Tuesday, September 15, 2015


Nottinghamshire edged into the lead at Women’s County Finals today with a 5-4 win over Buckinghamshire at Frilford Heath Golf Club. 
They made it two wins out of two matches so far when they pulled through a very close game which, for much of this afternoon, looked odds on to be a half. 
Meanwhile, Lancashire played themselves right back into the championship with a resounding 8-1 win over Sussex. Gloucestershire also put their first point on the board with a narrow 5-4 win over Essex. 
It means that, after the second day’s play, Nottinghamshire lead with four points, while Lancashire, Essex, Gloucestershire and Sussex each have two points. Buckinghamshire have yet to score.
Nottinghamshire have returned to County Finals after an absence of 15 years, but have wasted no time in making their presence felt. “We are very proud of them all,” said team captain Kathryn Horberry, while vice-captain Pam Loch added:
 “We are overwhelmed and absolutely delighted with a second win. It was a hard fought battle.”
The team led 2-1 after the morning foursomes, but Buckinghamshire again displayed great determination in the singles and the teams were soon neck and neck. 
But Notts county champion Rachel Boulton won 4/2 and Lauren Spray by 5/4 to put the team in touching distance of the win (Lauren Spray is pictured top © Leaderboard Photography). Laura Morris took them over the line when she came through a very tight game with a 2 and 1 win. 
Lancashire bounced straight back from their opening defeat with an emphatic win. They declared their intentions with a 3-0 win in the foursomes and international Sophie Lamb set the tone for the singles when she scored seven-under par to win her game, defeating an opponent who was three-under.
Senior international Katherine Russell was the only Sussex player who managed to prevent a clean sweep, winning the bottom match 3 and 2. 
Lancashire captain Brenda Flett said her reaction to the team’s first day defeat was to tell them: “Just go out and play as well as I know you can – and they have excelled. They have this great team spirit, they gel so well and they support each other.”
Gloucestershire were on the back foot after they trailed 2-1 in today’s foursomes, and Essex widened the gap when Hannah Moul played well under par to win the top singles and Ashley Croft played quite unstoppable golf for her point. 
But the Gloucestershire players produced a fighting performance to take the remaining four singles and snatch their win. Alex Saunders and Grace McLaughlin were both behind in the early stages but came through with wins, as did England international Bethan Popel. Becky Gibbs claimed the team’s winning point in great style when she hit her tee shot on the par three 17th to within 18 inches of the pin – and her birdie was conceded. 
Team captain Corrinne Durber said: “We really wanted to get a win on the board and the girls went out with true grit and determination.” 
Tomorrow’s matches are: Lancashire v Essex, Gloucestershire v Buckinghamshire, Nottinghamshire v Sussex. 
Because of an adverse weather forecast the format for tomorrow’s play has been changed. Each match will consist of one foursome and four singles. Play will start, as usual, at 8.30am. 
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Lyndsey Hewison
Press Officer
England Golf
07825 752 193