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Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Scottish women's amateur championship



A sudden collapse over the last few holes by the front-running Claire Hargan (Mortonhall) and Kylie Walker (Buchanan Castle) left 17-year-old Kelsey MacDonald from Nairn Dunbar with the honour of being top seed for the match-play stages of the 93rd Scottish women's amateur golf championship at sun-drenched Lossiemouth today.

And Fife schoolteacher Louise Kenney (Pitreavie), as the unexpected No 2 qualifier, is seeded to meet young Kelsey in Saturday morning's final.

Playing together in the last group to finish, Walker dropped six shots over the last four holes, including a horrendous quadruple bogey 8 at the 18th which has lived up to its reputation as one of the toughest finishing holes in Scotland.

Hargan bogeyed four holes in a row from the 12th and dropped another at the infamous 18th. Both came home in five-over-par 43, Walker for an 80 and a 36-hole total of 153, Hargan an 82 for 155.

Kelsey MacDonald, whose +2 rating makes her, on paper at least, the best player in the field, had equalled the best score of the day a two-under 74 for a three-under-par total of 149.

But she had no idea this was going to make her the No 1 qualifier.

"I putted terribly, heaps of three putts," she moaned, unaware that the overnight leaders were toiling up the home straight.

""The best thing I did was to birdie the first three holes. I got two more birdies but I just can't get the three putts out of my mind, probably because I got the last of them on the 18th green."

Louise Kenney, who lost her place in the Scotland home international team, took a big step towards getting back in the selectors' good books with a 74 to be No 2 seed, two shots behind Kelsey MacDonald on 151.

Claire-Marie Carlton (Fereneze) took third place in the qualifying stakes with a 77 for 152, one ahead of Kylie Walker and former champion Martine Pow (Selkirk).

Curtis Cup selection Michele Thomson hooked her way to three double bogeys in scoring a 78 for 157 and joint 10th place among the qualifiers.

"I'm glad that's all over. Now I just want to get started in the match-play," said Michele whose Aberdeenshire rival, Laura Murray from Alford, winner of the Ness Open at Inverness on Sunday, qualified safely in sixth place with a 75 for 154.

"I played solidly and had a lot of putts that just lipped out," said 19-year-old Laura.

Mary Summers from Carnoustie, travelled to Lossiemouth, mainly to give her up and coming daughter Ailsa, also a Panmure Barry member, some experience of big tournaments ... but Mary shot a brilliant second-round 74, improving by 15 shots on her first round, to be an unexpected qualifier for the match-play stages.

"I've not played in the 'Scottish' since 1991 when it was played at Carnoustie and I qualified for the match-play there!" said Mrs Summers who has been Angus county champion six times.

"I got off to a flying start with five birdies in seven holes between the second and the eighth. I could hardly mess it up after that."

Another Angus player to progress was Kirriemuir's Ann Ramsay on 161 with an 82 in the second round. Ann now lives and works in Paisley.

Former Scottish champion Elaine Moffat, a member of the St Regulus club in St Andrews, qualified on 160 after a second-round 77. Jocelyn Carthew (Ladybank) made it on 164 with an 80. Also on 164 was senior player Lorna Bennett (Ladybank). She had an 84.

A third Ladybank member, Susan Jackson , was eliminated in a six-way play-off featuring those who tied on 167. Only the 31st and 32nd places in the match-play draw were up for grabs but Susan went out at the third extra hole.

Auchterarder's Emily Ogilvy, who had a great run through to the final at Barassie 12 months ago, made it through with precious little to spare. Emily, still struggling with the after-effects of a serious winter training mishap with a fitness machine. added an 82 to her opening 84 for 166 - only one shot out of being in the play-off.

In the play-off, Elmwood College lecturer Anne Laing, seven times a Scottish finalist and three times the title winner, bowed out at the second extra hole.

There were three members of the extended Vass family from Tain in the play-off - 14 year old Julie Vass, her 16-year-old sister Sammy and their aunt, Anne Ryan.

Only Sammy survived with a par 4 at the first hole third time round in the play-off.

Laura McLardy (Murcar Links), who had holed from off the green for a par at the 18th, birdied the third hole to clinch a place, alongwith Sammy Vass in the match-play.

Sammy Vass, Kelsey MacDonald and Samantha Leslie (Westhill) are due to sit a Higher English exam in the Moray clubhouse today.

Hopefully, Samantha will shake off the disappointment of a second-round 90 (44-46) which shattered her hopes of qualifying for the match-play after an encouraging 78 in the first round.

Samantha does have the consolation of participation in the Clark Rosebowl match-play competition.


8.30 K MacDonald v S Vass, S Wood v A F Ramsay, L Hendry v K Marshall, J Carthew v M Tough.

9.02 K Walker v E Ogilvy, M Summers v R Livingstone, J Turner v C Gruber, E Fairnie v M Pow.

9.34 C-M Carlton v D Pocock, D Jackson v E Moffat, M Briggs v E Briggs, P Williamson v L Murray.

10.0 C Hargan v L Bennett, K Blackwood v M Thomson, S Bishop v C MacDonald, L McLardy v L Kenney.


10.48 Anne Ryan v Belinda Murphy.

10.54 Jill Harrison v Alyson McGinnigle.

11.02 Samantha Leslie v Heather Anderson.

11.10 Lynne Terry v Helen Faulds.

11.17 Tracy Laughland v Eileen Gillespie.

11.26 Mary Smith v Liz Stewart.

11.34 Anne Brownie v Carol Wilson.

11.42 Hilary Laughland v Susan Jackson.