BRADFORD were on the wrong end of small margins during their 22-14 Yorkshire Inter-District League match against Harrogate at Otley.

Halfway through the morning foursomes, the visitors were level in three, down in two and up in one.

Yet the back nine would prove Bradford's downfall as they lost two matches on the 18th, two on the 17th and one on the 16th and what looked like an even contest had swung 10-2 in favour of Harrogate, who had included six home players to try and take advantage of tricky pin placements.

On a day when early-morning rain quickly cleared to be replaced by bright, breezy conditions, Bradford gave a debut to Woodhall Hills player Marc Read following his good Scratch League performances, an excellent result in the Bradford Amateur Championship and reaching the Foursomes final last year.

Meanwhile, James Darcy (Northcliffe) was a late replacement for Dane Bairstow (West Bradford), who had a bad back.

Bradford's only morning winners were Darren Rands (Bingley St Ives) and Chris Green (Cleckheaton), who beat George Muscroft (Otley) and Phil Kitching (Rudding Park).

Bradford skipper Martin Gaffney said: "A 10-2 deficit at lunch didn't seem to justify the performances but, as we all know, these games are often won or lost on small margins."

One highlight was Andy Busfield holing out from 175 yards for an albatross two at the eighth, although he was quick to say that he would have swapped it for a win.

Needing at least eight of the 12 singles games would be a tall order for Bradford. However, after nine holes they were up in seven, down in four and level in one, so there was still a chance.

But as with the foursomes, most of the games were evenly poised and again Harrogate had the marginal gains on the back nine.

The singles matches were shared at six wins each and all of the games were close – except for Terry Brushwood (Bingley St Ives) and Jordan Clements (Northcliffe), who had 4&3 and 6&4 victories respectively over Kitching and Richard Fawcett (Thirsk & Northallerton).

Harrogate 22 Bradford 14 – Foursomes (10-2): G Muscroft & P Kitching bt G Grant (Bradford) & B Rhodes (Woodhall Hills) by 2 holes, E Cowan & C Atkins lost to C Green (Cleckheaton) & D Rands (Bingley St Ives) 2&1, D White & P Young bt T Brushwood (Bingley St Ives) & M Read (Woodhall Hills) 3&2, S Bradley & T Coupe bt A Busfield & O Tasker (Cleckheaton) 2&1, D Clarke-Coates & A Harm bt J Clements (Northcliffe) & J Lavin (Cleckheaton) 4&2, W Bradley & R Fawcett bt K Darcy & R Malloy (Northcliffe) by 2 holes. Singles (12-12): P Kitching lost to T Brushwood 4&3, E Cowan lost to B Rhodes by 2 holes, C Atkins bt C Green 3&1, S Bradley bt M Read 2&1, T Coupe lost to O Tasker by 1 hole, D White lost to A Busfield 3&2, D Clarke-Oates bt J Lavin by 1 hole, R Fawcett lost to J Clements 6&4, A Harm lost to R Malloy 2&1, W Bradley bt J Darcy 2&1.