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Sunday, June 15, 2008

Roseanne Niven beaten in semi-final


Top seed Caroline Hedwall from Sweden will play compatriot Anna Nordqvist, the seventh qualifier for the match-play stages, in this afternoon's 18-hole final of the Ladies British open amateur championship at North Berwick.
Caroline has a handicap of +5.4 while Anna has a rating of +4. Caroline Hedwall played 83 holes to reach the final; Anna Nordqvist played 79 holes.
Caroline beat 19-year-old twin sister Jacqueline, the 26th qualifier, by 4 and 3 with one-over-par figures. Seventh seed Anna beat 14th qualifier Roseanne Niven (Crieff) by 2 and 1.
It will be the first all-Swedish final in the history of the championship first played in 1893.
The last Swedish player to take the title was Louise Stahle in 2004 and 2005.
Whoever wins the final it will be the sixh year in a row the title has been won by a Continental player and the third consecutive final to feature two players from the Continent.
The 6ft 1iin Nordqvist, who had her 21st birthday on June 10 and was beaten in the 2006 and 2007 finals, becomes the fifth player to appear in three successive finals.
She follows in the footsteps of Lady Margaret Scott, who won the first three championships in 1893-94-95; Cecil Leitch, who won in 1914 and after the championship resumed following a hiatus for the World War I years, won again in 1920 and 1921; Pam Barton, who lost the 1934 and 1935 finals before winning in 1936, and Mickey Walker who won in 1971 and 1972 before losing the 1973 final.
The meeting of the Hedwalls was an historic occasion ... no twins had ever contested a British semi-final previously. Jacqueline led twice by one hole on the outward half, winning the first and the sixth with pars but Caroline won the third with a birdie 4 m the seventh with a par 4 and the eighth with a par 5 to be one up for the first time on the ninth tee.
Jacqueline had her third bogey in five holes to lose the 11th and go two down. She also bogeyed the 13th and 15th to lose both holes and the match by 4 and 3.
Caroline was approximately one over par to her sister's five over. They completed the 15 holes in just under three hours.
Nordqvist reached the turn in one-under-par 36 to be two up. She won the first with a conceded birdie and regained a one-hole lead with a birdie 4 at the third after the Scot had won back the second with a par 4.
Niven was conceded a birdie 3 to win the fifth and be back on level terms but Nordqvist quickly got back in the lead with a par at the sixth.
Nordqvist birdied the ninth to be out in 36 and two up.
Niven birfdied the short 10th to cut her deficit to one but her opponent was always quick to reply and she did it again with a birdie 4 at the 11th to regain a two-hole lead.
The Swede's advantage extended to three holes with a bogey 5 at the 13th but Roseanne was not finished yer. She chipped in for a birdie 2 at the 15th and holed a 4ft second putt to win the 16th.
One up on the 17th tee, Nordqvist sank a birdie putt to win that hole and the match by 2 and 1.
The tie had lasted under 3 1/2 hours. Nordqvist was approximately one under par, Niven two over.