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January 2006 Archive

Tuesday 31st January 2006

This year’s women’s world amateur team golf championship - in South Africa in October - will be the first in the 42-year history of the Espirito Santo Trophy tournament to feature teams of three players from Scotland, England, Ireland and Wales.
Previously, the four home unions contributed players to a Great Britain & Ireland team chosen by the Ladies Golf Union international selection committee.
It was purely a coincidence that the last Espirito Santo Trophy tournament – a four-round stroke-play event in which the best two individual scores count daily for each team – at Puerto Rico in 2004 produced the worst ever finish by a Great Britain & Ireland team.
Captained by Kim Andrew, the line-up of Clare Queen (Scotland), Emma Duggleby (England) and Stephanie Evans (Wales) finished joint 25th.
GB&I women’s teams never won the event, named after Mrs Ricardo Espirito Santo Trophy (Portugal), who put up the trophy,  but had 18 top-10 finishes and were runners-up in 1974 in the Dominican Republic and in 1992 in Vancouver.
Andy Salmon, chief executive of the LGU, explained the background background to the fundamental change which opens the door for far more Scottish players to compete every two years in the women’s world amateur team championship.
“We had been talking with the four national organisations about this for well over a year and last November, at a meeting of the LGU and national organisations, it was agreed to enter four teams from 2006 onwards.
“Really, this was an inevitable step following the men's decision to do likewise in 2000. At the LGU, we are comfortable with the decision and look forward to seeing how the four teams get on this year.”
The 2006 tournament will be played at Stellenbosch Golf Club, South Africa from October 18 to 21.
The men’s world amateur team championship for the Eisenhower Trophy goes on at the same venue just over a week later, from October 26 to 29.
Great Britain & Ireland men’s teams had a much better record in this tournament which was first played in 1958. GB&I won the trophy four times (1964-1976-1988-1998) and were runners-up on three occasions.
Scotland, England, Ireland and Wales made their debuts as separate entities in 2002 at Kuala Lumpur. United States won, as usual, England came seventh, Wales 14th and Ireland 28th. Scotland did not make an auspicious start. Jack Doherty, Graham Gordon and Simon Mackenzie finished 21st as a team.
Much worse was to follow at the second attempt. In 2004 at Puerto Rico, Scotland, represented by Stuart Wilson, George Murray and Jamie McLeary, finished 31st with a total of 440 (United States won by nine shots with 407. Wales were seventh, England joint eighth and Ireland joint 17th).
There was at least one Scot, sometimes two, in the Eisenhower Trophy-winning Great Britain & Ireland teams of 1964 (Ronnie Shade), 1976 (Ian Hutcheon and Steve Martin), 1988 (Jim Milligan) and 1998 (Lorne Kelly).
Too late, of course, to ask  the question: Is it not better to have one very strong GB&I team containing the best players from all four home countries competing on the world stage rather than four separate – on the face of it, weaker – teams representing Scotland, England, Ireland and Wales?
The deed is done, the die is cast for better or for worse.
Perhaps Stellenbosch in October will signal the turning point for Scotland men’s teams in the Eisenhower Trophy.
Let’s hope that the first Scotland women’s team in the Espirito Santo Trophy do better than 21st or even 31st in their debut.

Date for your diary / correction to Wee Yellow Book
Falkirk Golf Club Ladies Open.
Margaret Tough writes "There is a error regarding the date of our Ladies Open in the Yellow Book. The correct date is SATURDAY 29TH APRIL not 26th April"

SGU Press Release
Scots To Host European Men's Team Championship

The most prestigious team event in European men's amateur golf is to be played at Western Gailes in Ayrshire next year.
The Scottish Golf Union (SGU) will host the 25th European team championship, a bi-annual six-man team challenge, which Scotland has won on five occasions and been runner-up six times. The Scots’ last win came in Sweden in 2001, when the team included Marc Warren, winner of the 2005 Challenge Tour.
Preparations for staging the event were given a financial boost earlier this month, when The Royal & Ancient in St Andrews announced the award of a £15,000 grant to the SGU, specifically for the event.
The grant, which stems from income from The Open Championship, was part of a new series of grants aimed at supporting the development of golf around the world.
SGU chief executive, Hamish Grey said, “We are delighted to be hosting this major championship and are very grateful to The R&A for their funding and to Western Gailes Golf Club for holding the event on their outstanding links.
“With over 20 European countries taking part, the European Team Championship has always been one of the most high profile events in the amateur golfing calendar. It offers unrivalled sponsorship opportunities and we will be making every effort to secure further backing and support to ensure that we put on an event that Scotland can be proud of.”
Western Gailes secretary Ian Sproule added, “We look forward to welcoming the Scottish Golf Union and the many teams from Europe who we are sure will find the links a true test of golf.”
The European Team Championship is played over five days and consists of two phases – 36 holes stroke play qualifying over the first two days, followed by three days of match play within flights.
Past competitors in the event include an array of the biggest names in European golf today, including Colin Montgomerie, Sergio Garcia, Luke Donald, Lee Westwood,  Padraig Harrington and Thomas Levet.

Monday 30th January 2006

Competing under maiden name, Dundee’s Kathryn Imrie, pictured right, finished tied 16th in the Australia Lady Professional Golfers’ Players’ Championship at Club Pelican, Queensland (on Sukanday).
Kathryn, now 38, had rounds of 77, 72 and 74 for a seven-over-par total of 223, which earned her 2,413 Australian dollars.
Queensland player Rebecca Stevenson won the A$30,000 first prize and the title with scores of 71, 69 and 72 for four-under-par 212.
She won by one shot from another home-state player Katherine Hull (Queensland) and Spain’s Ana Larraneta who each received A$17,000.
Katherine score 74, 67 and 74 while Ana had 74, 70 and 71.
England’s Laura Davies was the leading UK player in joint 11th place on 220 with scores of 74, 72 and 74 to pick up a cheque for A$3,250.
In hot and humid conditions, Inverness-based New Zealander Liz McKinnon missed the 36-hole cut by three shots with scores of 79 and 80 for 159
Club Pelican, Queensland.
Par 71
212 Rebecca Stevenson (Queensland) 71 69 72.
215 Katherine Hull (Queensland) 74 67 74, Ana Larraneta (Spain) 74 70 71.
216 Joanne Mills (NSW) 72 74 70.
217 Lindsey Wright (Victoria) 73 68 76, Sara Beautell (Spain) 72 73 72.
Other totals:
220 Laura Davies (England) 74 72 74.
223 Kathryn Imrie (Scotland) 77 72 74.
159 Liz McKinnon (NZ) 79 80

Sunday 29th January 2006

Winning Scotland team and manager Ian Rae with trophy after their victory over France in three-day international match at Montpellier, Masane

Scotland’s men’s amateur international golf team beat France 5 ½-3 ½ after bad weather ruled out play on the third and final day of their match at Montpellier Massane (on Saturday).
The Scots took the first-day singles 4-2 and then shared the second-day foursomes 1 ½-1 ½ to lead by 2pt.
The most successful Scots player was Lloyd Saltman (Craigielaw) with two wins out of two.
Scottish Golf Union national coach Ian Rae, captain and manager of the Scots team, said:
"This encounter was a tremendous occasion for our players, experienced and less experienced, to play against a very solid French team.
“I hope that this match can become an annual event at the beginning of each year, contributing to the preparation of our players before a long season to the United Kingdom and abroad.”
Montpellier Massane, France.
Day 1 Singles: Scotland 4, France 2.
Lloyd Saltman (Craigielaw) bt Julien Guerrier 3 and 2.
Glenn Campbell (Blairgowrie) bt Jean Jacques Wolf 1 hole,
Paul O’Hara (Colville Park) lost to Julien Grillon 1 hole.
Stuart Wilson (Forfar) bt Alex Kaleka 4 and 3,
Scott Henry (Cardross) bt Victor Dubuisson 5 and 4.
George Murray (Earlsferry Thistle) lost to Tony Raillard 4 and 3.
Day 2 Foursomes: Scotland 1 ½, France 1 ½
Murray & Saltman bt Guerrier & Grillon 4 and 3.
Henry & O’Hara halved with Kaleka & Dubuisson.
Wilson & Campbell lost to Wolf & Raillard 5 and 4.

Walker Cup Scot Richie Ramsay, pictured right, broke par in each of the four rounds of the Lake Macquarie international amateur international golf championship over the Belmont Golf Club course at Newcastle, New South Wales – but that earned the Royal Aberdeen player  “only” a share of seventh place, so high was the standard of play.
Ramsay had rounds of 69, 70, 70 and 71 for an eight-under-par total of 288.
England’s Adam Gee, 25, from Leatherhead, Surrey,  followed in the footsteps of compatriot Nick Dougherty – the title-winner in 2001 – but he had to go to a fifth extra hole in a sudden-death play-off to beat a strong-finishing Queenslander, Jason Day after they had tied on 15-under-par 273.
Gee, winner of the Berkshire Trophy last year when he was also runner-up in the South African open amateur stroke-play championship,  had started the final day two shots ahead of the field, his nearest challenger being Mitchell Brown. Gee increased his lead to seven shots with eight to play.
Then the Englishman ran up three bogeys. At the same time Jason Day put together a barnstorming finish of birdie, par, eagle, birdie, birdie for a course record 63 for 273.
Gee also hit that mark with a closing 69.
Scott Jamieson (Cathkin Braes) tied for 16th place on 284 with 71, 73, 72 and 68.
Craig Watson (East Renfrewshire), a third Scot playing in the championship, failed to survive the halfway cut with 71 and 79 for 150 – three shots too many.
Belmont Golf Club, Newcastle, New South Wales.
Players from Australia unless stated
273 A Gee (Eng) 69 69 66 69, J Day 68 72 70 63 (Gee won play-off at fifth extra hole).
274 Won Jon Lee 66 71 73 64.
275 R Gallichan 67 76 65 67.
276 R Bezuidenhout 67 72 70 67.
279 M Brown 67 71 68 73.
280 R Ramsay (Sco) 69 70 70 71, R Blizard 70 74 68 68.
Other totals:
283 B Parker (Eng) 72 69 70 71.
284 S Jamieson (Sco) 71 73 72 68.
285 J Moul (Eng) 66 71 74 74.
287 G Wolstenholme (Eng) 71 71 72 73, Z Gould (Wal) 70 72 74 71.
298 G Slater 73 73 79 73.

Eisenhower Trophy
Hugh Hunter, pictured right, the globe-trotting Scottish Golf Union past president from Auchterarder and a regular reader of kirkwoodgolf's news bulletins, sends us a message from his latest travels:
"Greetings. At present in sunny, hot Bangkok, moving to Phuket on Monday for some golf.  Keeping in touch with golf news via web sites. Picked up this snippet. Apologies if you know.
"The Eisenhower Trophy is to be held in South Africa later in the year, and the South African Golf Association  has decided to hold their men's open amateur championship on the same courses to give any team members the chance of playing a top-class event at the same venue.
"The South Africans have also increased the number of competitors in the hope of attracting a large entry.
"Entries close for the event on January 30; it will be interesting to see which countries take advantage of this; in particular, will there be a Scottish representative. Lloyd Saltman would be an obvious choice. 
"The putting surfaces are notorious for their nap in South Africa, so the more practice players can obtain the better."
The Espirito Santo Trophy - the women's world amateur team championship - will also be hosted by Stellenbosch Golf Club, South Africa this October.
Later this week, Colin Farquharson will have a story on about this year's Espirito Santo Trophy and why it will be different from any one held previously.

Saturday 28th January 2006

Scotland held a 2pt lead over France at the start of the third and final day of their international match at Montpellier Massane on Saturday.
The Scots took the first-day singles 4-2 and then shared the second-day foursomes 1 ½-1 ½.
[Photo right taken from FFG website.
Back Row - Left to right: George Murray, Scott Henry, Lloyd Satlman.
Front Row - left to right: Glenn Campbell, Stuart Wilson, Paul O'Hara, manager Ian Rae. ]
Day 1 Singles
Lloyd Saltman bt Julian Guerrier 3 and 2.
Glenn Campbell bt Jean Jacques Wolf 1 hole,
Paul O’Hara lost to Julien Grillon 1 hole.
Stuart Wilson bt Alex Kaleka 4 and 3,
Scott Henry bt Victor Dubuisson 5 and 4.
George Murray lost to Tony Reillard 4 and 3.
Day 2 Foursomes
Murray & Saltman bt Guerrier & Grillon 4 and 3.
Henry & O’Hara halved with Kaleka & Dubuisson.
Wilson & Campbell lost to Wolf & Reillard 5 and 4.

Walker Cup Scot Richie Ramsay is in joint fifth place with one round to go in the stroke-play stages of the Lake Macquarie amateur international golf championship at Belmont Golf Club, Sydney, New South Wales.
The Royal Aberdeen player has had rounds of 69, 70 and 70 for a seven-under-par tally of 209 through 54 holes.
Leading the field by two shots is Englishman Adam Gee with rounds of 69, 69 and 68 for 12-under-par 204.
Scott Jamieson (Cathkin Braes) is on 216 after scores of 71, 73 and 72.
The leading 32 players in the 72-hole totals comprise the field for the match-play championship.
Players with 147 (+3) of better survived the halway cut.
Craig Watson (East Renfrewshire) missed out with 71 and 79 for 150.
Players from Australia unless stated
204 Adam Gee (England) 69 69 68.
206 Mitchell Brown 67 71 68.
208 Richard Gallichan 67 76 65, Michael Raseta 71 69 68.
209 Richie Ramsay (Scotland) 69 70 70, Rudi Bezlidenhout 67 72 70, Jamie Moul (England) 66 71 72.
Other totals:
213 Ben Parker (England) 68 72 73.
214 Gary Wolstenholme (England) 71 71 72.
216 Scott Jamieson (Scotland) 71 73 72, ZackGould (Wales)70 72 74.
220 Ben Westgate (Wales) 75 75 70.
225 Grant Slater (England) 73 73 79.
149 Ed Richardson (England) 70 79.
150 Craig Watson (Scotland) 71 79.
151 Liew Matthews (Wales) 71 80.
156 Joe Lyons (Ireland) 76 80.

Friday 27th January 2006

England overcame opposition from Finland, Germany and Spain to win the Costa Ballena Quadrangular men's amateur international match in Spain for the second year in succession. The Costa Ballena competition is played on a round robin basis, each match comprising three morning foursomes and six afternoon singles. The last day of the competition was affected by heavy rain that became so bad that the afternoon's single matches had to be cancelled. Combined scores from day one saw England defeat Finland 5-4. On day two, in spite of winning all their morning foursomes, England suffered a 5-4 loss against Spain.
On the final day, with all to play for, the England team rallied convincingly to again win all their foursomes in the last match against Germany.
The final positions for the tournament were:
England 4 pt, Germany 3, Spain 3, Finland 2 points.
The England team was:
Gary Boyd (Northants Co), Oliver Fisher (West Essex), David Horsey (Styal), John Parry (Harrogate), James Ruth (Tavistock), Paul Waring (Bromborough).

Two home-state players, US senior women’s amateur golf champion Diane Lang from Weston and Monica Von Glahn (North Palm Beach) won the 60th International women’s four-ball golf championship at Orangebrook Country Club, Hollywood in Florida.
It was the fourth and final event on this year's Orange Blossom Tour.
Lang, a former US Tour player who has her own website – she buys and sells houses in south Florida, and Von Glahn won by 3 and 2 in the final against another all-Florida pairing of Michelle Hartnell (Miami) and Paula Fitzpatrick (Homestead).
In the semi-finals Michelle and Paul had ended the title hopes of Stirling University’s top-seeded pair, Olivia Briggs from Manchester and Dawn Dewar (Monifieth) with an 18th-green victory.
In the other semi-final, Lang and Von Glahn had scored a surprisingly big win – 5 and 4 – over former champions Carole Semple Thompson, this year’s US Curtis Cup captain from Sewickley, Pennsylvania, and Marlene Streit, Canadian-born but now resident in Florida.
Orangebrook Country Club, Hollywood, Florida
Michelle Hartnell (Florida) & Paula Fitzpatrick (Florida) bt Olivia Briggs (Stirling Univ) & Dawn Dewar (Stirling Univ) 1 hole.
Diane Lang (Florida) & Monica Von Glahn (Florida) bt Carol Semple Thompson (Pennysylvania) & Marlene Streit (Canada) 5 and 4.
Lang & Von Glahn bt Hartnell & Fitzpatrick 3 and 2.

At the end of the second day of the Lake Macquarie International amateur championship at Belmont Golf Club, New South Wales, England's Jamie Moul continued to hold joint top spot with Australian Won Joon Lee on seven-under-par 137.
Another England player, Adam Gee, is one shot behind on 138.
Royal Aberdeen's Walker Cup player, Richie Ramsay is the leading Scot on 139 after a second-round 70.
The weather conditions on day two were less favourable than Thursday, but this did not hinder Adam Gee carding another round of 69 to bring his total for 36 holes to 138. As there were only nine players who scored less than 70 in the windy conditions this was an admirable result.
Gary Wolstenholme scored a consistent 71 to bring his total to 142 but Ed Richardson struggled to maintain his first day form and returned a score of 79 for his second round.
Teenager Ben Parker, who was not selected for England's representative squad in the tournament but is a regular England international, is still playing well and sits three shots behind the leaders after returning a score of 72 on the second day.
A full leaderboard can be found on the New South Wales Golf Association website in the Tournaments and Events section.
137 Jamie Moul (England) 66, 71; Won Joon Lee (Australia) 66, 71.
138 Adam Gee (England) 69, 69; Ray Beaufils (Australia) 70, 68; Mitchell Brown (Australia) 67, 71.
Other scores:
139 Richie Ramsay (Scotland) 69 70.
140 Ben Parker (England) 68 72.
142 Zack Gould (Wales) 70, 72, Gary Wolstenholme (England) 71, 71.

It will be an all-American final in the 60th International Women’s Four-ball golf championship at Orangebrook Country Club, Hollywood in Florida.
Stirling University’s Dawn Dewar from Monifieth and Olivia Briggs (Delamere Forest), the leading qualifiers for the match-play stages, were beaten on the last green by the Florida pairing of Michelle Hartnell (Miami) and Paula Fitzpatrick (Homestead).
US senior women’s amateur champion Diane Lang from Weston, Florida and Monica Von Glahn (North Palm Beach) beat former title-winners Carol Semple Thompson (Sewickley, Pennsylvania) and Marlene Streit (Canada) – both former British women’s open amateur champions – by 5 and 4 in the other semi-final.
Carol is this year’s United States Curtis Cup team captain for the Bandon Dunes, Oregon match against Great Britain & Ireland on July 29 and 30.
Diane Lang and Monica Von Glahn beat the other Stirling University pairing to make the match-play stages – Emma Tipping (Sandiway) and Alex Marshall (Royal Cinque Ports) in the quarter-finals.
This is the final event of the four that make up annual Orange Blossom Tour for women amateurs in southern Florida.
Orangebrook Country Club, Hollywood, Florida
Michelle Hartnell (Florida) & Paula Fitzpatrick (Florida) bt Olivia Briggs (Stirling Univ) & Dawn Dewar (Stirling Univ) 1 hole.Diane Lang (Florida) & Monica Von Glahn (Florida) bt Carol Semple Thompson (Pennysylvania) & Marlene Streit (Canada) 5 and 4.

Aberdonian Richie Ramsay (Royal Aberdeen) was only three shots off the pace after the first round of the Lake Macquarie amateur international golf championship at Belmont Golf Club, Sydney in New South Wales.
The Walker Cup man, a student at Stirling University, had a three-under-par 69 to be to the top Scot in a share of 12th place.
Leading the field on 66 in good scoring conditions were Craig Hancock from Tasmania, England’s Jamie Moul and Won Joon Lee (New South Wales).
Ben Parker, the Germany-based professional's son who won the prestigious Orange Junior Bowl boys' title in Florida over the Festive period, was in joint ninth place on 68.
England's Adam Gee was on the 69 mark alongside Richie Ramsay.
Craig Watson (East Renfrewshire) was on the 71 mark alongside Scott Jamieson (Cathkin Braes) and England's Gary Wolstenholme.
66 Craig Hancock (Tasmania), Jamie Moul (England), Won Joon Lee (New South Wales).
Other scores:
68 Ben Parker (England).
69 Richie Ramsey (Scotland), Adam Gee (England).
70 Ed Richardson (England), Zac Gould (Wales).
71 Craig Watson (Scotland), Gary Wolstenholme (England), Scott Jamieson (Scotland), Liew Matthews (Wales).
73 Grant Slater (England).
75 Ben Westgate (Wales).
76 Joe Lyons (Ireland).
83 Dan Seaman (England).

Thursday 26th January 2006

Stirling University got one pairing through to the last four but lost another as the 60th Women’s International Four-ball amateur golf championship entered its match-play stages at Orangebrook Country Club, Hollywood in Florida.
Top seeds Olivia Briggs (Delamere Forest) and Dawn Dewar (Monifieth) had a 3 and 2 win over Marianne Springer and Mary Hanyak and will now play Michelle Hartnell and Paula Fitzpatrick from Wellington, Florida in the semi-finals.
Stirling’s Emma Tipping (Sandiway) and Alex Marshall (Royal Cinque Ports) lost by one hole to Diane Lang, the US senior women’s champion from Weston, Florida and Monica Von Glahn of North Palm Beach, also Florida.
Diane, a one-time LPGA Tour player, and Monica will play the No 2 seeds and former title winners, Carol Semple Thompson, this year’s US Curtis Cup captain from Sewickley, Pennsylvania, and Marlene Streit, originally from Canada but now a resident of West Palm Beach, Florida.
Carol and Marlene, both legendary names in the world of women’s amateur golf over the past few decades, won by one hole over Karen Benson and Susan Cohn.
Orangebrook Country Club, Hollywood, Florida.
Players from US unless stated.
Olivia Briggs & Dawn Dewar (Stirling Unv) bt Marianne Springer & Mary Hanyak 3 and 2.
Michelle Hartnell & Paula Fitzpatrick bt Marianne Towersey & Peggy Woodruff 2 holes.
Carol Semple Thompson & Marlene Streit (Canada) bt Karen Benson & Susan Cohn 1 hole.
Diane Lang & Monica Von Glahn bt Emma Tipping & Alex Marshall (Stirling Univ) 1 hole.

