilamoura will be funded by event sponsors Blacktax taxis, whose director Ian Wharmby will be waiting to greet them at Faro Airport.

The draw will then be made for Friday’s semi-finals at the Millennium Course, with the final the following day at the world-renowned Old Course at Vilamoura.

The players will again be accompanied by Gazette sports editor Andy Moore and photographer Bill Johnson, who will provide full coverage next Wednesday.

Wharmby said: “If the golf matches the standard of previous years it will be another great event, and Vilamour provides the players with the perfect setting. Let battle commence.”