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McCarthy pleased with S&H progress

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Captain Sean McCarthy insisted it had been a successful season for Shropshire & Herefordshire’s first team despite ending with a 10½-4½ defeat to Staffordshire.

After opening with two victories, McCarthy’s men finished bottom of the league after three straight losses.

The last one of those saw Staffordshire claim a comfortable success at Shrewsbury where they dominated in both the foursomes and singles.

But after failing to win a single game last year, McCarthy insisted his side could still be pleased with their summer.

“Staffordshire are a good side and won the 10 Counties earlier in the year, so it’s no disgrace losing to them,” he added.

“There has been a marked improvement and the league was very tight with only three points separating us from second-placed Derbyshire.

“We set out this season to improve on last year and win at least a couple of games, so we have achieved what we set out to do.

“It’s small margins. Had we won 8-7 at Worcester instead of losing 8-7 then we would have been up pushing second in the league.

“That’s disappointing in one way, but from winning no games to winning two games is a success in itself.”

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The Staffordshire game marked the conclusion of McCarthy’s two years as captain, with Burghill Valley’s Kris Jones due to take over in 2018.

“I have enjoyed every minute of it,” added McCarthy. “It’s been a privilege to be county captain.

“I couldn’t have asked any more of the players, I have never struggled to get players to play. We have selected from a small group which has been great for continuity and the players all got to know each other and got on.”

Results (S&H first)

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Thomas Kerr & Matt Birch lost 5&3 to Jack Gaunt and Jake Walley; Matthew Harrison & Trey Niven won 2&1 against Tom Hewitt & Lewis Pearce; Dave Fish & James Showell halved with Ollie Read & Louis Birchall; Sean McCarthy & Kris Jones lost 3&2 to Ross Popescu & Richard Hunt; Cameron Dhir & Jon Devereux lost 6&4 to James Wilkes & James Murphy.

Kerr lost 5&3 to Gaunt; Birch lost 5&3 to Pearce; Harrison lost to Hewitt 6&4; Niven halved with Walley; Fish lost 3&2 to Read; Showell halved with Birchall; Jones beat Wilkes 2&1; McCarthy beat Popescu 3&2; Deverux lost 5&4 to Hunt; Dhir lost 3&2 to Murphy.

S&H second team also ended their campaign with defeat to Staffordshire, although it was a narrow 8-7 loss at Enville.

It meant Nick Evans’s side finished fifth out of six teams, winning one and losing four of their matches.

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