How much do you think your local driving range is worth? A lot of money probably if the sale announced by Strutt & Parker's Leisure and Hotel Department of the Ealing Golfing Driving Range is anything to go by.
The range, which occupies one of the best sites in the UK with high visibility from the busy A40 in West London, fetched close to £2million.
The site extends to about 9 acres and was developed in 1965.  It has 36 covered bays with floodlighting which has recently been upgraded.  The site is held on a long lease from Ealing Borough Council with 34 years remaining at an annual ground rent that was reviewed in June 2004. 
The business, excluding the shop and teaching income which was let to a third party, generated sales of over £550,000 in 2003.
The owners had run the business for 20 years and wished to cut back on their business commitments.
Charles Greville-Heygate, the Partner handing the sale said “Very few well-located profitably driving ranges have been sold recently so this was always going to be an interesting sale.  As expected, it generated a large number of site inspections and these resulted in a high percentage of offers over a wide range of prices.  The successful buyer was a new entrant to the market.  The final price agreed was close to the guide price of £2 million.  There were a number of disappointed under-bidders who are still looking for a suitable range to acquire so any range owners considering a sale should contact us”.

R&A Press Release
The R&A has named the Local Final Qualifying (LFQ) courses for the 2008 Open at Royal Birkdale and the 2009 Open at Turnberry.
In 2008, when the Open returns to Birkdale after a break of 10 years, Formby, Hillside, Southport & Ainsdale and West Lancashire will be used for Local Final Qualifying (LFQ).  All four courses have been used on a number of occasions for LFQ and this year, when The Open returns to Hoylake for the first time since 1967, Formby and West Lancashire will be two of the local venues for the final stage of qualifying.
The Open makes a welcome return to Turnberry in 2009 when, Glasgow, Irvine, Kilmarnock (Barassie) and Western Gailes, the same four courses that hosted LFQ in 1994, the most recent Turnberry Open, will once again be used.
Glasgow, Irvine and Western Gailes were three of the four LFQ courses for the 2004 Troon Open

ELGA Press Release
The Lady Sponsors ELGA South East Tournament for 17th consecutive year

For the 17th year in succession The Lady has agreed to sponsor this years South Eastern Division Championships. The event will be held at Hadley Wood Golf Club on the 18th, 19th and 20th July.
The tournament is open to Lady Golfers with single figure handicaps who live in the South East Area. In addition it will also incorporate the S.E. Intermediate Championships for those aged between 18 and 23.
The event organiser, Sheila Marshall, is delighted with the continued support of The Lady and is looking forward to a well-fought contest on this outstanding course, which has hosted the “Open Qualifier” for the last 6 years.


Wednesday 25th January 2006

US College Golf

Colette Murray, recently appointed the first women’s head golf coach at the University of Tennessee Chattanooga since the 1980s, has managed to persuade the university’s authorities that it would be unreasonable to re-start the college’s women’s golf programme in the autumn.
The 24-year-old from Dumfries faced an almost impossible task in trying to recruit at least 10 players from anywhere from a standing start, given that all her rival women’s golf coaches have been recruiting for the 2006-2007 US women’s college golf season for months and have the top prospects signed up already.
“I talked to the assistant director and told him that realistically we were not going to be any good, as a team, if we started, as planned, as early as this autumn,” said Colette.
“I have succeeded in getting the start of the women’s programme at UTC postponed by 12 months. In other words, we start playing for real in the Fall of 2007, by which time, I can potentially get us a very strong team together.
“I want all my players to have signed Letters of Intent (to come to the University of Tennessee Chattanooga) by November 2006, so that I know exactly how I stand, what is going on and where we are going.
“This gives me plenty of time to figure out our schedule of tournaments too. I will also have my sports psychology courses finished by then and be more than halfway though my LPGA qualifications training.”
Miss Murray has made no secret of the fact that any Scottish girl who has a low handicap and a desire to play golf on the US college circuit would be looked upon favourably.
A final word from Colette, who moved to Tennessee from her post as assistant women’s golf coach at Jacksonville State University, Alabama, is that she is “just loving Chattanooga.” which is a good sign.

SGU Press Release
SGU Announces New Team Captains

Former Scottish golf internationalists George Crawford, Barclay Howard and Barrie Douglas were today (Wednesday 25th January) named as Scotland’s team captains for 2006 by the Scottish Golf Union. Allan Brodie was also announced as chairman of selectors.
Following his success in 2005, which included leading the Scots to Home International glory at Royal St George’s, Crawford (Williamwood), pictured right, will continue as Scottish Men’s team captain. Howard (Cochrane Castle) becomes Scottish Youth’s captain, with Douglas (Blairgowrie) taking charge of the Scottish Boy’s team. Brodie (Balmore) will oversee selection of the Scottish Men’s team.
Crawford has a wealth of experience and prior to last year’s Home International success, had also led the Scottish Youth’s team to victory in the 2004 European Championships, defeating England in a momentous final.
“I am obviously delighted to be reappointed,” said Crawford. “We have built a tremendous team spirit and I believe this will contribute to further success for Scotland throughout the 2006 season.”
Also a former internationalist, two-time Walker Cup player (1977 & ’79) and Scottish Amateur Champion in 1977, Brodie’s sights, like Crawford’s, will be set on retaining the Home Internationals title in September and claiming the Eisenhower Trophy at the World Amateur Team Championships in South Africa a month later.
Barclay Howard, pictured left, was Scottish Golfer of the Year in 1994 and 1996, won the Scottish Amateur Stroke Play title in 1997 and claimed the Silver Medal for the leading amateur at The Open Championship at Troon in 1997. Vastly experienced, Howard currently leads Scottish Area Team Champions, Renfrewshire.
One of the main challenges facing Howard will be to emulate Crawford’s success and retain the European Youths Team Championship in Spain in July.
Barrie Douglas, a former Perth & Kinross county player, was capped at Under-18 level for Scotland and Great Britain & Ireland and has successfully managed and captained teams at county level. Douglas is currently the SGU’s elected executive member for Perth & Kinross and last October, he took charge of the Scottish Under-16 team at Gullane in their annual match against England.
Barrie Douglas commented, “There is no doubt that Scotland has the talent and support structures in place to allow players to compete at the highest level. There are many youngsters involved in the SGU’s coaching programmes who undoubtedly have the potential to become future champions and it is very rewarding to be involved in developing that talent.”

Stirling University’s Olivia Briggs and Dawn Dewar led the eight qualifying partnerships into the match-play stages of the 60th Women’s International Four-Ball golf tournament at Orangebrook Country Club, Hollywood in Florida.
Olivia, captain of the Stirling squad of five playing in the final two events of the Orange Blossom Tour and a member of Delamere Forest Golf Club, and Monifieth’s Dawn Dewar had scores of 68 and 69 for an aggregate of 137.
They finished a shot ahead of former winner, Carol Semple Thompson, this year’s US Curtis Cup captain from Pennsylvania, and Marlene Streit from Canada who had rounds of 70 and 68.
Stirling’s Alex Marshall (Royal Cinque Ports) and Emma Tipping (Sandiway) also totalled 138 with a pair of 69s. Carol and Marlene, legendary figures in the world of women’s amateur golf, gained the No 2 seeded spot by virtue of having the better second round.
Only the top eight partnerships qualified for the match-play and it was a tight squeeze. Five partnerships returned totals of 139 – only two more than the top seeds – and they all got through.
Stirling University’s Kylie Walker (Buchanan Castle) and Lindsey Edmunds (from Canada) – deputising for Clare-Marie Carlton (Fereneze), a sixth Stirling student who was laid low by a virus and was unable to make the trip, had scores of 74 and 70 for 144 – five shots too many to beat the cut.
On the same mark were Sarah Carty from The Island Golf Club, Dublin and Eri Maeda from Sarasota, Florida. They had a pair of 72s.
Orangebrook Country Club, Hollywood, Florida.
Players from US unless stated.
137 Olivia Briggs (Stirling Univ) & Dawn Dewar (Stirling Univ) 68 69.
138 Carol Semple Thompson & Marlene Streit (Canada) 70 68, Alex Marshall (Stirling Univ) & Emma Tipping (Stirling Univ) 69 69.
139 Marianne Towersey & Sandy Woodruff 73 66, Michelle Hartnell & Paula Fitzpatrick 72 67, Monica Von Glahn & Diane Lang 71 69, Karen Benson & Sue Cohn 70 69, Mary Hanyak & Marianne Springer 68 71.
144 Kylie Walker (Stirling Univ) & Lindsey Edmunds (Canada) 74 70, Sarah Carty (Ireland) & Eri Maeda 72 72.
Match-play draw
Briggs & Dewar v Springer & Hanyak.
Towersey & Woodruff v Hartnell & Fitzpatrick.
Semple Thompson & Streit v Benson & Cohn.
Tipping & Marshall v Lang & Von Glahn.

Tuesday 24th January 2006

 Stirling University players were well to the fore in the first qualifying round of the Women’;s International Four-Ball Championship at Orangebrook Country Club, Hollywood – the last event of this year’s Orange Blossom Tour in Florida.
 Olivia Briggs (Delamere Forest), beaten at the 21st in last week’s final of the Jones Doherty Challenge Cup at Coral Ridge Country Club, teamed up with Monifieth’s Dawn Dewar to share the lead on 68 with an all-American pairing, Marianne Springer and Mary Hanyak.
Alex Marshall (Royal Cinque Ports), winner of the First Flight title last week, and Stirling team-mate Emma Tipping are in third place on their on the 69 mark.
The leading eight partnerships after the second qualifying round will go forward to the match-play stages.
Last year’s event was won by Ireland’s Marian Riordan from Tipperary and Mary Ann Plunkett, an American player she met a week or two earlier on the Orange Blossom Tour.
Marian has not made the trip to Florida this year but there is an Irish player in the field, 19-year-old Sarah Carty from The Island Golf Club, Dublin.
Sarah, who plays off six, is taking a year out to improve her golf handicap. She and American partner Eri Maeda returned a better-ball 72 to be sharing ninth place.
Kylie Walker (Buchanan Castle), the fifth Stirling University player in the field, was partnered by Lindsey Edmunds from Canada in the absence of the sixth Stirling player, Clare-Marie Carlton (Fereneze) who was laid low by a virus just before the squad flew out from Scotland.
Kylie and Lindsey have a lot of good work to do in the second round if they are going to qualify after a 74 left them in joint 13th place.
Orangebrook Country Club, Hollywood, Florida
First Qualifying Round
Players from US unless stated
68 Dawn Dewar & Olivia Briggs (Stirling Univ), Marianne Springer & Mary Hanyak.
69 Alex Marshall & Emma Tipping (Stirling Univ).
70 Karen Benson & Sue Cohn, Cindy Lucas & Maggie Kril, Carole Semple Thompson & Marlene Streit (Canada).
71 Diane Lang & Monica Von Glahn, Daria Cummings & Susan Choi.
72 Michelle Hartnell & Paula Fitzpatrick, Debbie Mooksang & Terrell Italiano, Sarah Carty (Ireland) & Eri Maeda & Sarah Carty.
73 Mariane Towersey & Sandy Woodruff.
74 Mary Hill & Peggy Woodard, Kylie Walker (Stirling Univ) & Lindsey Edmunds.
76 Jennifer Hendrick & Kay Bullock.
77 Jean Mowry & Judy McCarty.
79 Maureen O’Brien & Ronnie Hall, Fran Green & Jackie Resinger.

R&A Press Release

Advance ticket sales for The Open Championship at Royal Liverpool, Hoylake have matched expectations and spectators are being advised to take advantage of season tickets that can be purchased with maximum discount until the end of January 2006.
Until Tuesday 31 January, a season ticket for the eight days of practice and Championship play can be purchased for £150, a discount of 45% on the normal daily rates. Until the end of April the cost will be £170 and from 1 May it will be £190.
"We believe that all tickets represent excellent value when one considers that all of the world’s top golfers will be competing at Hoylake," said Director of Championships, David Hill.
"It is always our aim to make The Open affordable to all spectators and with that in mind we have structured ticket prices so that season tickets represent particularly good value if purchased well in advance of the Championship."
During the four days of the Championship, a daily ticket costs £50, with concession tickets available. Juniors, under the age of 16, will again be admitted free of charge if accompanied by a responsible adult on the day or by prior application to The R&A.
Ticket applications should be directed in writing to: Ticket Office, The R&A, St Andrews, Fife, Scotland, KY16 9JD; by telephone on: 01334 460010 or through on-line purchasing at

R&A Press Release

Golf’s oldest and most prestigious tournament, The Open Championship, was worth more than £72 million to Scotland last year, according to a comprehensive economic study. The equivalent of £1 million per Championship hole played.
The 2005 Open was at St Andrews in Fife, the home of golf, and it will be played at Carnoustie, Angus, in 2007 and Turnberry, Ayrshire, in 2009.
The Open’s value is calculated through £40 million worth of worldwide television exposure for the host country, and £32.3 million of new money for the Scottish economy from spending by spectators, the media, players, and the tournament organisers, The R&A.
The study was commissioned and jointly funded by The R&A and Scottish Enterprise. It was carried out by Comperio Research, the research arm of leading marketing and media group, IMG.
R&A Director of Championships David Hill said:
"We take The Open Championship to a different venue in the UK each year and these findings will help public bodies and local businesses prepare for the scale of the event arriving on their doorstep.
"Scotland, the home of golf, historically benefits from staging the Open three times in five years".
Tourism, Culture and Sport Minister Patricia Ferguson said:
"These impressive figures demonstrate that The Open, and golf in general, are an important economic driver for the Scottish economy.
"Golf tourism provides enormous potential for growth and Scotland, boasting some of the world’s finest courses, is well placed to exploit the global interest in golf."
In 2005 the St Andrews Open attracted 223,000 spectators of whom more than half (57.2 per cent) were Scottish residents, and almost one third (31.2 per cent) came from elsewhere in the UK.
More than one in 10 (11.5 per cent) came from overseas with the majority (44 per cent) from the US, and others from Australia, Canada and Ireland.
Last year four Executive agencies – Scottish Enterprise, Scottish Development International, EventScotland, and VisitScotland – committed a total of £600,000 over three years to The Open Championship to promote Scotland as the Home of Golf.
At a local level last year’s Open Championship is calculated to have injected a total of £23.1m of new money into the Fife economy.

Europe’s leading golf groups have joined forces to forge a unique partnership.
Instigated by the progressive Leaderboard Group, the Premier Golf Alliance brings together some of the finest names in European golf to offer members stunning deals at top quality golf courses and resorts.
Four prestigious companies have signed up to the exclusive alliance in a move aimed at making top-end golf clubs and resorts more accessible to like-minded golfers from across Europe.
The quartet of golf companies involved is the British-based Leaderboard Group, Open championship venue Westin Turnberry Resort, Le Meridien Group and the MedGroup, which owns La Manga Club in southern Spain.
The Premier Golf Alliance was the brainchild of innovative Leaderboard Group chairman Paul Gibbons, in junction with the group’s sales and marketing director, David Walls.
Walls said: “The idea is to make interaction between selective golf companies easier and to make membership of any of the clubs owned by the four groups more exciting and advantageous in terms of quality opportunities.
“We felt it was about time we worked together to offer our loyal members more value for money with their memberships – and there’s clearly no better way than by taking advantage of terrific deals and initiatives at some of Europe’s leading golf clubs and resorts.”
Between them, the four companies boast 11 of the finest golf courses in Europe and high-class accommodation.
The Leaderboard Group features Chart Hills, the stunning Nick Faldo creation in Kent which is home to the Ladies’ English Open; The Oxfordshire, the majestic championship course designed by Rees Jones which has hosted the Benson & Hedges International; Dale Hill in East Sussex, with its sublime championship golf course designed by European Ryder Cup captain Ian Woosnam and award-winning, four-star hotel; and picturesque Sandford Springs in Kingsclere, Hampshire, unique because of its distinctively challenging 27 holes.
Joining the four Leaderboard clubs are the world-renowned Westin Turnberry Resort on the west coast of Scotland; Le Meridien-owned Penina and San Lorenzo, deemed to be the two finest courses in Portugal, and the revered La Manga Club, owned by the MedGroup, which has held five Spanish Open championships while its fairways have been graced by the likes of Arnold Palmer and Colin Montgomerie..
Leaderboard chairman Paul Gibbons added: “This is a unique opportunity for the 6,000-plus members who belong to the four golf companies which make up the exclusive Premier Golf Alliance to stay and play at some of the most revered resorts and golf clubs across Europe.
“We think it is a great way of saying thank you to the thousands of golfers who regularly support all of our fine golf clubs, and we are proud that the Leaderboard Group is a part of this exciting and exclusive project.
“To be mentioned in the same breath as the likes of the world-famous Westin Turnberry Resort is a privilege indeed and we look forward to a successful partnership.”
Plans are now afoot to expand the alliance to Ireland, Wales and Scandinavia.
The unique alliance comes hard on the heels of Leaderboard’s creative concierge service which offers visitors to all the group’s four clubs the opportunity of having every aspect of their golfing experience mapped out well in advance – all at the touch of a button thanks to the innovative online booking service.
Everything from booking golf at any of the four centres to hiring buggies and from first-tee photography to arranging after-dinner speakers is available by e-mailing
For more details on the Premier Golf Alliance, please contact Leaderboard Group sales and marketing director David Walls on 01580 292106, or e-mail

Gary Player’s ‘Global Journey’ to be Detailed in World Golf Hall of Fame Special Exhibit
St. Augustine, Fla. (January 24, 2006) – The World Golf Hall of Fame will unveil its next special exhibit, “Gary Player: A Global Journey,” on Tuesday, March 21, 2006, during THE PLAYERS Championship. The exhibit will tell the story of the world’s most traveled athlete and explore the impact he has had on the game and beyond.
“The Hall of Fame does a terrific job telling the story of its members throughout the museum,” said Player, who is the Hall of Fame’s Global Ambassador. “I am honored and excited by their decision to shine the light on my story for this special exhibit and am eager to see the final product.”
“Gary Player: A Global Journey” will celebrate his storied life and career through a comprehensive collection of personal memorabilia, historic artifacts, images and video that have not been viewed by the public.
The Grand Slam area will showcase Player’s Grand Slam trophies, plus all of his significant major championship artifacts, including his nine major championship medals, the Black Knight Blade Putter used to win the Grand Slam and more than 100 other worldwide events, scorecards, crystal and commemorative gifts. Additionally, Player’s Green Jacket from the 1961 Masters Tournament will be showcased, as will his fiberglass-shaft driver used to win the 1965 U.S. Open.
A selection of other trophies, medals and awards from Player’s career will also be on display in The World Stage area of the exhibit, including his 13 South African Open medals, seven Australian Open medals and the scorecard from the 1974 Brazil Open when he shot a 59. Known as the World’s Most Traveled Athlete, the exhibit will incorporate stories of his successes on each continent in which he has won.
Since 1983, Player’s philanthropic endeavors have been channeled into the Gary Player Foundation, an organization that initially addressed the education crisis in his native South Africa. The Knight’s Shining Armor area of the exhibit will focus on the undertaking of his Foundation, with particular attention paid to the Blair Atholl Schools, and his work alongside the likes of Nelson Mandela, to better the human race—regardless of color.
Gary Player is a family man and a global business. The Legend of the Black Knight will tell the story of both sides of this great golfer away from the course. Supporting personal stories that give further insight into Player will be numerous artifacts that represent his interest in golf course design, fitness, fine wine, thoroughbred racing and more.
Stories from Player’s childhood will be told in the exhibit as well. Where It All Began will feature photos and items from his early years and his first ventures into the game of golf.
“Gary Player’s story has and continues to be fascinating to even the casual fan,” said Jack Peter, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of the Hall of Fame. “We are grateful for the support of Mr. Player and the Gary Player Group in our effort to provide a glimpse into the life of this global champion.”
“Gary Player: A Global Journey” will remain on display through the beginning of 2007.
[Photo of Garry Player autographing cap for spectator at Balgownie last summer, courtesy and copyright Cal Carson Golf Agency]
About the World Golf Hall of Fame
World Golf Hall of Fame, located in St. Augustine, Fla., is the ultimate destination for the celebration and recognition of golf’s greatest players and contributors and an inspiration to golfers and fans throughout the world.  A collaboration of 26 national and international golf organizations support the Hall of Fame, including the PGA TOUR, LPGA, USGA, PGA of America and The R&A. The museum houses interactive exhibits and historic and personal artifacts that tell the stories of its members and the game of golf. Adjacent is the World Golf Hall of Fame IMAX® Theater. For more information, visit  

Press Release 24th January 2006
Website warning for golf clubs

The National Golf Clubs' Advisory Association (NGCAA) is advising golf clubs to make sure their website complies with the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA).
If golf clubs fail to make reasonable adjustments to ensure disabled persons can use their website they could face a hefty compensation claim.
A recent study by the Disability Rights Commission examined 1000 websites and found that most of them (81%) showed a lack of support for disabled people.* 
Michael Shaw, national secretary of the NGCAA, says:
"All private clubs must make sure their website is DDA compliant.  They need to consider upgrading their sites to make them easier to use for the visually impaired, hard of hearing and possibly for those with reduced motor skills who could struggle when using a mouse. 
"When a golf club has a web site, it must be accessible to both club members and members of the public who are not club members, thus the web site must be accessible to disabled persons.  If it isn't, it may be deemed not to be user friendly.
"If a website makes it impossible or unreasonably difficult to access information and services it is not disability compliant, and a person could make a claim against the club.  The club could then be forced to pay compensation and be ordered by a court to change their site.  Clubs need to act now," he warns.
NGCAA members can call Michael Shaw on 01684 311 353 for further guidance on how to comply.
* See: for full report

Monday 23rd January 2006

Alex won by 2&1
We have received news that Alexandra Marshall ( Stirling University / Royal Cinque Ports) won the final of the 74th Jones Doherty Challenge Cup Championship First Flight against Laura Carson by 2&1. The First Flight was contested by those who were beaten in the first round of the Championship.
This completes our coverage of the event (see yesterday's report)

The SGU held a very successful AGM yesterday at Tulliallan.
Here is the Chairman's Report, Financial Statement and Fixture list for 2006



Press Release
World record attempt tees off

GOLFERS of all abilities are being asked to get out their clubs to take part in a world record attempt.
Preston professional golfer Glenn Turner, 46, is aiming to play the most 18 hole golf courses in a year whilst raising £1 million pounds for the Rhys Daniels Trust’s ‘home from home’ appeal which helps families of children with life threatening illnesses.
Glenn will also be raising money for 43 local hospices around the UK which are part of the Association of Children’s Hospices.
Glenn will be playing at courses throughout Great Britain, Ireland and Spain with a host of celebrities including Bobby Davro, Clayton Blackmore, Stan Boardman, Kenny Dalglish and Dennis Taylor. Attempting to play more than 500 rounds of golf in a year means Glenn needs plenty of golfers to join in his record bid. 
Speaking about the record attempt, Glenn said:
“To set the record I am playing a four ball game with a professional from each club I visit, a celebrity and the winner of an on-line auction, which is how I am going to raise money for charity.
“Achieving the record is going to be tough, but I’m dedicating the next year of my life to this challenge and am really looking forward to the experiences that will come with it.” 
If you don’t see yourself as the next Tiger Woods, you can still help raise money for the Rhys Daniels Trust. Glenn is raffling off his tour motor home and golf buggy as well as holding an on-line auction.
 For further information about the record attempt log on to Glenn’s website

Date for your diary
The North of Scotland Girls Championship will be hosted by Kirriemuir Golf Club on Sunday, August 20

Sunday 22nd January 2006

Scotland’s Catriona Matthew and Janice Moodie chased the pacemaking Swedes down the home straight to finish runners-up in the Women’s World Cup of Golf at Gary Player Country Club, Sun City, South Africa.
After four-ball play in the first round and foursomes in the second, it was individual stroke-play for the third and decisive round.
Catriona shot a fine round of three-under-par 69 – easily the best score of the day – and Janice matched the par of 72 to give the Scots a third-round total of 141 which enabled them to shoot up the leaderboard and finish only three shots behind the title-winning Swedes, Annika Sorenstam (70) and Lotte Neumann (77).
Sweden finished with a total of seven-under-par 281 and the Scots were the only other country to finish under par with four-under 284.
Wales were third on level par 288.
Catriona Matthew had birdies at the third, seventh, eighth and nine in a brilliant outward half of four-under 32. She dropped shots at the 10th and 13th but got one of them back with a birdie at the 14th.
Janice Moodie bogeyed the first, fifth and 13th but birdied the ninth, 14th and 18th in halves of 37 and 35.
Laura Davies had three 7s on her card of 79 – she had to birdie the last to break 80 – as England finished well down the field on 301. Their third-day combined total, with Kirsty Taylor scoring a 73, was 152.
281 Sweden 65 69 147 (A Sorenstam 70, L Neumann 77).
284 Scotland 70 73 141 (C Matthew 69, J Moodie 72).
288 Wales 70 70 148 (B Brewerton 73, B Morgan 75).
289 United States 68 75 146.
290 Korea 65 72 153.
291 Colombia 69 69 153.
292 Finland 69 69 154, South Africa 69 77 145.
294 Australia 72 77 145, Germany 70 72 152.
295 Italy.
296 Japan.
298 France.
299 Brazil, Taiwan.
301 England 71 78 152 (K Taylor 73, L Davies 79).
301 Canada, Spain.
305 Philippines.
306 New Zealand.

