Mid Canterbury’s Edmund Fordyce has played a key role in New Zealand lifting the 2020 Golf Croquet World Team Championship at the weekend.
The tournament, which was held at the Nelson Hinemoa Croquet Club, is contested between New Zealand, Ireland, Australia, the United States, England, South Africa, Sweden and Egypt, who New Zealand played in the final.
The final, played over Saturday and Sunday, saw Fordyce and his team-mates Duncan Dixon, Felix Webby and Josh Freeth trail 2-3 at the end of play on Saturday, with bad light bringing 12 hours of play to a close.
On Sunday, New Zealand came out strongly, and after splitting the first two games of the day, the New Zealand team dominated the singles winning four straight matches to win the test 7-4, defending the title New Zealand won in 2016.
It is the second world title Fordyce has won this year after claiming the Under-21 Golf Croquet World Championship title in England earlier this year.
Fordyce came out on top in all three of his singles matches against the Egyptians, first defeating Hamy Erian 7-4, 7-4, before beating Amr Alebiary 7-3, 7-5.
In his final match he was able to defeat Mohamed Karem 7-2, 7-2.
The seven-day event is one of six world events held by the World Croquet Federation.
The Kiwi foursome had been in fine form throughout the week, dropping only two matches out of 18 in disposing of Australia, England and Ireland.
They found things more difficult in their semi-final against the United States however.
After NZ led 4-2 on Thursday in the race to seven match wins, American Danny Huneycutt closed the gap to 4-3 after beating Fordyce 7-6, 4-7, 7-5 in the early singles match, before Dixon and Webby restored the buffer to 5-3 with a 7-4, 7-4 doubles win over Ben Rothman and David Maloof.
Sherif Abdelwahab’s 7-6, 7-6 victory over Freeth and Maloof’s defeat of Webby meant the Kiwis held a slim 6-5 lead and relied on singles wins to Dixon over Rothman (7-4, 7-3) and Fordyce over Abdelwahab (7-4, 7-6) late on Friday afternoon to secure a finals spot.
– Jaime Pitt-MacKay