Victory in Ireland completes second successive ‘nationals’ sweep
ENGLAND won a tight match against Ireland 5-3 to successfully retain the Senior Women’s Home Internationals and complete a second successive national clean sweep. English senior amateur champion Helen Lowe won the 18th and her game to seal the victory for the team at Elm Park Golf Club in Ireland.
It was the team’s ninth win since the championship began in 2003 and means England have won the complete set of girls’, women’s and senior Home Internationals for the second year in succession.
Captain Pat Wrightson, who earlier in the season steered the team to a European silver medal, said: “It was an excellent effort by the team and it’s been a pleasure to be their captain.”
England were put on the back foot on the first day of the tournament when they were held to a draw by Wales. They came straight back with a convincing win on the second day against Scotland, but Ireland, the European bronze medallists, had opened with two good wins.
It meant that England had to win the final day’s title decider, while Ireland - champions in 2012 and 2013 - would take the trophy with a win or a halved result.
England set out with a strong foursomes performance, winning the top two matches. Caroline Berry and Lulu Housman completed a perfect foursomes record with three wins from three outings and, like Julie Brown and Helen Lowe, were never behind in their game.
In the singles, Cath Rawthore won the first two holes and stayed ahead for her game, eventually winning 4&3. Lindsey Shaw, by contrast, lost the first but quickly righted matters to claim a hard-fought 2&1 victory.
Helen Lowe’s match was always tight and there was never more than a hole in it. The players were all square after the 13th, with the next four holes all halved, but Lowe broke the deadlock with a win on the 18th to grab her point and confirm the team’s victory.
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