Norfolk couldn’t have a tougher start to their Anglian League campaign this weekend when they travel to face last year’s winners Northamptonshire.

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But new county captain Iain Yule is confident his team won’t go down without a fight.

And if any proof was needed of his team’s commitment to the cause he should look no further than the five players set to make the dash from the South East of England Links Championship at Royal Cinque Ports Golf Club in Kent on Saturday to Wellingborough for the start of play on Sunday.

“The guys that I’ve put out are fighters and they will never give up. They hate getting beaten, which is nice, and is my kind of ethic,” said Yule, who has already enjoyed pre-season success in the Clymer Bowl and against the RAF.

“For the first team I’ve got six guys in there who are playing golf every day. There is a good mix of youth and hunger which is good and commitment.

“That’s the bit I cannot stress enough. Aaron Bullock, Matthew Bacon, Luke Johnson, Matthew Alden and George Morris are willing to come back to Wellingborough having played 36 holes on the saturday in the South East Links.

“I expected to put a scratch squad out but then they all turned round and said they would be there.”

Yule understands that those five players may not be at their most fresh having also played yesterday and today but believes this will be outweighed by their competition readiness.

He said: “I don’t think they will be fresh but their golf game will be so one will hopefully cancel out the other.

“We couldn’t have asked for a harder start. But I’d like a strong start and I just want to do better than last year.”

Last year the first team finished fourth from six with two wins while the seconds, who face their Northants counterparts this weekend at Brancaster, were rock bottom.

But Yule is hoping for improvement this year especially as the majority of the first team are already well into their competitive seasons.

“We’re good to go,” he said. “We’ve only had the RAF match and the Clymer Bowl. We haven’t done any training because of the transition between previous captain Jon Baker-Odlin and myself. We are sitting down some time this month to plan ahead for next season.

“Most of the guys’ seasons have already started and are off and flying.”

One of whom is Luke Johnson, who last week finished 30th in a high class international field in the prestigious Lytham Trophy at this year’s Open venue, Royal Lytham and St Annes Golf Club.”

“I believe that both of our squads, with the exception of Tom Clements and Kit Holmes, are as strong as they could be,” said Yule.

Royal Norwich’s Clements is unavailable this weekend while Hunstanton’s Holmes will hopefully be available again when he returns from his studies at Stirling University.

“The seconds never won anything last year but got very close every game,” added Yule. “They never got humped but they still haven’t won a game for three years or so. But I think this year they could do really well.

“I’m looking forward to it. It’s a learning curve for me as well, sitting down to executive meetings and all that. If i can help these guys get them to their goals then great.”

Yule added the door also remains firmly open for past captain Baker-Odlin to return to the fold along with former Scottish international Stuart Ballingall, who is believed to be taking a break from the game.

1st team: Aaron Bullock (Caldecott Hall), Matthew Bacon (Costessey Park), Luke Johnson (King’s Lynn), Jack Yule (King’s Lynn), Kristian Coop (Cromer), Charlie Bright (Cromer), Matthew Alden (Eaton), George Morris (Eaton).

2nd team: Steve Tidy (Costessey), Kevin Webb (Costessey), Paul Reade (King’s Lynn), Tom Nudd (Royal Norwich), Alan Henry (Dunston Hall), Mile Carrington-Smith (Brancaster), Richard Wilson (Dereham), Alex Carter (Mundesley).

n If you’ve got a golf story please email matthew.chambers@archant.co.uk or call (01603) 772307.

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