The curtain rings down on Florida’s 2006 Orange Blossom Tour with the week-long International Four-Ball tournament at Orangebrook Country Club, Hollywood near Fort Lauderdale.
There will be two stroke-play qualifying rounds to produce the eight pairs who will contest the match-play stages from Wednesday to Friday.
Last year, Ireland’s Marian Riordan from Tipperary and Mary Ann Plunkett, an American she met for the first time earlier on the Orange Blossom Tour, won the title.
Marian did not make the trip to Florida this year.
Sarah Carty from The Island Golf Club, Dublin did go over but she does not have a partner so far, according to the starting sheet for Monday’s first qualifying round.
There should have been three all-Stirling University partnerships but Clare-Marie Carlton (Fereneze) went down with a virus and had to stay in Scotland.
She was down to play with Kylie Walker in the four-ball foursomes. No new partner has been named yet for Kylie. Perhaps the organisers will pair up Sarah Carty with Kylie.
Emma Tipping (Sandiway) will team up with Alex Marshall (Royal Cinque Ports) while Olivia Briggs (Delamere Forest), who went so close to winning the Jones Doherty Challenge Cup at Coral Ridge Country Club on Saturday, will have Dawn Dewar (Monifieth) as a partner.
Welsh senior women’s amateur champion Vicki Thomas (Carmarthen) has gone home but Carol Semple Thompson (Pennsylvania), the US Curtis Cup captain who beat Vicki 3 and 2 in Saturday’s senior championship final of the Jones Doherty Challenge Cup, is in the field,
Carol’s partner is another legendary name from women’s amateur golf, Marlene Streit, from Canada and in her 70s.

Paula Marti, one of the leading players on the Ladies European Tour, has announced at the Women's World Cup of Golf in Sun City, South Africa, that she is pregnant.
The Spanish player, twice a winner on the LET and the 2002 Order of Merit champion, said she is expecting her first child in July.
Marti, whose 26th birthday is at the end of this month, is one of the more glamorous figures on the circuit.

Former Scottish amateur champion Barry Hume of Haggs Castle, Glasgow finished joint ninth in the Pakistan Open golf championship at Karachi Golf Club on Sunday.
Barry had rounds of 70, 72, 66 and 73 for a seven-under-par total of 281.
Lee Rhind from Uphall tied for 32nd place on one-under 287 with rounds of 70, 72, 72 and 73.
Londoner Chris Rodgers won the title with a 15-under-par total of 273 with scores of 69, 64, 68 and 72.
Joint second on 277 were two Indian players, Jeev Milka Singh and Amandee Johl.
Welshman Mark Mouland, well in contention over the first two rounds, slumped to a 78 in the final round for 288.
273 Chris Rodgers (Eng) 69 64 68 72.
277 Jeev Milka Sing (Ind) 68 69 71 69, Amandeep Johl (Ind) 68 67 73 69.
Other totals:
281 Barry Hume (Sco) 70 72 66 73 (tied 9th).
287 Lee Rhind (Sco) 70 72 72 73 (tied 32nd).

Alexandra Bodemann and Olivia Briggs (University of Stirling) after the prizegiving at Palm City, Florida.

Stirling University student Olivia Briggs lost a classic final to Alexandra Bodemann from Palm City, Florida in the 74th Jones Doherty Challenge Cup women’s amateur golf tournament at Coral Ridge Country Club on Saturday.
Olivia, 23, a member at Delamere Forest Golf Club, Cheshire, was beaten by a birdie at the 21st hole from her 17-year-old opponent who got as far as the semi-finals of this Orange Blossom Tour event 12 months ago.
Bodemann was four up with six holes to play but Briggs won four out of five holes from the 13th to be all square coming up the 18th.The 18th was halved in birdies with Olivia holed first from eight feet and Alexandra - "Allie" to her friends - following her in from six feet to avoid defeat and take the final into extra holes.
Briggs missed a 3ft par putt that would have given her the title at the 19th which was halved in bogeys.After another half at the 20th, Bodemann hit a seven iron to within seven feet of the hole. Briggs missed the green but pitched to a foot for a certain par.
Her American opponent then holed her birdie putt for victory to follow in the footsteps of such illustrious players as Patty Berg and Babe Zaharias as winners of the Doherty Cup, first contested in 1933.
"I was shaking coming up the 18th and shaking a huge amount at the 19th, 20th and 21st," said Olivia Briggs later.
There was further disappointment for British hopes when Welsh senior women’s amateur champion Vicki Thomas (Carmarthern) lost by 3 and 2 to this year’s United States Curtis Cup captain, Carol Semple Thompson from Pennsylvania, in the final of the senior championship.
Carol has won seven USGA titles in a long and distinguished career.Vicki, of course, was a Curtis Cup player, in her younger days when she was a multi-winner of the Welsh women’s amateur title.
We have received news that Alexandra Marshall ( Royal Cinque Ports) won the final of the Championship First Flight against Laura Carson. No more details such as to the score but we will get that result to you as soon as it becomes available from our Florida correspondent.
Alex is one of the squad of five Stirling University players – Clare-Marie Carlton (Fereneze) had to pull out of the trip when she went down with a virus – who are playing in the final two events of the Orange Blossom Tour.
The international four-ball foursomes tournament starts on Monday.
Olivia Briggs, winner of the British Universities Sports Association Order of Merit title last year, is captain of the Stirling University squad.

Carol Semple Thomson and Vicki Thomas after the Seniors prizegiving

Stirling University team with Carol Semple Thompson
L to R. Olivia Briggs, Emma Tipping, Carol Semple Thompson, Alex Marshall, Dawn Dewar and Kylie Walker.

Saturday 21st January 2006

Barry Hume, pictured right, from Glasgow will start the final round of the Pakistan Open at Karachi in a share of fourth place, although seven strokes behind leader Chris Rodgers from England.
Hume, a former Scottish amateur champion, had a fourth-round 66 (six under par) for a 54-hole tally of eight-under-par 208.
Barry, who had a costly double-bogey 6 in his first-round, has followed that up with scores of 72 and 66.
He had an eagle 3 at the 14th and birdies at the fifth, 10th, 11th, 12th and 15th.
From the 10th to the 15th holes in his third round, Hume as six under par.
He had one bogey – at the eighth.
Londoner Chris Rodgers has had rounds of 69, 64 and 68 to be three shots clear in the pole position at 15-under-par 201.
Lee Rhind from Uphall dropped back to joint 26th place with a level par 72 for two-under-par 214.
201 Chris Rodgers (Eng) 69 64 68.
204 Mark Mouland (Wal) 68 75 71, Mohamid Mur (Pak) 70 68 66.
208 Jeev Mikha Singh (Ind) 68 69 71, Amandeep Johl (Ind) 68 67 73, Ashor Kumar (Ind) 68 70 70, Iain Steel (Mal) 73 66 69, Barry Hume (Sco) 70 72 66.
Other total:
214 Lee Rhind (Sco) 70 72 72.

Sweden’s Annika Sorenstam and Lotte Neumann opened up a three-shot lead after the Day 2 foursomes play in the Women’s World Cup professional championship at Gary Player Country Club, Sun City, South Africa.
Annika and Lotte’s alternate-shot score of three-under-par 69 matched the best of a day when many players could not get any rhythm going in their foursomes play.
For example, Taiwan slumped from a better-ball 67 on Friday to a 77, a score also returned by South Africa, Italy, Brazil and Australia.
England’s Kirsty Taylor and Laura Davies had a sad 78 for 149.
New Zealand suffered the worst slump, plunging to an 82 after a first-day 69.
Even Scotland’s Catriona Matthew and Janice Moodie, well used to foursomes play in their amateur days, could do no better than a one-over-par 73 for 143.
The Scots are sharing sevent place with Spain and United States – nine shots behind Sweden with Korea in second place on 137.
Wales are the best placed of the UK countries with a pair of 70s for fifth place on four-under 140.
134 Sweden (A Sorenstam & L Neumann) 65 69.
137 Korea (M Lee & B B Song) 65 72.
138 Colombia 69 69, Finland 69 69.
140 Wales (B Brewerton & B Morgan) 70 70.
142 Germany 70 72.
143 Scotland (C Matthew & J Moodie) 70 73, Spain 69 74, United States 68 75.
144 Taiwan 67 77.
145 Canada 70 75.
146 France 72 74, South Africa 69 77.
147 Japan 73 74, Italy 73 74.
149 Brazil 72 77, Australia 72 77, England (K Taylor & L Davies 71 78).
151 New Zealand 69 82.
153 Philippines 71 82.

Two Stirling University students, Olivia Briggs and Alexandra Marshall, as well as Welsh senior women’s amateur champion Vicki Thomas won their way through to finals day in the Jones Doherty Challenge Cup amateur golf tournament at Coral Ridge Country Club, Florida.
Olivia, a member of Delamere Forest Golf Club, will play 17-year-old Alexandra Bodemann from Florida, beaten in the semi-finals last year, for the championship in this the penultimate event on the Orange Blossom Tour.
Olivia scored a 6 and 5 win in the semi-finals over Benedikie Grotvedt from Norway while Alexandra beat 12-year-old Kyle Roig from Florida, the youngest ever match-play qualifier in the 74-year history of the “Jones Doherty,” by 5 and 4.
Former Curtis Cup player Vicki Thomas (Carmarthen), pictured right, meets this year’s US Curtis Cup skipper, Carol Semple Thompson (Pennsylvania) in the final of the senior championship.
Both won their semi-finals by 5 and 4 margins. Vickie beat the No 1 qualifier, Taffy Brower from Florida while Carol, winner of seven USGA championships over the years, beat Ann Fulginiti from Florida.
Alexandra Marshall (Burghley Park) is through to the last stage of the championship first flight, contested by those who were beaten in the first round of the championship proper.
Alexandra plays Laura Carson from Illinois in the final after winning by 3 and 2 against Stacy Hilton (North Carolina).
Laura beat Madison Pressel (Florida), 14-year-old sister of LPGA rookie Morgan Pressel, at the 19th in the other semi-final.
Coral Ridge Country Club, Florida
Semi-finals – A Bodemann (Florida) bt K Roig (Florida) 5 and 4, O Briggs (Stirling Univ) bt B Grotvedt (Norway) 6 and 5.
Semi-finals – A Marshall (Stirling Univ) bt S Hilton (North Carolina) 3 and 2, L Carson (Illinois) bt Madison Pressel (Florida) at 19th.
V Thomas (Carmarthen) bt T Brower (Florida) 5 and 4, C Semple Thompson (Pennsylvania) bt A Fulginiti (Florida) 5 and 4.

Friday 20th January 2006

Scotland – represented by Catriona Matthew and Janice Moodie – were lying joint 10th in the field of 20 at the end of the first day’s play in the Women’s World Cup professional championship at Sun City, South Africa today.
The first-round format was better-ball and Catriona and Janice combined for a two-under-par 70, which left them trailing the joint leaders by five shots.
Sharing the pole position on seven-under-par 65 were Korea (Meena Lee and Bo Bae Song) and Sweden (Annika Sorenstam and Liselotte Neumann.
65 Korea (Meena Lee & Bo Bae Song), Sweden (Annika Sorenstam & Liselotte Neumann).
67 Taiwan.
68 United States (Paula Creamer & Natalie Gulbis).
69 New Zealand, Colombia, Finland, South Africa, Spain.
70 Germany, Canada, Scotland (Catriona Matthew & Janice Moodie), Wales (Becky Brewerton & Becky Morgan).
71 Philippines, England (Kirsty Taylor & Laura Davies).
72 Australia, Brazil, France.
73 Italy, Japan.

The Swedish Golf Federation would like to make Member Federations and Players aware that the 2007 edition of the European Ladies Senior Championship will be held earlier in the year than the 2006 event.
The Royal Drottningholms GC, pictured right, will host the 2007 event between the 24th and 27th of July, six weeks earlier than this year's event, hosted by the Waterloo club in Belgium during the first week of September.

Jim Farmer stands with a portrait of John Panton in the background

R&A Golf Club of St Andrews Press Release

The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews is pleased to announce that Jim Farmer has accepted the Club’s invitation to become its Honorary Professional following the retirement of John Panton after 17 years in the position.
"We are delighted that Jim Farmer has become the Club's Honorary Professional. Jim's reputation as a player, team captain, teacher and administrator is second to none and his lifelong experience of St Andrews will be invaluable. John Panton fulfilled the role with great distinction and we wish him well in his retirement," said Peter Dawson, Secretary of The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews.
Farmer follows a distinguished line of Honorary Professionals to The Royal and Ancient Golf Club, Andrew Kirkaldy, Willie Auchterlonie, his son Laurie Auchterlonie and more recently John Panton.
Panton, who will be 90 in October, turned professional in 1935 and was the club professional to Glenbervie Golf Club from 1946 until his retirement in 1984. He was appointed Honorary Professional to The Royal and Ancient Golf Club in September 1988 following the death of Laurie Auchterlonie in August 1987.
Among Panton’s many achievements in an outstanding playing career, he was a member of the Ryder Cup teams of 1951, 1953 and 1961 and captured the World Seniors’ title in 1967 when he defeated Sam Snead 3/2 in the final.
He also represented Scotland in the World Cup 12 times between 1955 and 1968 and won the Scottish Professional Championship on eight occasions.
Jim Farmer, like Panton, played most of his golf on the Scottish professional circuit after leaving the amateur ranks in 1971 following international honours in the Home Internationals.
He was born in St Andrews in November 1948 and developed a highly successful career, both as a player and a club professional at Drumpellier and Duddingston and since 1987 has managed his own business, Jim Farmer Golf, in Market Street, St Andrews.
Highlights of his playing career were his wins in the 1978 Northern Open, the 1983 Glenmuir Club Professional Championship and his sequence of finishing first in seven successive years between 1977 and 1983 on the money list of the Scottish professional circuit. He also gained representative honours in being selected for four PGA Cup matches against the U.S. and is particularly proud of the 1977 match in Palm Springs when the GB&I team became the first not to be beaten on U.S. soil. Last year he was captain of the side that defeated America at the K Club, Ireland. He is currently in his eighth year on the board of the PGA.
"I am absolutely delighted to have been appointed Honorary Professional to The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews," Farmer said on his appointment.
"When I look at the list of my predecessors, I realise what an honour it is to be considered for the position."

Press Release

The European Golf Association  is pleased to welcome Richard Heath as its first championship manager.
Richard, 34, is English-born, but has spent much of his life in Australia. He is an accomplished amateur player with over 15 years of representative golf and a myriad of amateur tournament wins. He is currently club champion at the Domaine Impérial Golf Club in Switzerland, where he holds a +2 handicap.
Richard is a formally qualified Sports Manager with a Master of Advanced Studies in Sports Administration and Technology from the International Academy of Sports Science and Technology in Switzerland. He has also attained a Bachelor of Science with Honours and a Bachelor of Applied Science and is a former university medallist and scholarship holder.
His work experience includes all aspects of the golfing environment, from range boy at 12 years, to greens staff, pro-shop staff and operations manager.
In the scientific world, Richard has consulted and contracted to a number of agencies, both public and private.
Between March and October 2005, Richard has been working on the EGA's pre-study into a European combined golf and tertiary education facility.
In his new role, he will be responsible for the efficient running of all EGA championships, the management of EGA representative teams and the EGA amateur rankings.

Debbie Watt, runner up in last years Ayrshire Ladies Championship, with her new son Findlay who was born on Monday 9th January, weighing in at 7lb & 4 oz
[Thanks to Catherine & Alastair Malcolm for photograph]

Stirling University student Olivia Briggs (Delamere Forest), pictured right, is through to the semi-finals of the Jones Doherty Challenge Cup women’s amateur tournament at Coral Ridge Country Club, Fort Lauderdale.
Olivia , 18th of the 32 qualifiers for the match-play stages, beat Erii Maeda from Florida by 4 and 3 in the quarter-finals.
Her semi-final opponent is Norway’s Benedikie Grotvedt.
The other semi-final is between 12-year-old Kyle Roig from Florida and Alexandra Bodeman, also from Florida.
Kyle is the youngest ever qualifier (eighth seed) for the match-play stages in the 74-year history of the tournament which is the third event on the annual Orange Blossom Tour in Florida.
Miss Roig knocked out the leading qualifier, Meghan Bolger, the 27-year-old University of Mississippi women’s golf coach, with a 3 and 2 win in the quarter-finals.
Another Stirling student, Dawn Dewar from Monifieth, lost in the final of the second-flight competition for those who failed to qualify for the championship match-play.
Dawn went down by two holes to home-town girl Claire Grysko from Fort Lauderdale.
A third Stirling student, Alexandra Marshall (Burghley Park) is through to the semi-finals of the first-flight competition for those beaten in the first round of the championship match-play.
Alexandra beat Natalie McNicholas (Oklahoma) by two holes in the semi-finals. She now plays Stacy Hilton (North Carolina) in the first-flight final.
The other semi-final is between Madison Pressel from Baton Rouge, Florida, 14-year-old sister of rookie pro Morgan Pressel, and Laura Carson (Illinois).
Welsh senior women’s amateur champion Vicki Thomas is through to the semi-finals of the over-50s championship. She beat Marlene Streit (Canada), winner of the British, United States and Canadian women’s open amateur titles in her heyday – she is now 70-something – by one hole in the quarter-finals.
Vicki, playing out of Carmarthen Golf Club, now meets leading qualifier Taffy Brower (Florida).
The other semi-final features Carol Semple Thompson (Pennsylvania), this year’s US Curtis Cup captain, and Ann Fulginiti (Florida).
Quarter-finals – K Roig (Florida) bt M Bolger (New York) 3 and 2, A Bodeman (Florida) bt D Lang (Florida) 5 and 4, O Briggs (Stirling Univ) bt E Maeda (Florida) 4 and 3, B Grotvedt (Norway) bt Connie Isler (Maryland) 6 and 5.
Quarter-finals – A Marshall (Stirling Univ) bt N McNicholas (Oklahoma) 2 holes, S Hilton (North Carolina) bt M Elmendorf (Virginia) 1 hole, M Pressel (Florida) bt K Villareal (Alabama) 3 and 1, L Carson (Illinois) bt L Edmunds (Canada) 2 and 1.
Final – C Grysko (Florida) bt D Dewar (Stirling Univ) 2 holes.
Quarter-finals – T Brower (Florida) bt A Hoffman (Virginia) 7 and 6, V Thomas (Carmarthen) bt M Streit (Canada) 1 hole, A Fulginiti (Florida) bt C Creekmore (Texas) 4 and 3, C Semple Thompson (Pennsylvania) beat B Schmid (Michigan) 4 and 3.

Carly Booth, the only Scot in the field, finished fifth in the girls’ section of the Faldo Series International Trophy tournament at Hong Kong Golf Club yesterday (THURSDAY).
Carly, 13-year-old from Comrie, Perthshire, had rounds of 80 and 77 for a total of 157. She finished six shots behind the girls’ champion 14-year-old Tsai Pei-ying (Taiwan) who had scores of 77 and 74 for 141.
England’s Kiran Matharu (Cookridge Hall) was joint runner-up with a pair of 76s for 152. Overnight leader Tiffany Avern-Taplin (South Africa) shared second place after scores of 73 and 79.
England’s John Parry (Harrogate) won the boys’ championship with a 70 and 69 for 139, one shot ahead of the title-holder Ben Evans (Rye).
Walker Cup teenager Oliver Fisher, the favourite from  West Essex, finished fourth on 142 (74-68) behind third-placed Rory McIlroy (Holywood, Northern Ireland).
A total of 48 talented youngsters from around the world competed on an invitation basis.
139 John Parry (Harrogate) 70 69.
140 Ben Evans (Rye) 71 69.
141 Rory McIlrory (Holywood, N Ireland) 71 70.
142 Oliver Fisher (West Essex) 74 68.
143 Neil Schietekat (S Africa) 72 71.
145 Pan Cheng Tsung (Taiwan) 70 75, Matthew Baldwin (Royal Birkdale) 69 76.
146 Ajeetesh Sandhu (India) 74 712.
148 Gaganjeet Bhullar (India) 74 74.
149 Himat Singh Rai (India) 71 78.
151 Tsai Pei-ying (Taiwan) 77 74.
152 Kiran Matharu (Cookridge Hall) 76 76, Tiffany Avern -Taplin (S Africa) 73 79.
154 Demi Mak (Hong Kong) 83 71.
157 Carly Booth (Comrie) 80 77.
159 Ginger Mak (Hong Kong) 81 78.
162 Dayanitha Kuneskara (Malaysia) 81 81, Melissa Reid (Chevin) 81 81, Lin Tzu Chi (Taiwan) 80 82.
170 Katharina Boehm (Germany) 86 84.

