Final day win over Wales seals a third successive Home Internationals title for Ratcliffe’s charges
By ECG Newsdesk
England won the Women’s Home Internationals for the third year in a row with a comprehensive 7-2 victory over the hosts, Wales, on the final day of this year’s championship at Conwy Golf Club.
They added it to a halved result with Ireland on the opening day and a 6-3 win over Scotland. The win completed a rich vein of form for the English women’s side following their triumph earlier in the summer in the European Women’s Team Championship.
This was also England’s fifth win in the Home Internationals in the last six years and it was achieved in difficult weather conditions, which included very strong winds and heavy showers.
Team captain Elaine Ratcliffe commented: “I can’t say enough times that I saw some wonderful golf this week in tough conditions. I am very proud of how the girls always battled and were patient out there.”
The series began against Ireland, described by Ratcliffe, as ‘tough opposition who, in the conditions, played some amazing golf and whose short game was second to none in the foursomes’.
England managed just one halved result from the three foursomes, but dominated the singles, winning four of the six games to halve the match. “We went out and played our hearts out to halve,” said Ratcliffe.
On the second day, against Scotland, the team again struggled in the foursomes, winning just one point but, once again, they were superb in the singles, winning five of the six games.
In the final match against Wales, Ratcliffe mixed up two of the foursomes pairings. It proved to be a masterstroke, with the team winning all three games.
Wales came out for the singles in determined mood and, in the early stages, the match was close. However, Meghan MacLaren and Gemma Clews drew away from their opponents to record big wins, 6&5 and 4&3 respectively, while Sammie Giles and Emma Allen worked steadily towards identical winning scorelines of 2&1 to complete the victory.
During the series, Lizzie Prior celebrated her 19th birthday and Ratcliffe added: “We had a great week, some lovely ice cream in Conwy, a birthday cake for Lizzie and to top it off we won the Home Internationals!”
Meanwhile, England finished the Girls’ Home Internationals – played simultaneously at Conwy – with a 6½-2½ win over Wales. Earlier, they had halved with Ireland and lost 6-3 to Scotland. The results halted their winning run in the championship, which had lasted for eight years, and the 2016 title went to Ireland for the first time ever.
England saved their best for last. In the final day’s foursomes, they won two foursomes, thanks to Lily May Humphreys and Amelia Williamson, and to Louisa Brunt and SharnaDutrieux. In the singles, the points were scored by Humphreys, Williamson, Brunt and Annabell Fuller, with a half from Dutrieux.
Photo © LGU