Suffolk’s Alice Barlow was today crowned Welsh Women’s Open Stroke Play champion after a four-shot victory at Southerndown Golf Club.
The 23-year-old led the 54-hole event from start to finish and edged out Scotland’s Chloe Goadby and Australia’s Abbie Teasdale who shared second spot on one under the card.
Two members of the England girls’ squad – West Hill’s Ellen Yates and Lottie Woad from Farnham – finished fourth and fifth respectively.
Woad put up a stout defence of the title she won last year at Newport – her final five under par round of 69 was the lowest score of the week.
The glory, though, belonged to Barlow on a cold and damp day in south Wales.
“It’s amazing, I’m speechless really,” admitted Barlow. “I just played solid golf and, step by step, took it one shot at a time.
“I wasn’t playing amazingly coming into the back nine. I thought I could get a few birdies and still be in there but I didn’t know how close it was.”
Barlow – five times the Suffolk county champion – carded rounds of 70, 74 and 73 for a closing total of five under par and the biggest win of her amateur career.
After sleeping on a lead, Barlow came out the traps quickly to birdie the second and sixth holes and stretch her advantage.
However, bogeys at the seventh, 10th and 11th threatened to derail her bid for the title with Goadby and Teasdale both getting to within one shot of the English golfer on the back nine.
Barlow then dug deep to notch birdies on the 13th and 16th holes and put paid to the hopes of the chasing pack to take the trophy.
There was further success for England in the team event.
The trio of Yates, Woad and Olivia Lee (pictured above) took the honours for England ahead of their home nation and international rivals.
Photography credit: Wales Golf/Leaderboard