Pakistan Open

Scots Barry Hume from Glasgow  and Lee Rhind (Uphall) survived the halfway cut in the Pakistan Open at Karachi Golf Club yesterday (Friday). Hume and Rhind have matched each other’s efforts of 70 and 72 for two-under-par tallies of 142.
They are in joint 25th place, nine shots behind the joint leaders, Welshman Mark Mould (68-65) and Englishman Chris Rodgers (69-64) on 11-under-par 133.
A total of 72 players with three-over-par 36-hole totals of 147 or better survived the cut.
Jamie McLeary (Leven Golfing Society) missed out by one shot with 78 and 70 for 148.
Montrose’s Graeme Brown was well out of the picture, however, with 79 and 77 for 156.
PAKISTAN OPEN – Karachi Golf Club.
Leading qualifiers
Par 72
133 M Mouland (Wal) 68 65, C Rodgers (Eng) 69 64.
135 Amandeep Johl (Ind) 68 67.
Other qualifiers included:
142 B Hume (Sco) 70 72 L Rhind (Sco) 70 72.
Non-qualifiers included:
148 J McLeary (Sco) 78 70.
156 G Brown (Sco) 79 77.

Golf Foundation PRESS RELEASE
Bernard Gallacher brings Ryder Cup to Colchester school to celebrate Golf Foundation landmark
One of golf’s great names, Bernard Gallacher OBE, was guest of honour at Monkwick Infants School in Colchester on Wednesday (January 18) to celebrate the school being the 1,000th member of the Golf Foundation’s Junior Golf Passport scheme.
In a distinctly unique ‘show and tell’, the whole school of more than 100 children, aged five to eight, were thrilled when Bernard held up the gold Ryder Cup that he had won as Captain of the European Team back in 1995. This was one highlight of an afternoon that saw Bernard Gallacher playing Tri-Golf games with children, teachers and even the headmistress as part of a celebration of Monkwick Infants signing up for the Golf Foundation’s 1,000th Junior Golf Passport scheme.
The Junior Golf Passport is a structured golf learning programme for children delivered in schools and golf facilities all over Britain by professionals, teachers and volunteers. It gives young players the basics to enjoy the game and an understanding of the positive attributes promoted by playing golf, namely honesty, integrity and good sportsmanship. The children at Monkwick have signed up for the Passport after having been great fans of the Golf Foundation’s Tri-Golf game – a modified golf game using plastic clubs, soft balls and colourful targets, which apart from its golfing benefits, can be used in school work to add to mathematics and literacy learning.
A packed school hall cheered on young members of the school’s golf team as they took on Bernard in a Tri-Golf skills challenge, but the loudest cheers greeted some particularly sharp shooting at the targets by Gallacher, who is a Vice President and former President of the Golf Foundation.
After talking to the assembled children about how he had started in golf as a youngster and showing his first trophy, for the Scottish Amateur Championship, Bernard presented the school with a bag of new Tri-Golf equipment to herald the 1,000th Passport landmark. He urged the children to keep playing golf along with other sports and always to enjoy themselves in their sport.
“When I first started playing golf as a youngster I had to start with cut-down clubs of my father’s which were too heavy,” said Bernard. “The Golf Foundation’s Tri-Golf equipment is perfect for children as young as five to get them started and it’s great fun, which is how it should be at this age.
“I saw today at Monkwick a whole school in love with their golf and it was wonderful to see. The Golf Foundation is involved with this kind of activity in schools all over Britain now and this is hugely positive. All children should play golf along with their other sports and this work is an excellent investment to protect the future of the game.”
The Golf Foundation is now working with 3,000 primary schools around the British Isles. Its committed team of Regional Development Officers works with teachers, parents, club professionals and volunteers to bring Tri-Golf to an estimated 300,000 children per year. The Golf Foundation is working within the national partnerships in England, Scotland and Wales, and its development officers are helping community leaders to forge ever-closer links between schools and local golf clubs, with the express aim of making golf more accessible to young golfers.
Readers wanting to find out more about the Junior Golf Passport, Tri-Golf or any of the Golf Foundation’s initiatives can go to, or call 01920 876200.

Thursday 19th January 2006

Nick Faldo with juniors in Hong Kong

South African 17-year-old Tiffany Avern-Taplin shot a 73 to open up a three-shot lead at the halfway stage of the girls' championship in the Faldo Series Grand Final tournament in Hong Kong.
Tiffany's nearest rival was Kiran Matharu on 76.
There was no indication of the first-round score of Carly Booth, Scotland's only representative in the invited field.
In the boys' championship, hot favourite Oliver Fisher was five shots off the pace with an opening round of 74.
Matthew Baldwin from Royal Birkdale was the pace-setter with a one-under-par 69 which included an eagle, four birdies and a triple bogey 8 at the long sixth.
Matthew leads by one shot from John Parry and Cheung-Tsung (Taipei).
Ben Evans and Rory McIlroy both shot 71s.
Jack Hiluta was on the 74 mark alongside Oliver Fisher.

Olivia Briggs, captain of the Stirling University squad of female golfers competing in the last two events on the Orange Blossom women’s amateur tour in Florida, was the only one to reach the quarter-finals of the Jones Doherty Challenge Cup tournament at Coral Ridge Country Club, Fort Lauderdale.
Scotland international team member Kylie Walker (Buchanan Castle), sixth best among the 32 qualifiers for the match-play stages, lost by 6 and 5 to Connie Isler (Maryland), the 11th qualifier, in the round of the last 16.
Olivia Briggs (Delamere Forest) beat fellow Stirling student Emma Tipping (Sandiway) at the 19th in a thrilling tie to get through to the last eight who include 12-year-old Kyle Roig from Florida, the youngest ever player to reach the match-play stages of the tournament.
Olivia plays Eri Maeda (Florida) for a place in the semi-finals.
Another Stirling student, Dawn Dewar (Monifieth), reached the final of the second flight of the championship, for those eliminated in the first round.
Dawn beat Gina Larsen (Florida) by 2 and 1 in the semi-finals.
Welsh senior women’s amateur champion Vicki Thomas, a former Curtis Cup player from Carmarthen, reached the quarter-finals of the over-50s championship with a one-hole win over Diana Schwab (Ohio). Vicki plays Marlene Streit (Canada), a former British and United States women’s open amateur champion, for a place in the final.
Coral Ridge Country Club, Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Championship results included:
Second round
O Briggs (Stirling) bt E Tipping (Stirling) at 19th.
C Isler (Maryland) bt K Walker (Stirling) 6 and 5.
Second flight results included:
D Dewar (Stirling) bt G Larsen (Florida) 2 and 1.
Senior championship
V Thomas (Wales) bt D Schwab (Ohio) 1 hole.
M Streit (Canada) bt C Aydlett (North Carolina) 2 and 1.
C Semple Thompson (Pennsylvania) bt S Rampelberg (Florida) 5 and 4.

Wednesday 18th January 2006

The Ladies Golf Union will not hold future championships at men-only clubs in the British Isles, LGU chief executive Andy Salmon has told Golfweek magazine writer Alistair Tait..
The LGU has staged championships at all-male clubs in the past - the Curtis Cup at Muirfield in 1984 and Royal St. George's in 1988, and the British women’s open amateur championship at Royal Troon in 1984.
"We have modernised our approach because we have to recognize that it's the future we have to be concerned about," said Andy Salmon.
"We now have a policy that we won't take the Curtis Cup or the British Women's Open, or any of our championships, to a golf club that doesn't allow women members.
"All our events in the future will only be held at clubs that allow male and women members. Our future championships will not go to male-only golf clubs.
"We're not to trying to say to these clubs, 'Change, because we want you to change.' We're saying, 'We respect your rights to be male-only, but we are not going to bring any of our profile events to you until you change your rules.' It was just time to make a stand. Society is changing, and it was time to recognize that."
According to the LGU survey results released earlier this week, the number of female golfers in Great Britain and Ireland has fallen from 225,276 in 2001 to 215,437 in 2005.
The average age of women playing golf is between 55 and 64, with players over age 45 comprising 87 percent of all women golfers.
The survey also revealed that there is an average of only seven girls in each club in the British Isles compared with an average of 58 boys.
"The game needs imaginative, innovative, out-of-the-box ideas to create a friendly, family-orientated atmosphere," says Andy Salmon.
"We've got to preserve the great traditions of the game, the self-regulation, the etiquette, etc., but we could soften some of the dress codes, some of the regulatory aspects of the game we've had for so many years to make it a bit more relaxed and a bit more appealing to a younger generation."
Alistair Tait is a Golfweek senior writer. You can reach him by e-mail at

At the 112th annual general meeting of the Irish Ladies Golf Union, held at Westmanstown Sports Centre, Dublin, more than 160 clubs were represented with the number of attendees exceeding 400, well up on last year's figures.
All five motions were unanimously carried:
1 The adoption of a single affiliation fee.
2 The alignment of the Central Junior Council.
3 The amalgamation of the Senior & Junior Selection Committees.
4 The replacement of Standard Scratch Assesors by USGA Course Raters.
5 The adoption of minor amendments to the Constitution.
Patrickswell's Marion Collins replaced the outgoing Honorary Treasurer, Nora Murphy, on completion of her term.
Council members Rhona Brennan (Southern), Pat Farrell (Western), Pat Lowe (Northern), Maura Sweeney (Eastern) and Ann Popplewell (LGU delegate) all completed their three-year term and were replaced by Maire McMahon, Maura Joyce, Roma English, Nicky Robinson and Brigid McCaw respectively.
At the AA Insurance draw for all attendees, Catherine Murphy from Clane, Co. Kildare won a weekend for two at Dromoland Castle.
Membership of the Irish Ladies Golf Union has doubled over the past 10 years and with many of the Strategic Plan initiatives due for implementation, 2006 promises to be an exciting year for the 60,000 membership.
The inaugural AA Insurance National Golf Championships sees four singles and two foursomes inter-club competitions climaxing in a national final while the introduction of under-15 Interprovincial matches and an under-12 coaching panel focuses on development of the game at underage level.
This year’s annual general meeting was moved from University College Dublin, where it had been held for the past three years, to Westmanstown Sports Centre to cope with the additional numbers attending. Complimentary transport from the city’s train stations was well received with over 100 delegates availing of the service.

The Futures Tour – the No 2 women’s professional circuit in the United States – has found itself a name sponsor for the next three years at least.
Duramed Pharmaceuticals, a subsidiary of Barr Pharmaceuticals, who produce women’s healthcare products, is a bit of a mouthful to add to the name of a tour so it will go by the name of the Duramed Futures Tour.
Duramed will establish a programme to recognise players who receive exempt LPGA status each year – the top five money-winners at the end of each Futures Tour season - and will put its name on the tour's Player of the Year award.
"It's such a perfect partner for us," said Zayra Calderon, the Futures Tour’s president and chief executive.
"They have such a strong commitment to our mission and they believe in the value of our tour. I'm in seventh heaven."
Calderon would not put a figure on how much money Duramed paid for its title sponsorship, but said the partnership would allow tournament purses to grow at a steady rate and allocate more funds to marketing and promotions.

Stirling University student Kylie Walker (Buchanan Castle) had one of the biggest wins of the first round of the match-play stages of the Jones Doherty women’s amateur golf championship in Florida.
Kylie, who was the sixth of the 32 qualifiers, beat Monica Von Glahn from North Palm Beach, Florida by 6 and 5.
Two other Stirling students made it through to the last 16 in which they will play each other!
Emma Tipping (Sandiway), the No 31 qualifier, won by two holes against Alexandra Frazier from Haverford, Pennsylvania, and now plays Engish compatriot Olivia Briggs (Delamere Forest).
Olivia, who qualified in 18th place, won at the 19th against Madison Pressel from Baton Rouge, Florida, 14-year-old sister of LPGA rookie Morgan Pressel.
Madison was four down with six to play against the Stirling University squad captain but then won the 14th 15th and 17th with pars and squared the match by holing a 15ft uphill putt for a birdie at the 18th.
But, at the first extra hole, Olivia Briggs holed a 10ft putt for par which was good enough to win the tie when Madison missed from 4ft for a half.
The only Stirling University “casualty” was Alexandra Marshall (Burghley Park). Alexandra, the ninth seed, lost at the 19th to Julie Garner from Winter Park, Florida.
Julie, the 43-year-old Rollins University women's head coach and the 2005 Florida women's mid-amateur champion, now plays 12-year-old Florida girl Kyle Roig, the youngest player in the tournament's 74-year history to qualify for the match-play stages.
Kyle, the No. 8 qualifier, was one down after 16 holes of her first-round tie against Ashley Mooney, also from Florida, but squared the contest with a par at the 17th and then birdied the 18th to advance by a one-hole margin.
"I don't have a set strategy when I play someone older except that I don't give away any putts. I'm not getting any sympathy because I'm young. People just don't want to lose to a 12-year-old,"said Miss Roig.
Dawn Dewar from Monifieth, a fifth member of the Stirling University squad who are playing in the final two events of the Orange Blossom Tour, won her second flight tie by 2 and 1 against Mayura Skowronski from Frankfurt, Germany.
Ireland’s Sarah Carty from The Island Golf Club, Dublin, lost by 6 and 4 to the No 3 seed, Benedikie Grotvedt from Norway. Sarah was the 30th qualifier.
Welsh senior women’s amateur champion Vikki Thomas (Carmarthen), the 13th qualifier, reached the last 16 of the over-50s championship with a two-hole win over Cynthia Curry from Charlotte, North Carolina, the 20th qualifier.
Coral Ridge Country Club, Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Championship flight - First round results included:
J Garner (US) bt A Marshall (Stirling) at 19th.
E Tipping (Stirling) bt A Frazier (US) 2 holes.
O Briggs (Stirling) bt Madison Pressel (US) at 19th.
K Walker (Stirling) bt M Von Glahn (US) 6 and 5.
B Grotvedt (Norway) bt S Carty (Ireland) 6 and 4.
Second flight results included:
D Dewar (Stirling) bt M Skowronski (Germany) 2 and 1.
Senior championship
First round results included
V Thomas (Wales) bt C Curry (US) 2 holes.
C Semple Thompson (US) bt M Likens (US) 6 and 5.

Report from our roving reporter
Jean Campbell, Webmaster of Dunbartonshire and Argyll County, is out in Florida and sent in this report...
"Hi - just got back from a very enjoyable couple of days at Coral Ridge Country Club where the 74th Ione D. Jones/Doherty Women's Amateur and 20th Senior Women's Amateur Championships took place. Coral Ridge is a fairly flat parkland course with very slick undulating greens - the yardage for the Senior's being 5815 and for the Jones/Doherty 6245.
I was at the course for 8 am when Kylie Walker was teeing off - her fellow players were Diane Lang +3 who is the USA Senior champion and Meghan Bolger +2.3 and Kylie +1.2. Meghan was top qualifier with 74 - Kylie 77 (with a few three putts) and Diane 82.
Stirling University have five girls at the event - poor Clair-Marie Carlton has a virus and was unable to travel. A reception buffet was held for all the players and guests (John and I were invited by Raleigh Gowrie) it is without doubt one of the finest I have ever seen in my life!! It included Grilled Chicken, Jumbo Shrimp, Mussels, Atipasto, Seared Yellowfin Tuna, Prime Rib, Blackened Mahi Mahi, Turkey, Chicken Masala, Pasta - then a selection of sweets to die for!!!
The players were asked to write questions for the panel of speakers(after the meal) - Alice Dye, the legendary Joanne Carner, Carol Semple Thompson - Curtis Cup player and also captain of the last Curtis Cup, Marlene Streit, Jane Booth and Vicki Thomas - Curtis Cup player. The panel were in good form and proved to be very entertaining and also informative.
The members of Coral Ridge Country Club certainly made us most welcome and I would certainly return there in the future to watch such excellent golf.
This morning it was down to business and Kylie played against Monica VonGlahn of Palm Beach - Kylie was two up after nine and won ten, eleven, twelve and thirteen to win six and five. The conditions for playing today were demanding because of the stiff, testing wind. Kylie was one over when the game finished."
[Jean, Thanks very much for your informative report

Pam Chugg assumed the office of Chairman of the Ladies’ Golf Union at the Annual General Meeting in Cardiff today. She will serve for a period of 12 months.
Mrs Chugg, 50, takes over the position after a lifetime in golf at the highest level where she played for Wales, her home country, between the ages of 17 and 40. During that period she had a five-year spell as a professional and was one of the founding members of the WPGA.
She was captain of the Welsh Ladies’ for three years starting in 2000 and was elected to the LGU Executive Council shortly after her captaincy ended. Her spell in the LGU included being Chairman of the Training Committee for two years.
Mrs Chugg views her year in office as an opportunity to continue the work of her predecessors in taking the LGU forward. In addition, following the publication of the review into ladies’ golf – ‘Research 2005’ – she is keen to ensure that the LGU and the Home Unions embrace the findings highlighted in the project document.
"I am determined to continue to put into action, our aims to take ladies’ golf forward and in particular, to bring more young people into the game. I am aware that there is a problem getting girls into golf and keeping them there. However we wish to bring into the game not only juniors but also young women in their twenties and thirties and in order to do that, we must encourage clubs to adopt a family friendly and more relaxed attitude. Now, with hard facts underlining what we had always suspected, we can assist governing bodies, clubs and individuals in ensuring that ladies golf has an assured future."
Mrs Chugg still plays to a handicap of 4 at Whitchurch, her home club and at Royal Porthcawl where she is also a member.
She lives at Cowbridge with her husband Mike, also a member at Porthcawl.

Tuesday 17th January 2006

Mrs Catherine Benn MBE, chairman of ELGA in 1976, died on Sunday at Aldeburgh in Suffolk. She was 95.
Mrs Benn, a founder member of the Women’s Voluntary Service, took up golf with great gusto after World War II. She learned the game in her home county of Surrey from the Ryder Cup player Bill Cox and became a single-figure handicapper.
She was closely involved with ladies’ golf in Surrey and was a vice-president and honorary life member of the county golf association.
During her golfing career Mrs Benn was ladies’ captain at three clubs: Tandridge in Surrey, Royal Wimbledon in London and Aldeburgh, where she was also an honorary life member.
She had huge enthusiasm for golf and used to "bribe" her son, James, and daughter, Elizabeth, to listen to her recounting a round, shot by shot.
The fee was a silver threepenny bit for each hole. Her children complained they had to run to keep up with her on the golf course as, with her long legs, she strode out at a rapid pace.
She boasted of winning a medal at Royal Wimbledon in 2¼ hours - later admitting it was always much quicker playing with a caddie than when pulling a trolley!
Mrs Benn, who lived in Aldeburgh for the last 30 years, gave up golf when she was about 80 but continued to take a keen interest in the ladies’ game until her death. She leaves her daughter and son, five grandchildren and four great grandchildren.
The funeral will take place at St Peter and St Paul, Aldeburgh, on Monday, January 23 at 12 noon.

Scottish international team member Kylie Walker qualified in sixth place for the match-play stages of the Jones Doherty women’s amateur championship at Coral Ridge Country Club, Fort Lauderdale.
Kylie, a member of Buchanan Castle Golf Club, is one of the Stirling University squad of female golf scholarship students who are playing in the final two events of the annual Orange Blossom Tour in Florida.
Miss Walker had a score of three-over-par 77 – three shots more than the No 1 qualifier, Meghan Bolger, the head women’s golf coach at the University of Mississippi.
Alexandra Marshall (Burghley Park) also had a 77 but a card countback placed her ninth of the 32 qualifiers.
Olivia Briggs (Delamere Forest) had an 80 to be 18th qualifier while Emma Tipping (Sandiway) had an 87 – the limit mark – to squeeze through in 31st place.
Dawn Dewar (Monifieth) missed out on qualification for the championship match-play flight with a score of 90. She is No 3 seed in the second flight.
The sixth Stirling University player, Clare-Marie Carlton (Fereneze) did not play in the qualifying round.
Sarah Carty, a 19-year-old member at The Island Golf Club, Dublin, qualified in 30th place with an 86. Sarah, who has a handicap of six, is playing in all the Orange Blossom events in an attempt to lower her handicap during a year out to play golf.
A 12-year-old Florida girl, Kyle Roig, became the youngest player in the history of the Jones Doherty championship to qualify for the match-play stages.
Despite driving her first tee shot out of bounds and starting off with a triple bogey, Kyle finished with a 77, thanks to five birdies.
Welsh senior women’s amateur champion and former Curtis Cup player Vicki Thomas (Carmarthen) was the 13th qualifier for the senior match-play championship stages. She had a 79
Coral Ridge Country Club, Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Leading qualifiers for match-play stages
(Par 74)
74 Meghan Bolger (New York).
75 Alexandra Frazier (Pennsylvania), Benedikie Grotvedt (Norway), Stefanie Kenoyer (Florida).
Other qualifiers included:
77 Kylie Walker (Stirling Univ), Alexandra Marshall (Stirling Univ).
80 Olivia Briggs (Stirling Univ).
86 Sarah Carty (Ireland).
87 Emma Tipping (Stirling Univ).
Senior championship qualifiers
72 Taffy Brower (Florida).
73 Carolyn Creekmore (Texas).
75 Carol Semple Thompson (Pennsylvania).
Other qualifier:
79 Vicki Thomas (Wales).

Monday 16th January 2006

LGU Press Release

Just one golf club in six (17.2%) has a waiting list for ladies’ membership, and on average it is just six names long, according to the biggest study of ladies’ golf ever undertaken in Great Britain and Ireland (GB&I).
Commissioned by the Ladies Golf Union (LGU) and carried out by Comperio Research the study offers a comprehensive profile of lady golfers and their views on golf.
A downward trend in the number of lady golfers who are also golf club members, underpins the research project in which 1200 lady golfers and 369 golf club secretaries took part.
Commenting on the study findings LGU Chief Executive Andy Salmon said:
"We have a wealth of new information which in many cases confirms what has long been believed. Clearly, the ladies’ game has a number of issues which need to be addressed for the long-term good of the game. We have shared and discussed these findings with the ladies’ and men’s unions in each of England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales and now look forward to seeing how they and their respective partnerships (where relevant) utilise the data to take the game and specifically, ladies’ golf forward."
The average golf club in GB&I has 103 lady members, each paying an annual membership fee of £460 / €678 and a joining fee of £485 / €715, although this figure varies significantly between countries. More than two-thirds of clubs (70.6%) were found to have vacancies for lady members, with an average of 26 places available. Clubs were found on average to have 460 men, 107 ladies, 58 boys and only 7 girls.
The average lady golfer in GB&I is aged between 55-64 years with a handicap of 25, plays 2-3 times a week and golf is her main pastime. She is married with children and has played for 17 years. Nearly 9 out of 10 lady golfers have another member of their household who plays golf.
Questioned on barriers to more women playing golf the top responses from both lady golfers and golf club secretaries were: lack of time 53.9%, lack of TV coverage for ladies’ golf 42.2%, clubs too male dominated 41.6% and too expensive 40.5%. Clubs seen as unfriendly polled 28.9%, lack of family atmosphere 24.9% and dress code 16.1%.
Although access to membership is not a barrier, with 96.5% of the golf clubs surveyed having equal admission to membership for men and women members, researchers found strong support for the view that government should legislate to make discrimination in clubs on the basis of gender illegal, a situation that already exists in Ireland. Three quarters of UK lady golfers (73.5%) and UK golf club secretaries (75.2%) were found to support legislation.
Additionally two thirds (66.1%) of lady golfers interviewed were of the opinion that men and women only clubs damage the image of the game but views were less clear cut on the future for men or women only club membership with less than half (46.7%) of those polled viewing them as unacceptable. Over a third (36.9%) supported the right to choose membership of a men only or women only golf club and 16.4% held no strong opinions.
The move to the CONGU Unified Handicapping System for men and women that came into effect on 1 February 2004 is found to be good for the game, supported by 73.6% of lady golfers and 90.2% of golf club secretaries.
Women playing in The Open Championship is also given a positive approval rating with 55% of lady golfers in favour but with most (80.2%) agreeing that qualification must be on equal terms with men.

