'England Golf Women’s County Final
Delamere Forest 16 - 20th September
Reports from England Golf - Lincolnshire’s story
Despite being 3-0 down going after the morning foursomes, Lincolnshire were able to secure their first point of the week after winning five out of six available points in the afternoon’s single matches. The stand-out performance came from Meg Illingworth who won 5&4 over Gabby Shacklady.
Lincolnshire’s India Clyburn, Billie-Jo Smith and Ellise Rymer all won by one whilst the game was secured by Helen McDougal on the 17th after beating Jessica Adams of Surrey by two.
Lincolnshire Team Captain, Helen Dawson, said the team proved what they could do: “They believe in themselves, they believe in each other and this afternoon they proved they can do it. You have to be confident, we all think we’re going to win, we all hope we’re going to win, we’ll all do our best to win.
She added: “[after the morning foursomes] I think we thought we had nothing to lose, just go for it and don’t play it too safe.”
Buckinghamshire collected their first win of the Finals when they beat Lincolnshire 7-2.
On the previous day, Lincolnshire recovered from losing the foursomes 3-0 to beat Surrey 5-4 but there was no similar reprieve this time. They were again whitewashed in the morning and then also lost the first two singles 5 & 4 when first Indian Clyburn went down to Alice Kozlowsky and then Billie-Jo Smith was beaten by Thalia Kirby. Ellise Rymer did pull a point back with a 3 & 2 victory over Grace Rigby-Walden but Rosie Bee Kim and Olivia Lee extended Buckinghamshire’s advantage before Helen McDougall earned a consolation point for Lincolnshire with a 6&5 win over Susanna Mitterer.
Gloucestershire went into the third day with victories over Norfolk and Surrey already under their belts and against Lincolnshire they quickly got into their stride with foursomes victories from Bethan Popel and Alex Saunders, Ffion Tynan and Issy Hopkins and Claudia Ovens and Ebonie Lewis.
Lewis beat Helen McDougall 4 & 2 in the top singles while Popel secured a 5 & 3 victory over Tilly Garfoot and Tynan and Saunders halved against Billie-Jo Smith and Ellise Rymer. India Clyburn and Meg Illingworth secured consolation victories for Lincolnshire against Sam Round and Megan Bartlett.
In the first match on the course Lincolnshire earned a narrow 5-4 win over Norfolk helped in no small measure by the battling Billy-Jo Smith who was four down with four to play against Eve Neild in the singles. However, she escaped with a halved match helped by hitting a three-wood to three-feet at the par-5 final hole.
The match was close right from the start with the two teams sharing the foursomes 1 ½ – 1 ½ before Lincolnshire squeezed home with victories from India Clyburn, Tilly Garfoot and Meg Illingworth in the singles. Abigail O’Riordan and Tiffany Mills were the winners for Norfolk.
The final day of this year’s championship was all about the battle to finish second behind Gloucestershire and in the end it was Lincolnshire who were to claim that spot after a 5 ½ – 3 ½ victory over Yorkshire. Lincolnshire went into lunch 2-1 up in the foursomes and wins from India Clyburn, Ellise Rymer and Tilly Garfoot plus a half point from Sophie Beardsall was enough to see them over the line.
Thank you to all the supporters who travelled to Cheshire and for all the messages on Facebook.