GOLF: Oliver Wilson shines on the Madeira Islands Open

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COXMOOR Golf Club’s Oliver Wilson showed a glimpse of the form that made him a Ryder Cup player less than four years ago in last week’s Madeira Islands Open.

After spending time the previous week working on his putting, he found himself leading after 36 holes with a bogey-free 13-under-par total of 131.

And, although his third and fourth rounds failed to keep him at the top of the leaderboard, his game held up under pressure and he finished with a share of fourth place at 16 under par.

Of his much-improved form on the greens he said, “I changed the loft in my putter and it is working.

“The less I think about the set-up the better, and if you are standing over putts and know they are rolling well, it makes a big difference.”

But with his form returning Wilson now has to suffer, missing out on the big money tournaments due to the fall in his ranking over the last 18 months.

And without an invitation, he will not be playing in the tour’s flagship event, the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth, where he finished in second place only four years ago.

While Wilson lacks any action over the next two weeks, club mate Greg Owen tees up in the HP Bryon Nelson Classic in Texas as he looks to consolidate on his start to the year.

In Coxmoor’s Saturday May Medal, Chris Etches won Division One on a countback from Clive Graham and Roy Hudson, all with nett 69, with Ross Overton returning the best scratch score with a round of 67.

The same score featured at the top of Division Two, with Brian Topley taking the top spot after a countback from Robert Keeley, both with nett 69.

A dramatic conclusion to the Rufford Park Invitation day resulted in a three-way tie on 43 points.

Neil Hanson and John Curly eventually came third after a countback to the last six holes.

In second was Craig Freeman and Phil Moody, the winners with a back nine of 24 points was Kris and Ryan Beet.

The best front nine went to T. Dallman and I. Pynegar with 21 points, Paul Hill and Daniel Etches won the back nine with 24 points.

All four par threes were contested for the nearest the pin, the winners being Gary Laverick, Nigel Murphy, Mike Sissons and Paul Hill.

The Ladies’ Weekend competition was won by Theresa Morton on a countback from Joanna Smith with Melanie Shirtcliffe in third with nett 73.

In the men’s qualifying stableford John Stoppard won Division One after a countback from Alex Taylor and Dave Kimberley, all with 36 points.

Kris Beet also needed a countback in winning Division Two from Carl Bak, both with 36 points, one clear of third-placed Bob Whittaker.

Division Three went to Richard Radzki with 38 points, two ahead of Dave Chapman, with Tom Gannon in third a further two points off the place.

The top division of the Men’s Weekend Medal and the scratch prize went to Phil Barnfather with gross 75, nett 67, four better than Dale Benner, with third place going to Craig Done with nett 74.

A best-of-the-day nett 64 from Bernard Bullock won Division Two followed by Greg Hillier on nett 68 and Ryan Beet with nett 70.

Keith Ware topped the Third Division with nett 75, two ahead of Ray Price with Dave Bennett in third with nett 80.

In the men’s Bank Holiday Stableford, Division One was won by Colin Cutts on nett 67, one clear of Mick Laverick and John Stoppard.

Kris Beet returned 38 points to win Division Two, one better than Eric Cartwright with Steve Walsh in third with 35 points.

Malcolm Jewkes topped Division Three with 38 points, followed by Matthew Back with 35 points and Julian Wilson with 34 points.

Neil Turner and Lee Willson carded 44 points in winning the Spring Pairs Cup by one from the pairing of Pete Holman and Dave Smith, who took second after a countback from Mark Burrell and Neil Hanson.

Winners of the club’s Texas Scramble were the team of Greg Hillier, Craig Ingram, Craig Trzupek and Julian Wilson with a nett 58.9.

Terry Quinn and Anthony Brough carded a nett 69 to win the First Division of the Daily Mail Foursomes at Oakmere Park with Sanjeev Sandhu and Andrew Hodgkinson second with nett 71, two ahead of third placed Carl Henshaw and Simon Ball.

Division Two went to Paul McIntyre and Alistair Anthill with a nett 76 on the back nine from Matthew Clarke and John Clarke and Colin Ralphs and Terry Craggs.

In the Sunday Medal, Division One went to Liam Taylor with nett 73 on the back nine from Alan Seddon with Shane Peacock in third on nett 74.

Dave Sills carded the day’s best score of nett 63 to win Division Two by eight from Darren Taylor and Paul Scott.

Division Three went to Derrick Farthing with a round of nett 69 with Andrew Purdue in second on nett 71, three ahead of Bill Hunter.

Winners in the Thursday Medal were Division One - Scott Hinton, nett 75, and Division Two - Mark Corbett, also with nett 75.

The Ladies’ Section Jasper Shield, Three Clubs and a Putter (Stableford), was won by Jean Codner with 31 points, two ahead of runner-up Christine Muse.

Christine Muse and Steve Dean needed a countback over the back six to win the The Banner Kirkham Trophy (Mixed Competition) with 42 points from Carole and Simon Houghton, with third going to Chris Hall and Colin Walkden with 37 points.

In the Junior Sections Handicap and Under Stableford 18 Holes, played over nine holes on the Commanders Course and nine holes over the Admiral’s Course, winner was Ben Hanbury with 36 points, six clear of runner-up Nyle Cockell.

In the nine-hole competition for 28 Handicap and Over, Laura Abbot carded 24 points to win by one from Blake Tarleton- Handley.

In the May Monthly Medal at the Mansfield Golf Club, Craig Greatorex totalled a nett 69 to win on the back nine from Gareth Dando with third place going to Tony Hunton on nett 73.