SGU Press Release
Early Season Competition For Scots Amateur Golfers

Three of Scotland’s leading amateur golfers will head for Australia later this month for their first taste of tournament play in the 2006 season. At the same time, six others will represent Scotland in a pre-season ‘friendly’ against the French.
Richie Ramsay (Royal Aberdeen), Scott Jamieson (Cathkin Braes) and Craig Watson from East Renfrewshire will compete in the 72-hole Lake Macquarie International Championship at Belmont Golf Club near Sydney from 26-29 January.
Ramsay and Jamieson will then go on to play in the New South Wales Medal and Amateur Championship in early February (4th–12th), which is also a 72-hole stroke play event, with the leading 32 players advancing to match play stages.
The French challenge has been scheduled to end a Scottish Golf Union (SGU) squad training week (22-29 Jan) at Montpellier Massane in France. The Scots’ team is George Murray (Earlsferry Thistle), Stuart Wilson (Forfar), Lloyd Saltman (Craigielaw), Scott Henry (Cardross), Paul O’Hara (Colville Park) and Glenn Campbell (Blairgowrie).
SGU chief executive, Hamish Grey commented, “Gaining experience in events like these is a key part of a comprehensive pre-season programme designed to best prepare our players for a hectic season of domestic and international competition.
“Australia, in particular, has become a popular destination for top Scottish players at this time of year and last year Eric Ramsay from Carnoustie headed ‘down under’ and came home as Australian Amateur Champion.”
The only Scot to win the Lake Macquarie International Championship is Colin Dalgleish, who took the title in 1983.

LET receives makeover
(Monday 16 January 2006) -- The Ladies European Tour today unveiled its new website and logo. The exciting changes have been made to modernise the tour's profile and bring it in line with its talented, progressive and vibrant golf professionals, as part of the re-branding of the company.
The strong but feminine branding will reenergise the LET and help to raise its global profile.
“The new website is aimed at communicating the achievements of our players and providing a showcase for their great performances and personalities,” said Alexandra Armas, executive director of the LET.
“Our Tour features some of the world’s leading golfers who are bright, athletic, multi dimensional 21st century women. The website will highlight the wealth of talent and modern attitudes that exist on the Tour.” 
The new image is the result of a year long study to identify the LET’s brand assets and core values which are at the heart of the new brand platform, in keeping with Armas’ future vision. She aims to align the LET’s corporate image with the reality of life on an increasingly cosmopolitan and multi-cultural golf Tour.
“With the new communication platform, we hope to challenge people’s perceptions of women’s golf in Europe. Women’s professional golf is gaining in global popularity and we want to reflect that we are a truly international Tour with highly engaging and dynamic players,” she added. “With more than 30 nationalities represented there is tremendous potential for growth in European golf and we look forward to embracing that over the coming years.”
The Tour’s new website and its television highlights programme will focus on the Tour players’ outstanding achievements. They will feature players from a range of different countries and backgrounds including established names such as England’s Laura Davies, who recorded the lowest LET scoring average in 2005, as well as up and coming players with enormous potential.
These include Spaniard Carmen Alonso Fuentes, a 21-year-old who was the Tour’s longest driver in 2005 with an average distance of 287.92 yards, as well as Minea Blomqvist from Finland, who, at 19, was the first player to shoot 62 in a major championship.
Denmark’s Iben Tinning, the European number one who was three times a winner in 2005 and voted Players’ Player of the Year, will feature along with Sweden’s Cecilia Ekelundh, the first ever winner of the Volvo Cross Country Challenge and the Portuguese Open Champion.
Kirsty Taylor from England, who carded a Tour record 11 under par 61 en route to her maiden victory, will compete for her country in the Women’s World Cup of Golf in South Africa, as will the undisputed queen of women’s golf Annika Sörenstam, eight times World number one with 79 worldwide victories to her name and The Solheim Cup’s leading points’ scorer.
These are some examples of the achievements that the LET will be celebrating through the reinvigorated The new logo and branding will also be visible on all LET TV programming, PR and tournament promotions.

Marie Curie Cancer Care's Queen Mother's Cup 2006- Play Penina for just £4.
Don't miss your chance to play the championship course at Le Meridien Penina for just £4, while raising money for Marie Curie Cancer Care.
Now in its12th year, Marie Curie Cancer Care's Queen Mother's Cup (QMC) golf tournament attracts golfers and golf clubs nationwide and this year even more club winners will have the chance to compete for free in the Grand Final at the world-famous Le Meridien Penina Golf Club, in the Algarve. Not to mention the opportunity to take part in the regional finals held at some of the most prestigious golf clubs around the UK.
Supported by Ryder Cup hero Colin Montgomerie and Solheim Cup star Laura Davies, the QMC is open to all clubs and players of all abilities.
Ms Davies, said: "If, like me, you enjoy nothing more than playing golf on the sun drenched fairways of Europe, then sign up for the Queen Mother's Cup golf tournament in aid of Marie Curie Cancer Care. About a quarter of all UK cancer patients die at home and the demand for Marie Curie Cancer Care's services has never been greater. So please sign up and help make a real difference to the lives of cancer patients and their families."
Organising a club competition is easy. All players pay £4 to enter the tournament and all clubs can host their own qualifying competitions either in tandem with their monthly medal or as a stand alone medal or Stableford event, with all competitions being played between January 1st and July 13th. The top golfers will then be invited to play at one of the 10 regional finals.
From there the top 10 men and top 10 female players will fly to Portugal for the all expenses paid Grand Final. 
The tournament is open to all men with a minimum handicap of 28 and women with a minimum handicap of 36, however because the grand final takes place overseas the only other restriction is that the winner must be at least 18 years old. The club qualifier must be played no later than July 13th 2006.
For more information and to enter your club please call 01883 832 665 or go to or email

Sunday 15th January 2006

The South Atlantic Ladies Amateur golf championship is not high on the Florida tourist business popularity poll. Last year, the tournament at Oceanside Country Club at Ormond Beach was reduced to three rounds when the third day’s play was washed out.
And the final round of this year’s 80th championship was played in a howling wind gusting up to 40mph.
In a field made up of low-handicap players, 47 scored in the 90s over the par-72 course on the last day and another six returns were in the 100s.
Only three players broke 80 – the winner, Virginia Grimes from Mississippi, Stacy Lewis (Texas), the previous week’s runaway winner of the Harder Hall Invitational, both of whom shot 77, and Alex Bodermann (Florida), with a 78.
Although now 41, Mrs Grimes’ gritty victory has boosted her chances of making a third appearance – she lost only one tie in six over the 1998 and 2000 matches - for the United States in this summer’s Curtis Cup contest  against Great Britain & Ireland at Bandon Dunes, Oregon.
Carol Semple Thompson, skipper of the American team, finished 19 strokes behind Virginia in the “Sally” and knows how well she played, particularly in the awful conditions on Saturday.
Mrs Grimes, third last year at Oceanside Country Club, won the South Atlantic Ladies Amateur title in 1998. She also includes a US women’s mid-amateur winner’s medal from that year among her souvenirs from a long career which has been plagued by injuries and operations which ended a career as a pro before it had begun in the early 1990s.
Virginia held the college set at bay over the gale-swept last round by pitching and putting like a woman inspired. One of her rivals said, in awe, “She was getting up and down from everywhere!”
Even so, Mrs Grimes was only three shots ahead of first-round leader Ashley Knoll, 20-year-old Texas A&M student and rated the most improved female  player of the first half of the 2005-2006 US college golf season, with seven holes to play.
Then Ashley’s drive at the 12th, pushed right, was carried by the wind on to the roof of a house. That cost her a triple bogey and ended her hopes of a “Sally” victory to place beside the Lady Tar Heels Invitational she won by eight shots a few months ago.
Virginia finished with rounds of 69, 72, 75 and 77 for five-over-par 293 – five shots clear of Ashley Knoll who scored 67, 77, 73 and 81 for 298.
Stacy Lewis (75-72-75-77) and Tiffany Chudy (72-73-72-82) tied for third place on 299.
Welsh senior women’s champion Vicki Thomas from Carmarthen finished a creditable joint 20th on 320 with rounds of 85, 74, 80 and 81 while 19-year-old six-handicapper Sarah Carty from The Island Golf Club, Dublin scored 94, 97, 83 and 97 for 371.
The Stirling University squad will join the Orange Blossom Tour for the third event of the four this coming week – the Jones/Doherty match-play tournament at Coral Ridge Country Club, staying on to play in the internatonal four-ball event at Orangebrook Country Club the following week.
Let’s hope the Florida Sun, which has been hibernating lately, shines for Kylie Walker, Dawn Dewar, Clare-Marie Carlton, Alex Marshall, Olivia Briggs and Emma Tipping.
Oceanside Country Club, Ormond Beach, Florida.
Par 72
293 Virginia Grimes (Mississippi) 69 72 75 77.
298 Ashley Knoll (Texas) 67 77 73 81.
299 Tiffany Chudy (Florida) 72 73 72 82, Stacy Lewis (Texas) 75 72 75 77.
301 Candace Schepperle (Alabama) 75 75 70 81.
304 Song-Hee Kim (South Carolina) 72 72 76 84.
306 Eileen Vargas (Columbia) 73 74 76 83, Alexandra Bodermann (Florida) 75 78 75 78.
308 Jean Reynolds (Georgia) 76 73 77 82.
309 Tiffany Prats (Florida) 78 74 75 82.
310 In-Kyung Kim (South Carolina) 76 77 77 80.
312 Carol Semple Thompson (Pennsylvania) 76 75 75 86,Tonya Choate (Missouri)  82 71 77 82.
Other totals:
320 Vicki Thomas (Wales) 85 74 80 81.
364 Mayura Skowronski (Germany) 86 88 91 99.
371 Sarah Carty (Ireland) 94 97 83 97.

Saturday 14th January 2006

Barry Hume (Haggs Castle), pictured right, the 2001 Scottish amateur champion, was the only home-based Scot to claim one of the 46 Asian Tour players’ cards which were awarded to those who finished with aggregates of four-under-par 284 or better in the Final Qualifying School at Palm Resort Golf & Country Club, Malaysia on Saturday.
Barry made it on the maximum mark with scores of 71, 70, 69 and 74.
Top Scot was Dubai-based Ross Bain who lost a play-off for the No 1 spot to Englishman Chris Rodgers after they both finished on 14-under-par 274.
Rodgers parred the long 18th hole on the Cempaka course in the extra-time action while Bain, bunkered, took five shots to reach the putting surface.
Malaysia-based John Wither, a former Tartan Tour player, was alongside Barry Hume on the 284 mark.
There was hard luck for Jamie McLeary (Leven Golfing Society. His three-under 285 total put him in joint 47th place, failing by one shot to get on to the upcoming Asian Tour.
Jamie had rounds of 73, 70, 68 and 74.
Graeme Brown (Royal Montrose) failed by two with a total of 286, made up of 69, 72, 72 and 73.
Lee Rhind (Uphall) missed out by three shots with 72, 72, 74 and 69 for 287 and joint 69th place.
Dubai-based Simon Dunn finished on 289 with 73, 70, 73 and 73.
Eric Ramsay (Carnoustie) missed the halfway cut.
274 Chris Rodgers (Eng) 72 69 64 70, Ross Bain (Sco) 67 69 70 68 (Rodgers beat Bain at the first extra hole in a play-off for the No 1 qualifier spot).
275 Lee Sung-Man (Kor) 68 64 70 73.
277 Ahmad Dan Bateman (Can) 73 71 69 70 68, Iain Steel (Malaysia) 71 69 68 69.
Other Scots who gained Asian Tour cards:
284 John Wither 69 72 71 72, Barry Hume 71 70 69 74
+A total of 46 players with aggregates of 284 or better gained Asian Tour cards.
Scots who failed:
285 Jamie McLeary 73 70 68 74 (jt 47th).
286 Graeme Brown 69 72 72 73 (jt 55th).
287 Lee Rhind 72 72 74 69 (jt 69th).
289 Simon Dunn 73 70 73 73 (jt 79th).

Carly Booth, the 13-year-old Perthshire golfing prodigy, pictured below right, is the only Scot in the squad of 10 teenagers from Great Britain & Ireland invited to participate in next week's Nick Faldo International Series Trophy tournament in Hong Kong.
It will be the second year Carly has made the trip to Hong Kong.
The tournament is over 36 holes, next Wednesday and Thursday.The winners will play against Nick Faldo in a "champions' shoot-out" on the Friday.
Apart from the chance to meet and compete with their international contemporates, the lucky invitees will also attend off-course activities including seminars with Nick Faldo plus fitness and rules workshops.
Nick has broadened the field this year to include competitors from India, Hong Kong, Chinese Taipei, Singapore, Malaysia, Germany, South Africa, the Philippines and the United Arab Emirates.
With the help of the 48 competitors, Nick Faldo will provide opportunities for young children in Hong Kong and China to take part in coaching clinics and watch the players in action.
"In my mind, the Faldo Series is about giving talented young golfers the opportunity to experience a taste of what life is like as a professional," said Nick.
The full list of GB&I players to make the trip to Hong Kong is:
Carly Booth (Comrie).
Matthew Baldwin (Royal Birkdale)
Ben Evans (Rye)
Oliver Fisher (West Essex)
Jack Hiluta (Chelmsford)
John Parry (Harrogate)
Eddie Pepperell (Frilford Heath)
Kiran Matharu (Cookridge Hall)
Melissa Reid (Chevin)
Rory McIlroy (Holywood).

Welsh senior women’s amateur champion Vicki Thomas slipped back in the third round round of the South Atlantic Ladies amateur golf championship but 19-year-old Sarah Carty from Dublin had her second best score so far after seven rounds on the Orange Blossom Tour in Florida.
Vicki, a former Curtis Cup player and many times Welsh women’s champion, has had scores of 85, 74 and 80 in the tournament better known as the “Sally,” over the Oceanside Country Club course at Ormond Beach and her 54-hole tally of 239 leaves the Carmarthen Golf Club member sharing 28th place with one round to go.
Sarah, a member of the Island Golf Club, Dublin and taking a year out to improve her golf handicap of six, got her act together on Day 3 to return an 83 after disappointing opening rounds of 94 and 97. Her only better score so far on the Orange Blossom Tour this month was an 81 in the second round of last week’s Harder Hall Invitational.
Former US Curtis Cup player and the 1998 American women’s mid-amateur champion, Virginia Grimes, pictured right, 41, from Montgomery, Alabama, maintained her overnight lead with a 75 to add to 69 and 72 in the first and second rounds.
But the one-time women’s golf coach at the University of Alabama has seen her lead shrink to only one shot from first-round leader Ashley Knoll (University of Texas A&M) and Tiffany Chudy from Miramir, Florida.
Virginia is on level par 216. Ashley (67-77-73) and Tiffany (72-73-72) are on 217.
Stacy Lewis, the 20-year-old University of Arkansas student who won the opening event on the Orange Blossom Tour – the Harder Hall Invitational by nine shots, still has an outside chance of a notable double. She has scored 72, 72 and 75 for 222 and is six shots off the pace in sixth place.
ORANGE BLOSSOM TOUR – South Atlantic Ladies amateur championship
Oceanside Country Club, Ormond Beach.
Leading third-round totals
Par 72
216 Virginia Grimes (Missouri) 69 72 75.
217 Ashley Knoll (Texas) 67 77 73, Tiffany Chudy (Florida) 72 73 72.
220 Song-Hee Kim (South Carolina) 72 72 76, Candace Schepperle (Alabama) 75 75 70.
222 Stacy Lewis (Texas) 75 72 75.
233 Eileen Vargas (Columbia) 73 74 76.
224 Rebecca Kuhn (Florida) 73 73 78.
226 Ashley Grieg (Maryland) 75 74 77, Jean Reynolds (Georgia) 76 73 77, Carol Semple Thompson (Pennsylvania) 76 75 75.
Other scores:
239 Vicki Thomas (Wales) 85 74 80.
274 Sara Carty (Ireland) 94 97 83.

Friday 13th January 2006

Of the seven Scots in the field, only Eric Ramsay from Carnoustie, pictured right, ast year’s Australian open amateur champion, was eliminated at the halfway stage of the Asian Tour Qualifying School Final Stage at the Palm Resort Golf & Country Club, Johor in Malaysia on Friday.
The 72-hole tournament is running well behind schedule and again a majority of the players were unable to finish their third rounds because of fading light.
Ramsay had rounds of 74 and 75 for 149 to miss the cut by a big margin.
A total of 109 players survived with 36-hole totals of level par 144 or better.
Dubai-based Ross Bain did it with ease on eight-under 136.
Graeme Brown from Montrose, Barry Hume of Haggs Castle and Malaysia-based John Winter all got through on the three-under 141 mark.
Jamie McLeary (Leven Golfing Society) and Dubai-based Simon Dunn qualified on 143 while Lee Rhind from Uphall made it with not a shot to spare on 144.
Saturday will be a hectic and nerve-jangling day for a lot of players. Not only do they have to complete their third rounds with early-morning starts but they have to go out again for a further 18 holes that will decide if they finish among the leading 40 who will gain playing rights for the Asian Tour.
131 Brad Kennedy (Aus) 62 69.
132 Lee Sung-man (Kor) 68 64.
136 Jason King (Aus) 66 70, Ross Bain (Sco) 67 69, Garth Mulloy (SA) 68 68.
Other Scotts qualifiers for the final two rounds included:
142 Graeme Brown 69 72, Barry Hume 71 70, John Wither 69 72 (jt 35th).
143 Jamie McLeary 73 70, Simon Dunn 73 70 (68th equal).
144 Lee Rhind 72 72 (92nd equal)
+A total of 109 players survived the cut with 36-hole totals of 144 or better.
 Non-qualifiers included
149 Eric Ramsay (Sco) 74 75. 

Former US Curtis Cup player and past American women’s mid-amateur champion Virginia Grimes from Meridian, Mississippi battled her way through tough, windy conditions to take a three-stroke lead at the halfway stage of the South Atlantic Ladies Amateur championship at Oceanside Country Club, Ormond Beach in Florida.
Virginia has had rounds of 69 and 71 for a three-under-par tally of 141 – three ahead of the first-round leader Ashley Knoll, the Texas A&M University player from Woodlands, Texas, and Song-Hee Kim (Hilton Head, South Carolina).
Ashley, the sixth-ranked female college player in the States, slumped from an opening 67 to a 77 for 144. Song-Kee Kim has had a pair of 72s, the second one obviously more meritorious than the first, given the conditions were several shots more difficult.
Stacy Lewis, the University of Arkansas player who ran away with the Harder Hall Invitational honours last week, took closer order with a 72 to be sharing sixth place on 147.
Only one player in the field of 98 broke par and that was 19-year-old Tonya Choate from Mount Vernon, Missouri. Tonya had a 71 after her first-day 82.
Given the background of the adverse weather, a 74 by Welsh senior women’s amateur champion Vicki Thomas was a very good effort indeed.
It was 11 strokes better than the Carmarthen player’s first-round score and put her in joint 26th place on 159.
Sara Carty, the 19-year-old from The Island Golf Club, Dublin, continues to struggle on the Orange Blossom Tour. A six-handicapper taking a year out to improve her handicap, Sara had a 97 in the second round after a 94 on the first day
Par 72
141 Virginia Grimes (Mississippi) 69 72.
144 Ashley Knoll (Texas) 67 77, Song-Hee Kim (South Carolina) 72 72.
145 Tiffany Chudy (Florida) 72 73.
146 Rebecca Kuhn (Florida) 73 73.
147 Eileen Vargas (Columbia) 73 74, Stacy Lewis (Texas) 75 72.
Other scores:
151 Carol Semple Thompson (Pennsylvania) 76 75.
159 Vicki Thomas (Wales) 85 74.
191 Sara Carty (Ireland) 94 97.

Kirriemuir Golf Club demonstrates their desire to remain a leading golf coaching centre by installing the latest Putting Laboratory this month. A recent innovation, in golf coaching, the putt lab has been used by the worlds top golfers, over the past two years, to analyse and improve their putting strokes.
Kirriemuir GC are believed to be the first golf club in Scotland to install a putt lab. The installation of this equipment will ensure Kirriemuir stay at the forefront of golf coaching for the foreseeable future.
The results of the Total Golf coaching programme developed at Kirriemuir are impressive. Over the past three years Kirriemuir have sent many players to national Training squads. The last two Ladies British Stroke Play Champions received coaching at Kirriemuir in the months leading to their wins and in November 2005 two players who train at Kirriemuir went to tour school: it is believed another three will try later this year.
The £3,500 investment in the Putt Lab is added to the impressive video analysis equipment, which is already on site at Kirriemuir Golf Club. President of Angus County Golf Association and Club Administrator at Kirriemuir Golf Club, Charles Gowrie says, “What is happening here at Kirriemuir Golf Club is fantastic. Our Junior programme has over 250 children of which around 40% are girls and it is great to see so many top amateur and professional golfers working on their game here in this small rural Scottish town; there is a real buzz about the place”.
Check out the Total Golf website at

Calling all potential junior coaches....
Janette McCartney, who has run the site for the last few years has asked me to publicise this PGA Level 1 Coaching course at Erskine (see poster below).
She says
"Would you be able to feature this PGA Level 1 course which we are hosting at Erskine this year. We are at last getting some interest in Junior Golf and are trying to get a kick start to the year by holding a course at the club. As far as I know there are still places available so anyone would be most welcome. The poster also features a Good Practise and Child Protection workshop being held at Erskine next Tues 17th in the evening and I know there are places for that so please ask anyone interested to call me, details on the poster. "
Janette lives in the Glasgow area so prefix those telephone numbers with 0141.
Janette continues "Also I am not continuing with the web site this year, it is too time consuming and costly and golfers are not yet ready for online entries, perhaps in the next 10 years it will change."
[Thanks for all the work you put into it, Janette... it's not easy being at the cutting edge! We're certainly never going to make our fortunes reporting/publishing amateur golf news, but the feedback that Colin and I get goes a little way to making it all worthwhile. G]

Thursday 12th January 2006

Only two Scots – Ross  Bain and John Wither – were able to complete their second rounds before a suspension of play ended the second day’s action 90min early in the Asian Tour Final Qualifying School at the Palm Resort Golf & Country Club’s Allamanda and Cempaka courses on Thursday.
Dubai-based Ross did rather well with a 69 to share the overnight lead in the clubhouse with Jason King (Australia) on eight-under-par 136.
John Wither, who played on the Tartan Tour before moving his base to Malayasia some years ago, had a 72 for 141.
Only the leading 40 players at the end of four rounds will gain playing rights for the Asian Tour.
Graeme Brown, Barry Hume, Lee Rhind, Jamie McLeary, Eric Ramsay and Simon Dunn will be among those who go out at first light on Friday morning to complete their second rounds before starting their third rounds.
136 Ross Bain (Sco) 67 69, Jason King (Aus) 66 70.
137 Kang Ji-Man (Kor) 71 66, Scott Taylor (US) 68 68, Mohd Shabbir Iqbal (Pak) 70 67, Martin Doyle (Aus) 69 68.
138 Adam Porker (Aus) 74 64, Lam Chih-Bing (Sin) 70 68.
Other total:
141 John Wither (Sco) 69 72.

