Norfolk: Men’s County Championship

Norfolk County champion Kale Heath

Kale in a class of his own at Hunstanton

NORFOLK: Tuesday June 15th

There was a dominant performance from Kale Heath, who went one better than last year to claim his first Norfolk County Championship at Hunstanton.

In 2020 the Kings Lynn player finished runner-up to Swaffham’s Ben Willis at Thetford but on Saturday coped superbly with the windy conditions, thick rough and considerable challenges presented by a 7000-yard course to win by eight shots from Royal Norwich’s Ben Terry.

A superb two-under-par first round 70 left him two clear at halfway and even though he didn’t improve on his scoring in the afternoon (he finished with a 72), knew that was going to leave him top of the tree in the 36-hole strokeplay event.

“I knew my second-round score was going to be enough,” said the 20-year-old plus two handicapper. “The people I was playing with were struggling.

“Off the blue tees it’s a long course and the rough was up so if you missed badly off the tee you were going to struggle to find it.”

In the first round he made a blistering start to be four under through nine but got very unlucky on ten with a pot bunker at the front of the green capturing his ball as his approach spun back into it. After playing out sideways he took a double bogey.

However he responded by nearly holing his second shot at 11 and dropped one more at Hunstanton’s infamous tough finishing hole.

After lunch he kept things going superbly, summed up by a stunning up and down at the 16th, where some great imagination got his bunker shot to eight feet and he holed his putt despite there being three feet of break.

Top 10 scores (par for 2 rounds: 144)
1) Kale Heath (-2, Kings Lynn) 142
2) Ben Terry (-1, Royal Norwich) 150 
3) Warren Bates (-3, Heacham Manor) 153
4) Darren Abs (3, Sheringham) 154
5) Mark Borley (5, Eaton) 154
6) Ben Willis (-4, Swaffham) 156
7) Bruce McQuade (6, Royal Norwich) 156
8) Sebastian Sadler (3, Sprowston Manor) 156
9) Brandon Hobley (1, Eaton) 156
10) Mason Bernstein (0, Kings Lynn) 157