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Monday, September 07, 2009

Cambridgeshire pair first winners of new

PING Plate at Gainsborough Golf Club

Cambridgeshire golfers Lilias Adamson and Sue Pearson are the first winners of the new Plate Final of the 2009 PING Women’s four-ball better-ball tournament of England.
The pair, from Ely City, set an early target of 43 points over the Thonock Park course at PING’s Gainsborough Golf Club – and it was never beaten. They win a choice of PING clubs or PING Collection clothing to the value of £400.
They also qualify for the UK final of the Volvo Masters Amateur Tour at Kingsbarns, Fife in October.
“This is unbelievable, “ said Lilias. “We just came for a nice day out. We’ve had a wonderful day and to win is the icing on the cake.”
Their closest challengers on a warm, sunny day were two pairs who each scored 41 points. The runners-up, on countback, were Worcestershire’s Lynn Wilson and Naomi Austin, 18, who pipped county colleagues Holli Ward, 17, and Emily Hyde, 14, by virtue of their better back nine.
The PING Tournament – which is run by the English Women’s Golf Association – has a new format this year. The best 60 club winners qualified for the Grand Final, which takes place tomorrow, while the next 72 pairs went through to today’s new Plate Final. It was a change which met with approval from the winners.
“I think it’s great,” said Lilias. She and Sue won their club qualifier with 42 points – just before Lilias injured her back and had to give golf a miss for three months. “I think the club qualifier was my last full round before I hurt my back – and this is my first full round since I started playing again. I’ve just done a few nine holes on the par-3 course, with the grandchildren.”
There were no signs of rustiness, however. The two golfers cogged together extremely well on a course neither had seen before.
“It’s a very nice course and the fairways are wide, compared with ours, which takes the pressure off,” said Sue.
Last week, both players were fitted for new PING clubs. “Now we’re really eager to get hold of them,” said Lilias. Scoring in the Plate Final was good all day. The first pair out, Chris Williamson and Natalie Crute of Hartlepool, set an impressive target with 40 points. This was soon matched by Elizabeth Crow and Anne Wright from Northamptonshire – and then passed by the eventual winners and the two other prizewinners.
Among the players were Hampshire’s Jenny Readman who was one of the winners of last year’s Grand Final. This year she was partnered by England senior international Chris Stirling and the pair managed a very creditable 39 points.
“It was lovely to have the chance to come back,” said Jenny. “And I love my PING clubs. I’ve cut three shots off my handicap, to nine, since I got them after last year’s competition.”
The day included the opportunity for competitors to tour the PING factory, to take advantage of the service at PING’s fitting centre and to enter other competitions.
Linda Shapley of Chartham Park, Sussex, won a putter while Julia Gibson of Wirral Ladies, Cheshire, won the nearest the pin competition for a PING driver.
Leading final scores
43 pts Lilias Adamson and Sue Pearson (Ely City).
41 Naomi Austin and Lyn Wilson (North Worcestershire); Emily Hyde and Holli Ward (Bewdley Pines).
40 Elizabeth Crow and Anne Wright (Delapre Park); Chris Williamson and Natalie Crute (Hartlepool).
39 Chris Hall and Julie Tsang (Harborne); Sandy Kinch and Gill O’Donnell (Easthamstead Ladies); Gillian Nutter and Dee Kay (Formby Ladies’); Julie Daniels and Wendy Bushell (Hennerton); Chris Stirling and Jenny Readman (Meon Valley).

Lyndsey Hewison
Press & PR Officer