Welsh senior women’s amateur champion Vicki Thomas from Carmarthen Golf Club and Sara Carty of The Island Golf Club, Dublin were down the field at the end of the first round of the South Atlantic Ladies amateur championship at Oceanside Country Club, Ormond Beach.
In this, the latest event on the Orange Blossom Tour for women amateurs in Florida, Vicky, 50, had an 85 and 19-year-old Sarah a 94.
Stacy Lewis (University of Arkansas), runaway winner of the Harder Hall Invitational last week, did not carry over her brilliant form. She had a 75 for a share of eighth place.
First-round leader was Texas A&M university student. Ashley, rated sixth in the GolfWeek female college rankings, spreadeagled the field on the opening day with a brilliant five-under-par round of 67.
The only other player to break 70 was Virgina Grimes,  third in the “Sally” last year. The experienced Virginia, 41, was on her own in second place with a 69, three shots ahead of the third-placed Tiffy Chudy and 17-year-old Song-Hee Kim from Hilton Head, South Carolina.
Oceanside Country Club, Ormond Beach, Florida.
Leading first round scores (Par 72).
67 Ashley Knoll (Texas).
69 Virginia Grimes (Missouri)
72 Tiffany Chudy (Florida), Song-Hee Kim (South Carolina).
73 Eileen Vargas (Columbia), Rebecca Kuhn (Florida), Shelley McGraw (Texas).
75 Candace Schepperle (Alabama), Alex Bodermann (Florida), Maggie Weder (North Carolina), Ashley Grier (Maryland), Kira Meixner  (Canada), Nicole Hage (Florida), Stacy Lewis (Texas)
76 Carol Semple Thompson (Pennsylvania), In-Kyung Kim (South Carolina), Jean Reynolds (Georgia).
77 Kerry Postillion (Illinois), Corey Weworski (California), Chelsea Schriewer (Missouri).
Other scores:
85 Vicki Thomas (Wales).
94 Sara Carty (Ireland).

SLGA are looking for an Administration Assistant
Can I draw you attention to a vacancy within the SLGA to replace Alison Houston who is taking the job of Secretary at Muckhart Golf Club at the end of the month. This is the advertisement on the SLGA website.... [Good Luck to Alison in her new job!]


Candidates should be familiar with the structures of ladies’ golf, computer literate, self motivated but able to work as part of a team and have strong communication and organisational skills. You will deal with matters relating to team and training squad administration and provide administrative support to the course rating and handicap committees and other committees as required. Attention to detail and the ability to work to tight deadlines are imperative.
Salary and benefits package will be commensurate with experience.

Applications, in writing, accompanied by a curriculum vitae should be sent to:
Dr S E Hartley
The Secretary
Scottish Ladies’ Golfing Association
The Den
2 Dundee Road
marking the envelope Ref:AA Private & Confidential.
Closing date for applications: Monday 30 January 2006.

Chief executive Neil Hobday has explained why it has been necessary to put the company which had multi-million pound plans centred on the century-old Spey Bay links in Morayshire into administration.
“The whole project hinged on early planning approval. It didn’t happen. Finally, we were given three conditions to be met. They involved Roads, Sewage and Affordable Housing,” said Neil, a one-time manager of Colin Montgomerie.
“Things progressed so slowly that eventually our American investors said enough was enough. It just didn’t make economic sense to continue.”
During the winter, the business done by the Spey Bay Hotel – which Hobday & Co owned – was negligible but staff had to be paid and overheads met. Each winter that passed was a drain on the project’s finances.
“There is one thing that I am very pleased about in this whole affair,” said Neil.
“And that is we are leaving the next owners the legacy of a classic links course restored by us to its former glory. People who have played the Spey Bay links tell us that the greens are the best they have played on anywhere in the North and North-east.
“The whole golf course really is in great condition.”


50’s? 60’s? 70’s? 80’s? 90’s?




(TEL: 0141 570 3925 EMAIL:



Pick up an Entry form (Word doc) here

Wednesday 11th January 2006

Monifieth Girls at their prizegiving on Monday.
If all clubs were like Monifieth, we'd have no problems with dwindling numbers!

Monifieth Golf Club Junior Girls Presentation of prizes
Monifieth Golf Club junior girls held their annual presentation of prizes for 2005 in the clubhouse on Monday 9th January in the presence of a large number of parents, friends and club members.
Ann Hunter, girls’ junior convener, reported that the girls had another extremely successful year, representing the club, and consistently returning winning scores at twenty-nine different golf courses, from Tain in the north of Scotland to The Forest of Arden in England.
They played at the following courses:-
Elie, Strathtyrum (St Andrews) Carnoustie Buddon and Burnside, Forfar, St Andrews Bay Torrance and Devlin, Panmure Barry, Kirriemuir, Thornton, Craigielaw, Montrose, Downfield, Burntisland, Arbroath, Tain, Edzell, Oldmeldrum, Brechin, Windyhill, Lundin Ladies, Forest of Arden, Murcar, Silverburn, Scotscraig, Falkirk, Arbroath, Ballumbie and Petercoulter.
Monifieth Golf Club is fortunate to have 31 girl members and 8 pre-members. Pre-members may use the clubhouse and practice ground free and they pay a nominal fee for playing on the Monifieth Ashludie Golf Course.
Of the thirty-one members, twenty-two have LGU handicaps and nine have club handicaps as do all the pre-members. One girl has a category 1 handicap, four are category 2, four are category 3, eight are category 4 and five are category 5. The girls’ handicaps fell by a combined total of seventy-six shots during 2005.
Among their ranks are the Angus Ladies County Golf Association junior champion, the Angus Ladies’ County handicap champion, the Dundee and Angus Schools’ champion, the runner-up in the Ainsley Reid Salver at the Scottish Girls’ Championship at Tain, a runner-up in the Weetabix Age-group Championships at The Forest of Arden, four members of the SLGA junior development squads, three members of the Angus Ladies training squad, and the first winner of the Angus Ladies Junior Order of Merit. One girl was chosen for coaching by the Harman brothers and one girl qualified with her mother for the International Final of a modified stableford competition in Morocco, which they won.
Nothing however gave the girls more pleasure than beating Monifieth boys in the first ever girls versus boys match at the club. They also beat all the boys’ teams in a local Invitation Team Event.
In addition, they won five trophies, three brooches and three medals in competition with Monifieth Ladies.
Every Sunday from November to March, the girls compete in a Winter League and they brave all weathers to do so. On the day before the presentation, twenty-one girls took part.
Monifieth Golf Club and Monifieth Golf Links are very strongly committed to junior golf and the girls greatly appreciate the support they get from these bodies. The girls repay that support in full by their exemplary behaviour on and off the course both at home and away. They are a credit to Monifieth wherever they go.
List of Prizewinners

Dubai-based Ross Bain was the best placed Scot at the end of the first round of the Asian Tour Final Qualifying School’s 72-hole tournament which began at Palm Resort Golf & Country Club, Johor Bahru in Malaysia today.
Bain shot a five-under-par 67 to be joint fourth behind leader Brad Kennedy from Australia. Kennedy got off to a cracking start with a 10-under-par round of 62 and a three-stroke lead from compatriot Robin Hodgetts.
It was a good day for the Australians with three of them occupying the first three places and a fourth, Matt Keegan, in joint fourth place on 67.
Only the leading 40 at the end of four rounds will gain playing rights on the Asian Tour.
Graeme Brown from Montrose was in joint 16th place with a four-under 68 at the Allamanda course. Former Scottish amateur champion Barry Hume from Glasgow, also in action at Allamanda, had a 71 to be tied for 51st place.
Former Scottish boys’ open stroke-play champion Lee Rhind from Uphall opened his campaign at the Cempaka course and matched the par of 72. So high is the general standard of play that Lee is only 78th equal in the standings.
Former SGU Player of the Year Jamie McLeary (Leven Golfing Society) is back in a share of 98th place with Dubai-based Scot Simon Dunn. They both shot 73. McLeary played Cempaka in his first round.
Eric Ramsay, last year’s Australian open amateur champion from Carnoustie, has a lot of ground to make up after a 74 at Cempaka left him languishing in joint 130th place.
62 Brad Kennedy (Aus).
65 Robin Hodgetts (Aus).
66 Jason King (Aus).
67 Matt Keegan (Aus), Ross Bain (Sco), Rafael Ponce (Ecu), Oh Jun-Soek (Kor).
Other Scots scores:
68 Graeme Brown (jt 16th).
71 Barry Hume (jt 51st).
72 Lee Rhind (jt 78th).
73 Jamie McLeary, Simon Dunn (jt 98th).
74 Eric Ramsay (jt 130th).

Few Scots have been as successful in the amateur ranks as Vikki Laing in recent years. But somewhere along the transition to playing as a tour professional, the Musselburgh player lost the touch and consistency that won her Curtis Cup honours, a top-20 ranking on the American college circuit, the St Rule Trophy, a record-setting four Scottish girls’ match-play titles in a row plus the Scottish Under-21 girls’ stroke-play title.
Vikki, who will be 25 on March 14, did make it through the LPGA Tour School but only with non-exempt status, i.e. so low in the pecking order for places in any tournament that her opportunities even to play, let alone win any money, have been few and far between.
Last year she got into six LPGA events, widely spread out over the season, and, not surprisingly, she gained less than £5,000 in prizemoney, forcing her to go back to the Tour School where, this time, she was nearer the bottom of the class than the top – a tragedy for a player whose amateur career stood comparison with compatriots Catriona Matthew and Janice Moodie who had no problem finding their feet as tour pros in the States.
(Forget the fact that Vikki never won the Scottish women’s amateur title – she was never able to play in it due to her University of California commitments).
Now Miss Laing has set her sights on getting back to big-time tour through the Futures Tour, America’s No 2 women’s pro circuit where the prize money is only a fraction of what’s on offer on the LPGA circuit.
But it does offer Vikki a direct and automatic route back on to the No 1 tour by finishing among the leading five money-winners on the Futures Tour. Just as important, it should give the Scot what she has lacked since her four years at the University of California Berkeley, namely regular, week-in, week-out competitive play.
As Miss Laing freely admitted recently:
"It's definitely been difficult with the lack of financial help. I've been staying in some of the worst hotels you can stay in, and that can be pretty tough. A few times, I was camped out in places with wet floors, and I had to put my clothes and luggage on chairs to keep them dry. That kind of stuff is secondary, but you'd love to avoid it.
"Since the money coming in is sporadic, I've had to budget on what I can and can't do with regards to flights, hotels and transport. It's been a hard road."
Give Vikki credit for not letting her trials and tribulations since she turned pro get her down. She says she is genuinely excited about the prospect of a sustained run of tournaments on the Futures Tour.
"I plan to be ready to go on the tour in April and play in every tournament I can," she says.
"I really believe I should be playing on the LPGA Tour. That is certainly where I want to play and if I didn’t think I was a good enough player to make it eventually, then I would be as well as quitting the game now.”

Duff House Royal Golf Club’s long-serving professional Bob Strachan is leaving the Banff post at the end of the month … but he is not bowing out of golf.
Bob is moving only a few miles away to the new Myrus driving range near Macduff, where he will be the teaching pro.
“I’ve run the Duff House Royal pro’s shop for 31 years. I opened it while I was still the pro at Fraserburgh Golf Club. I moved to Duff House Royal 25 years,” said Bob who won several long-driving competitions in his younger days.
“I’d like to spend more time with Carol, my partner, who has not enjoyed the best of health lately and the Myrus attachment will give me the best of both worlds, being able to keep a golf connection while giving me more free time.
“Duff House Royal have made Carol and I honorary members which is very much appreciated.”
Bob, who has played in hickory international matches over the past few years, will be succeeded at Duff House Royal by Gary Holland who will take up his Banff duties on February 1.
Gary, at present an assistant at Kilmarnock Barassie Golf Club, won the Scottish boys’ open amateur stroke-play championship at Burntisland in 1998 and was a member of Scotland junior international teams while a member at Ballochmyle Golf Club.

A multi-million plan to redevelop Spey Bay Hotel, Morayshire and its 100-year old links course laid out by Ben Sayers has foundered.
The Edinburgh-based company behind the ambitious project went into administration early in the New Year.
A spokesman for the administrators, Edinburgh-based Tenon Recovery, said: “Both the golf course and hotel will continue to trade in order to determine the level of interest of various parties. The hotel has planning permission for the development of residential units which are also available for sale.”
Hobday Golf Company acquired the hotel and golf course with the support of equity investors from the United States and banking from Allied Irish Bank in March 2004.
Chief executive Neil Hobday, brother of South African golfer Simon Hobday, was a former manager of Colin Montgomerie and led Lyle Anderson’s operational team in the development of Loch Lomond Golf Club.
At the time of the purchase, Neil Hobday said:
“Spey Bay is Hobday Golf’s first venture into this marketplace, acquiring what many golfers refer to as a hidden gem. The links was the inspiration of the Duke of Gordon who asked Ben Sayers to mark out the course in the early 1900s. Ben created a true links course with great natural beauty and character, which opened in 2007 to great acclaim with an exhibition match between two former Open champions, Arnaud Massy and Sandy Herd.
“Our objective is to re-introduce Spey Bay to the golf world by restoring her reputation as a tough but fair best of links golf as well as an outstanding experience.”
The original Spey Bay Golf Hotel had fallen into disrepair before it was burned down in 1965.
Moray Council convener Eddie Coutts, who is councillor the for Spey Bay area, said he was disappointed that the development could now be in jeopardy.
“It was a development which was much needed for the area. It had received planning approval from the council and therefore had the potential to proceed. I am obviously disappointed that it may not now go ahead. Perhaps a new owner might progress the development but that is in no way certain,” said Mr Coutts.
Ramsay MacDonald, the Prime Minister at the time, became a member at Spey Bay Golf Club when asked to leave Moray Golf Club along the coastline at Lossiemouth. He remained a loyal Spey Bay member when the Moray club asked him to return to the fold at a later date.
Neil Hobday conceded that the Spey Bay links – at a little over 6,200yd, is short by modern standards but several holes were being lengthened and the sixth hole as Ben Sayers made it was being resurrected. As close to the sea (the Moray Firth), as any links course can claim to be, Spey Bay is regularly swept by sea breezes which make it long enough and tough enough for the average golfer.
[15th at Spey Bay (Photo courtesy and copyright © Cal Carson Golf Agency) ]

Tuesday 10th January 2006

Fife Council nominations to St Andrews Links Trust
St Andrews Links Trust has welcomed Kevin Mullins on to its Links Management Committee (LMC), following his nomination by Fife Council.
Mr Mullins replaces Drew Renwick, who has retired after a four-year term. The LMC is one of two committees which oversee the work of the Links Trust, the charitable body that administers and maintains the world-famous courses at the Home of Golf.
A well-known figure in St Andrews golfing circles, Mr Mullins, who is a five-handicapper, was educated at Madras College and is a member of the New Golf Club and the St Andrews Golf Club in the town, representing both in team events.
He was centenary captain of the New Club and has also chaired the St Andrews Inter-Club Liaison Committee.
“I am honoured to be put forward for a place on the Links Management Committee,” said Mr Mullins. “The LMC plays a very important role in helping to ensure the highest standards are maintained on the Links. I am very much looking forward to becoming a member of the committee.”
A retired police officer, Mr Mullins is married with three children and now manages his wife’s dental practice in Cupar.
Councillor Peter Douglas has been re-nominated by Fife Council to serve a second term on the LMC, and Fiona de Vries, who is the current St Rule Club champion, has been re-nominated as a Trustee for a further three years.

Four Scots tee it up today (WED) at the start of  the Asian Tour School Final Qualifying 72-hole at Palm Resort Golf & Country Club, Senai in Malayasia.
And Lee Rhind, Graeme Brown, and Barry Hume - who all came through last week's Stage 1 four-rounder - plus another Scotland amateur cap, Jamie McLeary will be boosted by a good luck message that has travelled 6,000 miles from Scotland. 
Hugh Hunter, past president of the Scottish Golf Union, and Graham Ewart, who stands down as the SGU president later this month, have sent an E-mail to the Asian Tour, asking for it to be passed on to the Scots.
It reads:
"We have read of your success 6000 miles away in qualifying for the final stage of the Asian Tour Qualifying, and so we would  wish you the best of luck this week.  You have done Scotland proud; keep up the good work.  "Just remember to keep swinging smoothly, and we look forward to reading about good performances from all four of you."
There is a field of 217 playing over the Cempaka and Allamanda courses at the Palm Resort Golf & Country Club. Only the leading 40 at the end of four rounds will gain Asian Tour cards.
Graeme Brown from Montrose strikes the first ball at 7.45am at the Allamanda venue where former Scottish amateur champion Barry Hume from Glasgow  will also be in action.
Jamie McLeary (Leven Golfing Society), who made the Asian Tour School Final Qualifying Stage 12 months ago, and Lee Rhind from Uphall will start their bids at the Cempaka course.


The Orange Blossom Tour in Florida moves on to the Oceanside Country Club at Ormond Beach this week for the 80th staging of the South Atlantic Ladies Amateur Championship – or “Sally” as the 72-hole stroke-play tournament has come to be popularly known.
Welsh senior women’s amateur champion Vicki Thomas from Carmarthen Golf Club and Sarah Carty of The Island Golf Club, Dublin along with a Norwegian, Ms Brynestad-Benedikre, and a German, Mayura Skowronksi, are the four Europeans in the field.
It will be next week before the Stirling University team of talented girls joins the Orange Blossom Tour.
Stacy Lewis, the University of Arkansas 20-year-old student who won last week’s Harder Hall Invitational by the runaway margin of 11 strokes with a two-under-par 72-hole aggregate, is obviously the one they all have to beat this week.
And yet Stacy does not have the low handicap one would expect. In fact, Vicki Thomas’s current handicap, 1.2, is less than Miss Lewis who has a rating of 2.3.
In the “Sally” field, the backmarker is a former professional Laura Coble from Augusta, who finished fourth behind Julieta Granada in the event last year. Laura has an actual handicap of +3.6. Next comes Kerry Postillion of Burr Ridge, Illinois with a +3 mark.
Harking back to Stacy Lewis for a moment. It is a miracle that she is playing golf at all, let alone golf of the highest quality. Less than three years ago she could barely walk. As Beth Ann Baldry wrote in “GolfWeek”:
" Diagnosed with scoliosis at age 11 and hiding a back brace under her clothes until late in her teens, Lewis was told that the curvature in her spine was too pronounced to ignore and something would have to be done within the next five years. She had to have surgery in the summer of 2003.
Following a six-hour operation that required doctors to deflate a lung and move organs in order to insert a steel rod, Lewis couldn't even sit up on her own. For the next three months she didn't leave her home, grappling with intense pain as she learned to walk again.
When she began her freshman year in Fayetteville, Lewis began chipping and putting since carrying anything over 5lb in weight was against doctor's orders. Six months after her surgery a timid Lewis swung a club for the first time.
"For a while I wondered if I could ever trust that nothing was going to happen to my back while I was swinging," said Lewis who shocked everyone in college golf – including herself – the following season by becoming the first Arkansas player to win three titles in a single season.
So what’s the weather like in Florida at this time of the year? Well, if last year’s South Atlantic Ladies Amateur championship is anything to go by, the competitors should have taken enough clothing to cover any from a heatwave to freezing conditions.
Last year Julieta Granada, the 18-year-old US girls’ open champion, had to play only three rounds to win the title. The third day’s play was washed out.
The tournament’s first round was played in temperatures touching the 80s. For the final round, players were wearing ski jackets to keep warm in a wind with a considerable chill factor.

