Victory at St Annes Old Links sees title retained
ENGLAND have won the Girls' Home International title once again, claiming the Stroyan Cup for an incredible sixth year in a row.
They continued their extraordinary sequence of success at St Annes Old Links in Lancashire, despite a final day defeat by Ireland.
Scotland, the only team which could have caught them, also lost on the last day to Wales, meaning England’s earlier wins over Wales and Scotland proved to be good enough to retain the title.
“A win is always good,” noted England team captain Chris Pascall.
“Only two of the girls had played Home Internationals before so it's a very good result and they really did very well.”
Gabriella Cowley of Brocket Hall and Rotherham’s Olivia Winning both featured in last year's successful side. This year's team was completed by Annabel Dimmock (Wentworth), Sammy Fuller (Roehampton), Alice Hewson (Berkhamsted), Sophie Keech (Parkstone), Sophie Lamb (Clitheroe) and Sophie Madden (West Essex).
After opening with a comfortable 7-2 win over Wales, the English girls fought back from a 2½-½ early deficit to beat Scotland 5½-3½ and put themselves in pole position to retain their title once again.
Against Ireland, they were level-pegging after the morning foursomes with one and a half points apiece. Cowley and Lamb beat Chloe Weir and Julie McCarthy 2&1, with keech and Hewson getting a half-point against Olivia Mehaffey and Mary Doyle.
Mehaffey then dispatched of Cowley 6&4 in the opening match of the singles, with Dimmock also losing 4&3 to Doyle.
Hewson got England back on track with a 4&2 win over Niamh McSherry before Fuller beat Shannon Burke 2&1.
That left the match hanging in the balance with two matches still to be completed and, unfortunately for England, Winning went down by two holes to Niamh Ward, before
Lamb could manage no better than a halved match with Ariana Coyle Diez, as Ireland ran out narrow 5-4 winners.
As it turned out, though, the result didn’t affect England, as Scotland went down at the hands of Wales to finish in last place overall.
Ireland and Wales both finished with the week with one and a half points points each. On a countback of individual games won, Ireland had the edge (13½ to 11½) and that won them the Swansea Spoon as runners-up.
© Cal Carson Golf Agency