Tuesday 12 December 2017

Meadow flies flag for Irish after Maguire twins ousted

Stephanie Meadow is the lone Irishwoman standing at the Ladies British Open Amateur Championship at Royal Portrush after the Maguire twins and Danielle McVeigh made first-round exits yesterday morning.

On a bad day for the host nation, Bangor's Victoria Bradshaw and County Louth's Deirdre Smith -- who beat Lisa Maguire on the 18th -- were the only other Irish girl to reach the second round, but they were both beaten in the afternoon.

Leona Maguire lost out to France's Perrine Delacour on the second extra hole.

Meadow, though, toppled the leading qualifier from the stroke-play stages -- Spanish champion Camilla Hedberg -- at the 19th to march into the third round.

Earlier, the 19-year-old Royal Portrush star, ranked No 15 in the world, beat France's Laure Castelain (two-up).

USA-based Meadow admitted she was lucky to survive that first-round match.

"I didn't play. I bogeyed four holes in a row at one stage and was two down with six or seven holes to play," she said. "But I was able to get back on level terms and then win on the 18th green."

But her clash with Hedberg was of a far higher calibre.

"It certainly was a high-quality game. I had five birdies and one bogey, and Camilla had an an eagle and four birdies, so it was some match," she said.

Sixteen-year-old Lauren Taylor from Woburn had the greatest day of her golfing life. First she beat Irish champion and Curtis Cup player McVeigh (Royal Co Down) 2&1 -- and then she claimed the notable scalp of world No 2 Cecilia Cho, a 16-year-old from New Zealand who had been No 1 until being overtaken by fellow Kiwi Lydia Ko.

Ko herself lost to defending champion Kelly Tidy (Royal Birkdale).

Taylor now plays experienced German international Thea Hoffmeister, who was one down to Bradshaw at the turn but overhauled the Bangor player down the back nine to win 2&1.

Irish Independent

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