Varied and innovative – as well as extremely profitable for Scotland’s top professionals – would best describe the programme of championships, tournaments and pro-ams worth at least £750,000 provided by the Scottish Region of the PGA for the 2006 season.
And for those players adept with ‘olde-worlde’ clubs, the World Hickory Open Championship welcomes the professional code at Craigielaw, East Lothian in early October, when players – using authentic pre-1935 clubs – will take part in a pro-am plus an 18-hole championship worth £17,500 over the two days.
Announcing details for the season today at Gleneagles Hotel, Scottish Secretary Peter Lloyd, again highlighted East Lothian, where the newly created Archerfield Links Four-ball Match-play Championship will feature 15 qualifiers, plus a pairing from the host club playing a pro-am on Friday April 21, and the knock-out stages over the ensuing two days.
Another unique event pays tribute to the achievements of three-time Ryder Cup player, John Panton. To celebrate his 90th birthday and span the spectrum of golfing ages, the John Panton ‘90th’ Young Professionals’ 36-hole tournament will be played over Glenbervie on 25 and 26 September, with a pro-am on the 24th.
In mid-October the biennial Bunkered Match-play Challenge moves to spanking new territory in the shape of the Carrick-on-Loch Lomond creation, part of the De Vere empire at Cameron House, which opens for play this year.
A contest between Scotland’s top home-based professionals and amateurs, it was narrowly won by the pros in 2004 at Macdonald Cardrona Hotel, near Peebles, where bad weather meant the abandonment of the final-day singles.
The flagship event of the year, the Gleneagles Scottish Championship over the PGA Centenary course, worth £55,000, has again been scheduled on a date to encourage entries from Scotland’s European Tour players.
On the basis that the World Golf Championship event at Firestone, Ohio is unlikely to feature too many Scots (from 24 – 27 August) the hope is that such as Alastair Forsyth, Steven O’Hara and Andy Oldcorn might feel inclined to test their mettle (not to mention picking up £13,000) against their domestic colleagues.
The defending champion, Paul Lawrie has already made it clear that, barring a WGC place, he’ll tee up at Gleneagles.
The 72-hole Northern Open returns to Skibo Castle, again with generous sponsorship worth £45,000 from an anonymous member of the Carnegie Club. The defending champion is Greenock’s Chris Doak.
Two events worth another £100,000 have still to be confirmed – the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Match-play Championship and the 72-hole Deer Park Masters.
Order of Merit:
April 3-4: Callaway 36 holes, Turnberry Kintyre
May 3-4: Callaway 36 holes, Craigielaw
May 8-10: Wateraid 54-hole tournament, St Andrews Bay (Torrance course)
May 16-19: Northern Open, Skibo Castle
June 3-4: Wishaw 36 holes
June 7-8: Pollok 36 holes
August 14-15: Volvo/Ayrshire Hospice 36 holes, West Kilbride
August 18-19: Williamwood Centenary 36 holes
August 24-27: Gleneagles Scottish Championship, PGA Centenary course
September 2-3: Kerr Timber 36 holes, Dumfries & Galloway
October 16-17: Callaway 36 holes, Lanark
Other main events:
April 21-23: Archerfield Links Fourball Championship
September 5-6: Johnnie Walker Elgin GC Centenary 36 holes
October 6: World Hickory Open Championship, Craigielaw
October 12-14: Bunkered Challenge, Carrick-on-Loch Lomond
To be confirmed: Deer Park Masters and Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Match-lay Championship.
Young Professionals’ Order of Merit:
April 17-20: Forres Scottish Young Professionals’ Championship, Forres
August 20-1: Shotts Pro Guide 54 holes
August 28-30: Paul Lawrie Young Professionals’ Match-play Championship, Newburgh-on-Ythan
September 24-26: John Panton ‘90th’ Young Professionals’ Tournament, Glenbervie
October 8-9: Royal Dornoch Masters

Monday 9th January 2006

The American Dream has come true for a Colette Murray from Dumfries.
She has been appointed Head Women’s Golf Coach at the University of Tennessee Chattanooga – its first in 20-odd years.
And Colette wants Scottish girls to be the backbone of the team she must build from scratch, ready to play – AND WIN - on the American college circuit in the autumn.
The university has not had women’s golf on its programme since the mid-1980s which means 24-year-old Miss Murray has to recruit at least 10 players  in double quick time.
All her head coach rivals in the Southern Conference have got the cream of the available teenage players, at home and abroad, signed up on “Letters of  Intent” to play for their college teams after the summer holidays.
“I am giving the rest of them a big start but I am running as fast I can to catch up, believe me,” said Colette last night on her return from a college coaches’ convention at Tahoe.
“I do hope to hear from girls anywhere with low handicaps, but particularly fellow Scots, who would like to come to Tennessee and play for me and the University of Tennessee Chattanooga.”
Colette had been assistant head coach with special responsibility for the women’s team at the Jacksonville State University, Alabama for the past 18 months after four years as a player at the same college.
 “I am the first women’s head coach at UCT University of Tennessee Chattanooga so I am building my own programme from scratch. Scary as it sounds, I am loving the prospect to bits. I have tremendous funding and golf scholarships at my disposal, better than I have ever heard of,” said Colette.
“It is my dream job and I want to start making some dreams come through for young girl golfers - especially Scottish girl golfers. I aim to build up a successful team, a team capable of winning tournaments and competing for the NCAA title on the college circuit and I want the best teenager girl golfers in Scotland to come out to Tennessee to play in my team and be part of my programme.
“The support from the community is phenomenal and the facilities are out of this world. We are currently building our own practice facility with both bent and Bermuda greens, a golf centre which myself and the men’s head coach can work from for teaching, not only our teams but people in the community using all the latest technology and equipment.
“It will have a 400 yard driving range with pot bunkers as yardage markers to keep you on the straight and narrow.
“I just love coaching and managing teams and all the experience I gained with the Jacksonville State University women’s team, both as a player and assistant coach, is going to stand me in good stead.
“I am young, enthusiastic and ambitious. I have big goals. My immediate goals are to find some student-athletes and to get familiar with my budget. It will be hard work, but I am certainly looking forward to it.”
++ Colette Murray can be contacted by prospective players and/or their parents by telephoning her in the United States at 001 423 503 8819 or E-mailing her at
[Those who know me, know that I am a firm advocate of staying in the UK for higher education. I do think that you get a better degree at the end of your course. BUSA and University Sports administrators try hard to provide a UK based University Golf programme for students, but funding is poor and opportunities to play meaningful golf in the winter are few and far between. It is inevitable that for many prospective student golfers their goal is a US Golf Scholarship... and although I don't condone it, I understand, and therefore I am publishing this story. GGK]

R&A Press Release

The R&A Training Panel has announced a list of 54 bursars who will receive awards ranging from £500 to £3,000 in the current academic year.`
This figure represents an increase of over 30% in the number of individual bursars and breaks new ground with the inclusion of Helena Arnadottir, a student at the University of Iceland.
Walker Cup player Richie Ramsay is a bursar at Stirling, one of eleven universities in receipt of annual grant funding towards their golf programmes and the others are; Birmingham, Dublin, Exeter, Glasgow, Heriot-Watt, Loughborough, Northumbria, St Andrews, Strathclyde and Ulster.
The R&A Foundation’s total annual spend on student golf is currently over £250,000.
Helena Arnadottir University of Iceland
James Barton University College Galway
Paul Betty University of Stirling
Samantha Birks University of Manchester
Scott Borrowman University of Stirling
Clancy Bowe Waterford Institute of Technology
Mark Campbell University College Dublin
Colin Colraine University of Strathclyde
Claudio Consul Imperial College, London
Jon Devereux University of Wales, Swansea
Maura Diamond Napier University
Nobuhle Dlamini St Mary’s, Swaziland
Gulia Garbaccio University of Torino, Italy
Karl Gilbert University of Durham
Iwan Griffiths University of Wales, Swansea
Chris Harkins University of Glasgow
Kerri Harper University of Abertay
David Hayes Oxford Institute of Legal Practice
Matthew Jones University of Wales Institute, Cardiff
Mark Kerr University of Edinburgh
Niamh Kitching University of Limerick
Roberto Laino University of Durham
Shane Lowry Athlone Institute of Technology
Alexander MacGregor University of Exeter
Robert MacGregor University of Exeter
Alex Marshall University of Stirling
Greg McBain North Highland College
Alex McCloy University of Ulster
Brian O’Connor Senior College Dun Laoghaire
Paul O’Hanlon National University of Ireland
Gillian O’Leary University College Cork
Sinead O’Sullivan University College Dublin
Jason Palmer University of Birmingham
Blair Paterson University of Stirling
Matteo del Podio University of Torino, Italy
Euan Polson University of Stirling
Richie Ramsay University of Stirling
Andrea Romano University of Bologna, Italy
Anna Roscio University of Turin, Italy
Julie Ross Northumbria University
Samantha Round University of Gloucestershire
Faye Sanderson Northumbria University
Nicholas Scholey Northumbria University
Ben Shamash University of Edinburgh
Elliot Shaw University of Cardiff
William Shucksmith University of Durham
Robert Taylor University of Abertay
Ryan Thomas University of Glamorgan
Emma Tipping University of Stirling
Catherine Tucker University of Limerick
Graham Turner University of Stirling
Vittoria Valvassori University of Teramo, Italy
Simon Ward University of Ulster
Craig Wilkinson Northumbria University

Press Release`

The Charles Church Scottish Seniors Open will return to Marriott Dalmahoy Hotel & Country Club in Scotland, from September 1-3. It will be the fourth time the tournament has been staged on Marriott Dalmahoy’s renowned East Course, which has recently undergone a £1m upgrade.
On the last occasion the Midlothian venue hosted the Scottish Seniors Open, in 2000, the spectators were treated to a spectacular final day display from Australian Noel Ratcliffe, who produced a seven under par 65 to come from seven strokes off the lead and snatch the title.
Despite Ratcliffe’s brilliance and the victory by England’s Neil Coles - the current Chairman of the European Tour Group - in 1999, the most popular winner associated with Marriott Dalmahoy Hotel & Country Club has to be David Huish, the Edinburgh-born professional who beat Northern Ireland’s David Jones in a thrilling play-off to capture the title in 1998.
Bill Longmuir became the second Scotsman to win his national seniors open when he triumphed at The Roxburghe Hotel & Golf Course, Kelso, in 2004, while Aberdonian John Chillas has twice gone close, missing out by a shot that year and finishing tied third in 2003.
Defending champion in 2006 will be England’s Nick Job, who in August closed with a one under par 71 to beat former professional footballer Jean-Pierre Sallat of France at The Roxburghe, which has been the venue for the previous five editions of the Scottish Seniors Open.
Andy Stubbs, Managing Director of the European Seniors Tour, said: “We are delighted to be returning to the Marriott Dalmahoy Hotel & Country Club later this year for the 14th edition of the tournament. The championship East Course hosted the Scottish Seniors Open between 1998 and 2000 and we witnessed three great tournaments from which emerged three worthy winners in David Huish, Neil Coles and Noel Ratcliffe.
“We are extremely grateful to Charles Church and EventScotland for their support of one of our premier events at one of the Home of Golf’s great inland golfing venues. The Marriott Dalmahoy Hotel & Country Club is a wonderful facility in a prime position near the Scottish capital, Edinburgh, and I know our players will enjoy the recent changes and are already looking forward to September. The baronial splendour of the hotel and the excellent leisure facilities will provide a fitting accompaniment to what I am sure will be a fantastic tournament.”
Neal Graham, Director of Golf at Marriott Dalmahoy, is delighted the tournament is returning. “The new layout for the Championship East Course opened in May, following a high level of investment, and we are certain it will provide a fantastic challenge for the cream of the European Seniors Tour.”
David Bryant, Main Board Director of Charles Church, one of the UK’s leading housebuilding brands, said: “Over the years Charles Church has built a strong reputation for supporting golf in Scotland and we are delighted to mark our fifth year as title sponsor of the Scottish Seniors Open with a move to the magnificent Marriott Dalmahoy Hotel & Country Club in Midlothian.
“We have been part of four great tournaments at The Roxburghe, where the Duke was a superb host, but now we are focused on making the return to Marriott Dalmahoy another memorable chapter in Scotland’s rich golfing history.”

Northern Counties did not take long to find a replacement for Cara Gruber (Royal Dornoch) who resigned as junior secretary only two or three days ago.
"It is with pleasure that I announce that Lorna Lloyd Baker of Grantown on Spey has taken on the role," said NCLGA captain Mairi Orr.
"Lorna is the vice-captain at Grantown and has a wealth of knowledge and experience. We welcome her strengths.
"Cara Gruber wrote to me, explaining that she now has a full-time job and would need time to concentrate on her own golf and so is stepping down from the role of junior secretary of the county. We wish her well."

Sunday 8th January 2006

Welsh senior champion Vicki Thomas from Carmarthen, handicapped by a bad head cold, slipped out of contention for the over-50s’ title over the final round of the 51st Harder Hall Invitational women’s amateur tournament, the first event of the Orange Blossom Tour in Florida.
The former Curtis Cup player and eight times Welsh women’s amateur title-winner had scores of 76, 81, 80 and 84 for a total of 321. The senior title went to Diane Lang, the USGA senior women’s champion, who had started the final day one shot behind Vicki. Diane, from Weston, Florida, had scores of 80, 78, 80 and 77 for 315.
Runner-up in this category was the tournament director of the event at Harder Hall Country Club, Sebring – Carol Semple Thompson, with scores of 83, 76, 81 and 76 for 316.
Carol, the record-setting United States Curtis Cup player from Sewickley, Pennsylvania, won the main event three times in a row in the 1990s but, as she joked this week, “I guess I am better on a computer than I am on the golf course these days.”
Vicki Thomas did tie with Taffy Brower from Boynton Beach, Florida on 157 for the senior medallist prize, awarded on 36-hole aggregates. Mrs Brower was unable to complete the tournament because of illness.
American college students dominated the main event with Stacy Lewis (University of Arkansas) chalking up one of the biggest-margin victories in the 51 years of the “Harder Hall”
Stacy,  pictured left, from The Woodlands, Texas, won in the end by 11 shots with scores of 69, 69, 75 and 73 for a two-under-par total of 286. Even Morgan Pressel, winner of the title last year before going on to greater things in 2005, did not have as many shots in hand.
Victory had been in Miss Lewis’s grasps after her first two rounds of three under par each.  Even after the weather turned much colder and windier for the last two rounds, this University of Arkansas golfer was the model of consistency over the 6,151yd course. 
When asked what she was doing differently this tournament, Stacy replied: “I am trying something different with my putting.”  She then smiled and said, “I think I will keep doing it.” 
Stacy started the final round with a six-stroke lead.  She bogeyed the first hole, but any thoughts her fellow competitors might have had that they could catch her were dashed when she birdied the short par-4 second hole.  The tournament story then turned to how many she would win by and who would finish second.
Augusta State University sophomore Garrett Phillips, from St Simons Island, Georgia, maintained her overnight second place with a final total of 297. Her scores were 77, 74, 68 and 78.
Sarah Carty, a 19-year-old six-handicapper from The Island Golf Club, Dublin and the only other European apart from Vicki Thomas competing in the event, finished on 346 with scores of 89, 81, 88 and 88.
Sarah has taken a year out to improve her handicap and is playing in all four Orange Blossom Tour events on the suggestion of her coach.
For a fuller report of Stacy Lewis's win read Beth Ann Baldry's account on Golfweek
286 Stacy Lewis (Texas) 69 68 75 73.
297 Garrett Phillips (Georgia) 77 74 68 78.
298 Abigale Schepperie (Alabama) 73 79 73 73.
299 Michelle Jarman (North Carolina) 71 72 80 76.
300 Stephanie Godare (Texas) 70 75 79 76, Adrienne Millican (North Carolina) 75 73 79 73.
301 Alison Walsh (Massachusetts) 76 68 79 78, Leah M Wigger (Kentucky) 77 73 74 77, Sara Brown (Arizona) 77 69 79 76, Candace Schepperie (Alabama) 77 72 78 74.
Other totals:
315 Diane Lang (Florida) 80 78 80 77.
316 Carol Semple Thompson (Pennsylvania) 83 76 81 76.
321 Vicki Thomas (Wales) 76 81 80 84.
346 Sarah Carty (Ireland) 89 81 88 88. 

Europe Secure Narrow Victory in The Royal Trophy

Europe withstood a spirited fightback from the Asian team to win the inaugural Royal Trophy 9-7 after a dramatic final day at Amata Spring Country Club, Bangkok, Thailand.
Swede Henrik Stenson secured the winning point, beating Thailand's Thongchai Jaidee 5 and 4 in the anchor match, after the Irish duo of Paul McGinley and Graeme McDowell put the first two points on the board for Europe.
For European captain Seve Ballesteros the win sealed a remarkable hat-trick as he has now led Europe to victory in The Ryder Cup, The Seve Trophy and now The Royal Trophy.
"I am really very happy with the final score today," said Ballesteros. "It has been a great two days of competition and the European Team played fantastic. The Asian team also showed a tremendous game and sportsmanship.
"Congratulations to the Asian team and Massy Kuramoto. On this occasion we had a little more luck but at the end of the day golf is the real champion. This event is just the start and I think we are making history here."
After dominating the opening day, Europe took a 6-2 lead into the final day singles but victory was far from a formality as Asia threw everything at the European players.
Europe needed only two and a half points to win the trophy but at one point Asia were up in six, level in one and down in only one match. Europe rallied, with McGinley leading the way by coming back from two down against Zhang Lian Wei to win 2 and 1.
McDowell followed suit in bettering Jyoti Randhawa 3 and 2 to ensure both Irishmen came away from the contest with three wins out of three.
"I spoke to Seve as I came off the ninth and I had just lost two holes on the bounce to go back to one up," said McDowell. "Seve said things weren't looking too great on the golf course. I realised my match would be important and every point we put on the board was going to be big but I didn't realise how close it was going to be in the end."
With David Howell losing a closely fought tussle in the top match to Japan's Yasuharu Imano on the final hole and Asia dominating the middle order, Stenson's match became vital.
Jaidee was cheered all the way by the huge crowds which swarmed over course but had no answer to the power of Stenson as the Swede pulled away after the turn for a comfortable victory. Like McDowell and McGinley, Stenson finished the week with a 100% record.
"Playing Jaidee was always going to be a tough match and I am pleased with the way I played," said Stenson. "I turned it around on the 11th and 12th and 13th so won three straight holes there and it was done and dusted with five holes to go."
It was a brave effort from the Asian team as red dominated the board with Arjun Atwal beating Nick Faldo 3 and 2, Thaworn Wiratchant defeating Ian Woosnam  2 and 1 and Keiichiro Fukabori overcaming Thomas Bjorn 4 and 3. Kenneth Ferrie was also beaten 2 and 1  by Sk Ho as Asia took the session 5-3 but in the end it was not quite enough as Europe emerged triumphant.
"I was happy to see the boys fight back after yesterday," said Asian team captain Masahiro Kuramoto. "For a moment it looked possible that we could upset Europe and our players grew in confidence. We proved today that we could compete. We gave it our best but the Europeans did a bit better."
Sunday (Singles) Asia 5 Europe
Yasuharo Imano (Jpn) bt David Howell (Eng) 2-up
Zhang Lian-wei (Prc) lost to Paul McGinley (Ire) 2 & 1
Jyoti Randhawa (Ind) lost to Graeme McDowell (Nir) 3 & 2
Arjun Atwal (Ind) bt Nick Faldo (Eng) 3 & 2
Thaworn Wiratchant (Tha) bt Ian Woosnam (Wal) 2 & 1
SK Ho (Kor) bt Kenneth Ferrie (Eng) 2 & 1
Keiichiro Fukabori (Jpn) bt Thomas Bjorn (Den) 4 & 3
Thongchai Jaidee (Tha) lost to Henrik Stenson (Swe) 5 & 4
Saturday Morning (Foursomes) Asia 1 Europe 3
SK Ho (Kor) & Keiichiro Fukabori (Jpn) lost to David Howell (Eng) & Kenneth Ferrie (Eng) 2-up
Arjun Atwal (Ind) & Jyoti Randhawa (Ind) lost to Paul McGinley (Ire) & Graeme McDowell (Nir) 4&3
Yasuharu Imano (Jpn) & Zhang Lian-wei (Prc) lost to Thomas Bjorn (Den) & Henrik Stenson (Swe) 1-up
Thaworn Wiratchant (Tha) & Thongchai Jaidee (Tha) bt Nick Faldo (Eng) & Ian Woosnam (Wal) 6&5
Saturday Afternoon (Fourball) Asia 1 Europe 3
Arjun Atwal (Ind) & Jyoti Randhawa (Ind) beat David Howell (Eng) & Kenneth Ferrie (Eng) 1-up
SK Ho (Kor) & Zhang Lian-wei (Prc) lost to Graeme McDowell (Nir) & Paul McGinley (Ire) 2 & 1
Thaworn Wiratchant (Tha) & Thongchai Jaidee (Tha) lost to Thomas Bjorn (Den) & Ian Woosnam (Wal) 3 & 2
Keiichiro Fukabori (Jpn) & Yasuharu Imano lost to Nick Faldo (Eng) & Henrik Stenson (Swe) 1-up

Northern Counties team player Cara Gruber, a member at Royal Dornoch Golf Club, has resigned as junior secretary of the county.
Cara, 25, was a member of the team that won the Northern Division team championship at Elgin last year but she was not in the Northern Counties squad who went on to play in the Scottish county finals at Ranfurly Castle.
Cara did play in the Northern Counties team who won the Scottish county title at Scotscraig in 2003 and again at Nairn Dunbar in 2004.
She won the Northern Counties individual title at Duff House Royal in 2001 and lost to Liz McKinnon in the following year’s final at Lossiemouth.
Miss Gruber, who lives in Strathpeffer, is determined to succeed in a third attempt to get through the Ladies European Tour Qualifying School at the end of the season.
“I will be playing in all the SLGA national and LGU events in 2006 and, all going well, I will be back the Tour School again,” said Cara.
“I will be working in my father’s accountancy firm, Leggatt & Co, in Dingwall to finance my golf trips.”
Her brother, Gary Gruber, is head greenkeeper at Skibo Castle.

ELGA Press Release
Buckinghamshire’s Clara heads for USA

Buckinghamshire’s Clara Leathers is bound for the USA on a golf scholarship with Middle Tennessee State University.
Clara, 19, leaves in mid-August to start her four year course in psychology and PE and says: “I can’t wait.”
In the meantime the Ellesborough three-handicapper will play a full schedule of English ladies’ events. “I’ve never had a year when I’ve been able to think only of golf without other things on my mind, like exams! I’m going to give it a good go.”
Clara has just helped her club team to win the Mail on Sunday National Golf Club Classic and she’s the current South-East foursomes champion, with Nicole Whitmore of Woburn. She is also a past county girls’ champion and has twice won the Berks, Bucks & Oxon girls’ title.
Middle Tennessee’s head women's golf coach, Rachael Short, said: “We are very excited to get a player of her calibre. Clara is a very mature player who has a tremendous amount of tournament experience. She is a big hitter and someone who I feel will come in and make an immediate impact in our programme."

Saturday 7th Januay 2006

WELSH senior women’s amateur golf champion Vicki Thomas from Carmarthen tied with Taffy Brower (Boynton Beach, Florida) for senior medallist honours after three rounds of the 51st Harder Hall Invitational women’s tournament at Harder Hall Golf Club, Sebring in Florida.
Vicki had a third-round 81 in cold, windy conditions for a 54-hole tally of 237. The former Curtis Cup player’s earlier rounds were a pair of 78s.
Sarah Carty, a 19-year-old six-handicapper, from the Island Golf Club, Dublin has had rounds of 89, 81 and 88 for 258. Sarah has a taken a year out to improve her golf handicap and, on the advice of her coach, has entered all four events that make up the Orange Blossom Tour in Florida every January.
The championship is decided over 72 holes and University of Arkansas student Stacy Lewis, from The Woodlands, Texas, is heading for a clear-cut win. She shot a third-round 75, three over par for the 6,151yd course, for a tally of three-under-par 213 with one round to go.
That boosted Stacy’s overnight lead to seven shots from another US college circuit player, Garrett Phillips (Augusta State University) from St Simons Island, Georgia. As the leaders struggled in the conditions, Garrett vaulted from 16th place at the start of the day to second with a brilliant round of four-under 68 for 219.
Carol Thompson, the tournament director and winner of the prestigious “Harder Hall” title three times in a row in the 1990s, has scored 83, 76 and 81 for 240. A record-setting Curtis Cup player for the United States, Carol joked: “I guess I am better on the computer than out on the golf course these days.”
213 Stacy Lewis (Texas) 69 69 75.
219 Garrett Phillips (Georgia) 77 74 68.
223 Michelle Jarman (North Carolina) 71 72 80, Alison Walshe (Massachusetts) 76 68 79.
Other scores:
237 Vicki Thomas (Wales) 78 78 81.
240 Carol Thompson (Pennsylvania) 83 76 81.
258 Sarah Carty (Ireland) 89 81 88.

