Consett fly the flag

Great shot takes team into last 16 of Mail on Sunday Classic

John Kennedy produced a miracle shot at the fifth extra hole to take Consett into the last 16 of the Mail on Sunday Classic at the expense of former finalists Chester-le-Street.

It looked all over for Consett when they were two down with two to play in the final match, but James Newton won the 17th and birdied the last to level the match and give his side a lifeline.

That have meant a sudden death shoot-out was needed between Durham County player Kennedy and Dave Foreman.

Kennedy, who had lost his earlier match 5&4 said: “It’s ironic that I hit every fairway and green in regulation and almost birdied the first four holes of the play-off before winning it on the hole where I pulled the tee shot miles left into the trees on.

“It was by far the worst tee shot I hit all day. Dave hit one straight down the middle of the fairway to a perfect position and I was knee high in nettles and trees. I was 200 yards from the green and managed to hit a miraculous shot to leave 60 yards to the flag.”

Foreman ended up in the trees at the back of the green and after hitting his chip shot to within 3ft of the flag, Kennedy held his nerve to close out victory.

“All the guys I play with say I am at my most dangerous every time I knock the ball into trouble. They burst out laughing when they saw what was happening and said they knew I was probably going to win it on that hole,” added Kennedy.

“It was a really good atmosphere. Everyone from Chester-le-Street came up and congratulated us. They want to see us go all the way.”

The Durham club has two more rounds to play if they are to reach the grand final, held at El Romipdo in Spain.

“If you rewound to James being two down with two to play, we were beaten, we were gone. Two hours later we’re through. I still don’t know how that happened,’ said Kennedy. “Once you get to this stage, getting to Spain becomes a realistic possibility.”