Close call for the defending champion

Julie Brown

Julie Brown, the defending English senior women’s champion, held on to her hopes of a title double by the skin of her teeth today.

The number one seed eased through her first round match at Woodhall Spa, but she faced a battle royal in the quarter-finals before finally winning through on the 19th.

Her opponent, Jackie Foster of Hertfordshire, was five up after 12 and Brown had to stage a remarkable fightback to secure her place in the semi-finals.

“I just called on all my knowledge and just stuck in there,” said Brown, who was a winner on the Ladies European Tour before reverting to amateur status (Image © Leaderboard Photography).

“I just kept plodding along and thought that if I kept hitting fairways and greens I might put some pressure on.”

She won the 13th and 14th, halved the 15th, and then won the next three holes to get the match back to all square on the last. A textbook par on the 19th brought her back from the brink and into the semi-final, where she will meet Jo Galway of Sussex.

Brown, from Staffordshire, is the only senior international left in the field after a day of surprises which saw top players take a tumble.

Galway played her part. She beat former champion Janet Melville this morning and in the afternoon defeated Joan Pullen, a fellow Sussex player. Pullen was the giant-killer of the first round, beating British senior champion Cath Rawthore 3/2.

Galway, a former Sussex champion who is playing this event for only the second time, said: “Tomorrow I shall go out and play my golf, just get on with it – and hope I can do the same as today!”

Leicestershire’s Helen Lowe notched up two impressive wins today. She beat former champion Caroline Berry of Cheshire in the first round and then went past Lulu Housman, a senior international from Middlesex.

Derbyshire’s Lindsey Shaw, the number two seed, edged through her morning match against Karen Jobling of Yorkshire, winning with a birdie on the 18th. But she got the measure of the greens in the afternoon and defeated yet another international, Chris Quinn of Hampshire.

Shaw remarked: “Chris is a very good player, but I was just playing well today. I was three up at the turn and I kept my nose ahead. I’m absolutely delighted and tomorrow I’m just going to keep on trucking!”

The semi-finals are: Julie Brown (Trentham) v Jo Galway (Pycombe); Lindsey Shaw (Chevin) v Helen Lowe (Scraptoft)

Please click here for full scores from the championship match play and the second flight