Three Scots – Graeme Brown from Montrose, Glasgow’s Barry Hume and Lee Rhind (Uphall) – survived the Asian Tour Qualifying School Stage 1 in Malaysia on Saturday. They go forward to the Final School next week when the leading 40 will gain playing rights on the Asian Tour.
Murray Urquhart from Inverness, Neil Douglas, a former assistant pro at Nairn Dunbar Golf Club, and the Doherty brothers, Paul and Jack, both based in South Wales, failed to figure among the Stage 1 qualifiers from four venues at Johor Bahru.
The standard of play necessary was to make the grade was very good. The leading 14 and ties made it through at the Straits course with 10 under par 278 or better. The same number advanced from the Village and Allamanda courses with five under par (283) and seven under par (281) or better totals.
Only at the Cempaka venue where the top 18 and ties went forward was par golf (288) for the four rounds good enough to qualify.
Barry Hume, who won the Scottish amateur championship of 2001 at Downfield as a Haggs Castle GC, member, scored best of the three successful Scots. He had rounds of 66, 70, 73 and 71 for an eight-under-par total of 280 at Allamanda. That took him through in joint 12th place but only with one shot to spare.
Another former Scotland amateur team international, Graeme Brown qualified at the Village course with scores of 72, 69, 70 and 72 for five-under-283. That gave him a ticket to next week’s Final Stage with nothing to spare.
Murray Urquhart failed to make it at the Village despite being four under par for the last 36 holes. He missed out by three shots with scores of 74, 72, 70 and 70 for two-under 286.
Another Scot who missed out at the Village venue was former Nairn Dunbar assistant pro Neil Douglas who moved his base to Asia some years ago. He was well out of contention with sdor3s of 72, 82, 75 and 78 for 307.
Lee Rhind, winner of the Scottish boys’ open stroke-play title at Downfield in 1997 and a winner on the EuroPro Tour in England last year, qualified at Cempaka in joint 12th place. Lee shot 73, 72, 72 and 70 for one-under 287 at the venue where the top 18 and ties advanced with totals of 288 or better.
Paul Doherty, Scottish boys’ match-play champion at Dunbar in 2003, shot 71, 72, 70 and 68 for seven-under 281 – but still failed by three shots to survive at the Straits course, where the standard of scoring was the highest.
His older brother Jack, last year’s Australian open amateur champion, shot 73, 71, 72 and 71 for 288 at the same venue and still had 58 players ahead of him.
Stage 1 at Johor Bahru, Malaysia
Qualifiers for next week’s Final Stage from the four venues (all par 72).
Tanjong Puteri G&CC – Village course
276 Yasin Ali (Eng) 72 67 67 70.
278 S Griffiths (Eng) 69 68 70 70.
279 E Wang (US) 72 70 65 72, B Mason (Eng) 68 69 74 68.
280 K Webber (Aus) 73 70 68 69.
281 J Smith (Aus) 69 760 68 68, P Pogamnerd (Thai) 69 73 71 68, S Shimouchi (Jap) 71 67 73 70, K Yokoyama (Jap) 71 67 73 70.
282 S Ishigaju (Jap) 73 68 69 72, Lars Johansson (Swe) 71 69 72 70, S Saedin (Malaysia) 69 68 72 73.
283 J King (Aus) 71 72 71 69, M Zions (Aus) 72 71 74 66, G Brown (Sco) 72 69 70 72 (pictured right), J Templer (Eng) 70 71 71 71.
Non-qualifiers included:
286 M Urquhart (Sco) 74 72 70 70.
288 G Day (Eng) 71 73 73 71, R Wragg (Eng) 74 70 74 70.
291 J Sheffield (Eng) 71 74 71 75.
295 M Skelton (Eng) 76 72 73 74.
307 N Douglas (Sco) 72 82 75 78.
Tanjong Puteri G&CC – Straits course
271 H Reed (Aus) 66 65 67 73.
272 D Wardrop (Eng) 68 67 67 70.
273 L Atkinson (Eng) 70 70 68 65, J Kavanagh (Eng) 72 66 69 66.
274 H Perks (Aus) 68 70 68 68.
275 P Karmis (SA) 67 65 71 72, D Lutterus (Aus) 65 71 68 71.
276 J Abbot (Aus) 67 70 67 72, R  Beste (Aus) 73 64 67 72.
277 M Bryant (Aus) 71 71 68 67, I Parnaby (Eng) 66 73 68 70, A Porker (Aus) 66 68 70 73.
278 M Nakayama (Jap) 69 71 65 73, M Milone (Aus) 70 70 69 69, M Cidonio (Ita) 72 566 68 72, Bang Doo-Hwan (Kor) 69 66 69 74.
Non-qualifiers included:
281 P Doherty (Sco) 71 72 70 68.
288 J Evans (Eng) 74 69 71 74, J Doherty (Sco) 73 72 72 71.
290 P O’Rourke (Ire) 68 72 76 74.
291 D Robson (Eng) 74 74 70 73.
292 R Jones (Eng) 77 70 71 74.
Palm Resort G&CC – Allamanda course.
274 H Alberts (SA) 66 69 73 66.
276 K Yamashita (Jap) 71 68 69 68, K Stone (SA) 72 65 67 72.
277 E Porter (Aus) 71 68 67 71.
278 B Shilton (NZ) 69 68 72 68, A Brown (Aus) 68 68 70 72, A McKenzie (Aus) 69 74 66 69.
279 R Tipping (SA) 67 72 73 67, M Joyce (Aus) 73 70 68 69, J Inglis (Eng) 69 71 69 70, H Epstein (Aus) 67 71 70 71.
280 B Hume (Sco) 66 70 73 71 (pictured right), R Hamilton (US) 70 68 70 72.
281 J Theunis (Bel) 74 71 72 64, T Yoshikawa (Jap) 70 71 70 70, K Woong (Kor) 76 77 69 70.
Non-qualfiers included:
284 E Barr (Ire) 66 74 72 72.
285 D Watson (Eng) 77 69 69 70.
288 G Willman (Eng) 72 69 72 75.
289 R Edgington (Eng) 75 69 69 76.
293 S Cage (Eng) 74 70 75 74.
301 G McNeill (Ire) 75 72 72 82.
203 R Mountford (Eng) 77 75 73 76.
306 L Genney (Eng) 73 77 78 78. 
Palm Resort G&CC – Cempaka course.
274 M Wright (Aus) 68 67 68 71.
278 G Flint (Aus) 72 73 66 67.
279 D Rea-noh (Kor) 67 69 71 72, P Jun-won (Kor) 67 70 69 73.
280 T Carolan (Aus) 70 72 71 67, D Swanson (Can) 68 69 71 72.
281 S Hurd (Eng) 689 75 72 66.
282 G Mulloy (SA) 73 73 67 69, M maritz (SA) 69 68 73 72.
283 T Van Aswegen(SA) 70 73 72 68.
286 L Hillmott (Aus) 72 74 68 72.
287 B Pieters (SA) 79 69 73 66, T McFadyean (Aus) 73 71 75 68, I Keenan (Eng) 71 76 72 68, L Rhind (Sco) 73 72 72 70 (pictured right) , M Bruggemann (Aus) 74 69 71 73.
288 L Chi-Wei (Tai) 76 68 73 71, C Gill (Eng) 72 73 71 72, A Tani (Jap) 75 71 70 72, T Kennedy (Aus) 74 67 72 75, A D Bateman (Can) 72 69 72 75, J Lane (Aus) 73 70 70 75.
Non-qualifiers included:
291 J Parker (Eng) 72 74 71 74.
292 S Mason (Eng) 73 70 73 76.
295 C Swinburn (Eng) 73 74 76 72.
286 D Hutton (Eng) 75 71 79 71.
304 N Redfern (Eng) 76 75 78 75.

Friday 6th January 2006

Celebrities including two-time Major winner, Sandy Lyle and supermodel, Jodie Kidd will be playing in golf's 'coolest' tournament - The Chivas Snow Golf Championship – at Engadin, St Moritz, Switzerland next week (Friday and Saturday, January 13 and 14th). The tournament, which is played on a nine-hole snow course, will see Sandy come up against a field including European Tour professional golfers Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano (Spain) and Lee Slattery (England).
In addition, the women's field includes compulsive golfer, Jodie Kidd.The tournament forms part of the Chivas Life Series - a series of inspiring events in extraordinary places including Chivas Elephant Polo in Nepal and The Chivas Ocean Series in Uruguay.

Montrose man Graeme Brown, pictured right, boosted his chances of advancing to next week’s Final Stage with a third-round 70 for a five-under-par tally of 211 at the Tanjong Puteri’s Village course in the Asian Tour’s Qualifying School Stage 1 competition in Malaysia.
Scotland amateur cap Brown is tied for third place, four shots behind leader American Eric Wang on nine-under-par 207 at this venue.
Murray Urquhart from Inverness, also playing at the Village course, had a 72 for level par 216 and is in joint 16th place with seven other players.
Only the leading 14 and ties from each of the four venues will go forward to next week’s final elminator.
Former Scottish amateur champion Barry Hume from Glasgow is tied ninth on seven-under-par 209 after a third-round 73 at the Palm Resort Golf & Country Club’s Allamanda course. He is five shots behind leader Kevin Stone Australia.
Lee Rhind from Uphall) is in joint 23rd place at the Palm Resort’s Cempaka course. He had a 72 for one-over-par 217.
The Doherty brothers, Paul and Jack, have the misfortune to be playing at the Straits course, Tanjong Puteri, where the standard of scoring is the highest in depth of the four venues.
Paul, the younger Doherty and a former Scottish boys’ match-play champion, is on three-under-par 213 after a third-round but that is only good enough to put him in joint 39th place behind three players tieing for the lead at 11-under-par 205.
Jack, also based at Vale of Glamorgan, is sharing 61st place on one-over 217 after a 72.
Some players have still to finish their third rounds before the decisive fourth round.
204 Kevin Stone (Aus) 72 65 67.
Other score:
207 Barry Hume (Sco) 66 70 73 (joint 9th).
203 Michael Wright (Aus) 68 67 68.
Other score:
217 Lee Rhind (Sco) 73 72 72 (joint 23rd).
207 Eric Wang (US) 72 70 65.
210 Sushi Ishigaki (Jap) 73 68 69.
211 Graeme Brown (Sco) 72 69 70, Kane Webber (Aus) 73 70 68.
Other scores:
216 Murray Urquhart (Sco) 74 72 70 (joint 16th).
205 Masayohi Nakayama (Jap) v69 71 65, Mats Pilo (Swe) 71 68 66, Yuuki Satsu (Jap) 68 71 67.
Other scores:
213 Paul Doherty (Sco) 71 72 70 (joint 39th).
217 Jack Doherty (Sco) 73 72 72 (joint 61st).

Welsh senior women’s amateur champion Vicki Thomas from Carmarthen dropped down to a share of 33rd place with a second-round 81 in the 51st Harder Hall Invitational tournament at Harder Hall Golf Club, Sebring in Florida.
Vicki, who had an four-over-par 76 on the opening day, was on the 157 mark at the halfway stage.
She was one stroke inside the cut mark which saw the leading 41 players with totals of 158 or better going on to the final two rounds of the championship, won last year by Morgan Pressel.
Sarah Carty, a 19-year-old from The Island Golf Club, Dublin had rounds of 89 and 81 for 170 which put her in a tie for 85th place.
Stacy Lewis, an Arkansas University student from The Woodlands, Texas, shot a second straight 69 to increase her overnight lead to five shots with a tally of six-under-par 138.
Michelle Jarman (University of North Carolina-Wilmington) had an even par 72 to move into second place on 143.
UNC-W team-mate Lauren Hunt and Alison Walshe, the collegiate without a home school, are tied for third place on 144.
Walshe, who should be playing for Tulane is now attending Southern Methodist University, having been displaced by the floods which devastated New Orleans.
Tournament director and three-time winner of the title in the 1990s, Carole Semple Thompson scored 83 and 76 for 159.

Thursday 5th January 2006

Former Scottish amateur champion Barry Hume (Haggs Castle), pictured right, and Graeme Brown from Montrose, a more recent member of the Scotland amateur international team, are the only two Scots who need only to hold their halfway position to progress from Stage 1 of the Asian Tour Qualifying School to next week’s Final Stage.
The remainder need to show considerable improvement over the last two rounds.
Hume has shot 66 and 70 for a 36-hole tally of eight-under-par 136 over the Allamanda course at Palm Resort Golf & Country Club, Johor Bahru in Malaysia.
Barry is joint second, one behind South African Hendrick Alberts at this venue.
Graeme Brown, who had a delayed finish to his first-round 72, went out again and returned a 69 to be lying joint ninth on three-under-par 141 at the Village course at Tanjong Puteri Golf & Country Club. Brown is four shots behind joint leaders Ben Mason (England), Sahal Saedin (Malaysia) and Yumihiko Hatone (Japa) on 137 at this venue.
Murray Urquhart from Inverness is sharing 33rd place at the Village course after scoring 74 and 72 for 146. Neil Douglas is tied for 56th place at this venue after 72 and 82 for 154.
Lee Rhind (Uphall) is joint 24th at the Cempaka course after rounds of 73 and 72 for 145. Michael Wright (Australia) leads here on 135.
Only the top 14 and ties from each of the four venues will go forward to join the exempt players at next week’s Final Qualifying School at the Palm Resort Golf & Country Club. A total of 40 Asian Tour cards will be available at the end of that.


Former Curtis Cup player Vicki Thomas is lying in joint 15th place after the first round of the 51st Harder Hall Invitational at Harder Hall Golf Club, Sebring in Florida.
This is the first of four tournaments that make up the Orange Blossom Tour for women amateurs every January in Florida.
Vicki, the Welsh senior women’s amateur champion from Carmarthen Golf Club, had a creditable round of 76 – four over par for the 6,151yd course.
Sarah Carty, a 19-year-old six-handicapper from The Island Golf Club, Dublin, is the only other European player in the capacity field. She had an 89 and is tied for 82nd place.
University of Arkansas student Stacy Lewis holds the pole position after an excellent three-under-par 69.  Another US college player from Texas, Stephanie Godare (Mississippi State) is in second place on her own with a 70.
It is one of the most competitive fields in the history of the event with 45 collegiate players and five current and former USGA national champions taking part.
Tournament director Carol Semple Thompson, the record-setting US Curtis Cup player and three-time winner of the “Harder Hall” in the early 1990s, from Sewickley, Pennsylvania, had an 83.
“I think I am better on the computer than on the golf course these days,” joked Carol after her round.
The 72-hole tournament ends on Saturday and consists of two divisions – the championship division and the Ben Roman Division for higher handicap players.
Ciel McLauren from Savannah, Georgia, a former USGA senior champion, matched her age of 80 in the Ben Roman Division.
Harder Hall Golf Club, Sebring, Florida.
Leading first-round scores (Par 72)
69 Stacy Lewis (Texas).
70 Stephanie Godare (Texas).
71 Michelle Jarman (North Carolina).
72 Alina Lee (Georgia), Dawn Woodard (Tennessee).
73 Haley Brown (Texas), Kelly Fuchik (Oklahoma), Lauren Hunt (South Carolina).
Other scores:
76 Vicki Thomas (Carmarthen).
83 Carol S Thompson (Pennysylvania).
89 Sarah Carty (The Island, Dublin).

R&A Press Release

The R&A has announced a series of grants aimed at supporting the development of golf, particularly at grassroots level, around the world.
Countries in receipt of grants include India, Malawi and Swaziland where R&A funding will ensure that international events and initiatives continue to reinforce the growth in the game already taking place in Africa and Asia.
Duncan Weir, The R&A’s Director of Golf Development said: "It is our long term aim to grow the game on a worldwide basis and this latest list of grants underlines our commitment to doing just that. We are fortunate that the annual surplus from The Open Championship enables us to distribute funds widely and we know that this can only have a positive effect on the aspirations of players in those countries where golf is still in its infancy."

  • Elmwood College - China-Scotland Partnership - £400,000 over three years to continue education programme first funded in 2000.
  • European Golf Association - £20,000 towards the 2006 European Young Masters being played in Austria in July.
  • Faldo Series - £20,000 towards existing European activities and £60,000 towards the expansion of its work in Asia.
  • Golf Foundation - £500,000 towards junior development work in England, Scotland and Wales.
  • Golfing Union of Ireland - £50,000 towards new academy and public driving range at Carton House outside Dublin.
  • Indian Golf Union - £25,000 towards ongoing development programme.
  • Ladies Golf Union - 2006 Curtis Cup in Oregon, USA - £35,000 towards GB&I team costs.
    2007 Vagliano Trophy at St Andrews Bay - £15,000 towards match costs.
    2008 Curtis Cup at St Andrews (Old Course) - Up to £150,000 towards match costs.
  • Malawi Golf Union - £10,000 towards the 2006 All Africa Junior Championship.
  • New Zealand Golf Association - £25,000 towards the 2006 Bonallack Trophy being played at Auckland GC in April. This is a biennial men’s amateur international match played between Europe and the Asia-Pacific which started in 1998.
  • Royal Spanish Golf Federation - £16,000 towards the 2006 European Youths’ Team Championship being played at La Canada in July.
  • Scottish Golf Union - £15,000 towards the 2007 European Men’s Amateur Team Championship being played at Western Gailes, Ayrshire.
  • Swaziland Golf Union - £28,000 towards the 2006 Zone VI event. This is an annual men’s amateur international team championship involving countries from southern and eastern Africa.
    In addition, Swaziland will receive £7,000 towards the purchase of a new vehicle to assist with its junior development programme.
  • £150,000 will be spent on the purchase and distribution of reconditioned greenkeeping machinery. In 2005, similar equipment was sent to the Falkland Islands, Iceland, Kenya, Namibia, South Africa, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
  • 1,000 sets of TaylorMade Kids’ Clubs will be distributed overseas. In 2005, a similar number went to Argentina, Bolivia, Colombia, El Salvador, Ghana, Guatemala, India, Kenya, Morocco, Peru, Poland, Romania, Russia, Swaziland, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Wednesday 4th January 2006

Glasgow’s Barry Hume was best placed of the Scots competing in the Asian Qualifying School Stage 1’s four events in wet conditions at Johor Bahru in Malaysia.
Former Scottish amateur champion Hume shared the lead on six-under-par 66 at the Allamanda course at Palm Resort Golf & Country Club.
Neil Douglas is in joint 13th place with a par 72 over the Village course at Tanjong Puteri G&CC. At the same venue Murray Urquhart from Inverness is sharing 23rd place after a 74.
The South Wales-based Doherty brothers, Paul and Jack are on 71 and 73 respectively at the Straits course, Tanjong Puteri. Paul is sharing 22nd place and Jack is joint 32nd behind the trio sharing the lead on six-under 66. They include Englishman Ian Parnaby.
Lee Rhind from Uphall is tied for 26th place on 73 at the Cempaka course, Palm Resort G&CC. Two Koreans share the lead here on 67.
Only the leading 14 and ties after 72 holes at each of the four venues will go forward to join the 158 exempt players in the Final Stage at Palm Resort next week. A total of 40 Asian Tour cards are up for grabs.

The Orange Blossom Tour - the four-event circuit for female amateurs - in Florida tees off today with the Harder Hall Invitational at Harder Hall Golf Club, Sebring.
The capacity field of 132 includes two European players - former Curtis Cup player and many times Welsh women's champion, Vicki Thomas, and Sarah Carty from Dublin.
Vicki, who passed her 50th birthday in 2005, is the reigning Welsh senior champion.
She has played in this event before but no European name appears on the roll of winners since it began in 1956.
Carol Thompson, the record-setting United States Curtis Cup player, is now the chairman of the organising committee. She pulled off a hat-trick of wins in the "Harder Hall" between 1990 and 1992.
The list contains many other Curtis Cup players down through the years.
Solheim Cup player Natalie Gulbis won the title in 2001 and Morgan Pressel, who will be making her pro debut on the LPGA Tour this year, won the "Harder Hall" last year.
There is no cut in the 72-hole event. The entry fee of $225 entitles all the competitors to play a practice round and all four rounds of the tournament and enjoy the social programme.
The Orange Blossom Tour moves on next week to the South Atlantic Ladies Amateur Championship - more often referred to as the "Sally" - at Oceanside Country Club, Ormond Beach (January 11-14).
That is followed by the Doherty/Jones Challenge Cup at Coral Ridge Country Cup, Fort Lauderdale (January 16-21) and finally the Women's International Four-ball tournament at Orangebrook Country Club at Hollywood, Florida.
We hope to provide a daily service of scores and results from each of the four venues.

Sunday 1st January 2006

Annika Sorenstam has been voted Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year for the third year in a row. The last golfer to achieve the hat-trick in this prestigious annual poll was Babe Zaharias in 1945-46-47.
"I am flattered and honoured to have been chosen by so many different editors," said the 35-year-old Swede who was born in Stockholm and lives at Incline Village, Lake Tahoe, Nevada when she is not gracing the fairways of the world.
Annika had 10 LPGA Tour wins in 2005. No other player on the tour had more than two wins. She shot under par in 74% of her competititve rounds.
At her rate of success, Miss Sorenstam - she divorced her husband of eight years in 2005 - will be remove Kathy Whitworth's LPGA career  total of 88 wins from the record book within the next three seasons.
Annika currently has 66 victories to her credit. 
Annika received 47 of the 81 votes cast by AP newspaper and broadcast members. Runner-up, with 17 votes, was Danica Patrick, a racing driver whose fourth place finish in the Indianapolis 500 was the best ever achieved by a female. Michele Wie received four votes.
Cyclist Lance Armstrong was voted AP Male Athlete of the Year for the fourth year in succession.
***Babe Zaharias - born Mildred Didricksen, the daughter of two Norwegian immigrants, at Port Arthur, Texas in June 1914 - died of cancer at the age of 42 in September 1956. She is generally regarded as the greatest all-round female athlete the world has seen. Nicknamed "Babe" after hitting five home runs in one baseball game - one of the many sports in which she excelled - she won gold medals in the 80 metres hurdles and javelin and also a silver in the high jump (clearing the same height as the winner) as an 18-year-old at the 1932 Olympics at Los Angeles.
She took up golf in 1935 at the age of 21 and won 82 tournaments as an amateur and professional over the next 20 years. She married professional wrestler George Zaharias in 1938.
Babe Zaharias won the US women's amateur championship in 1946 and the British women's amateur championship at Gullane in 1947. Then she turned professional and won the US Women's Open in 1948, 1950 and 1954. She helped to found the LPGA Tour.

December 2005 Archive


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