England international Gemma Clews has launched her season by completing a hat trick of wins in the Delamere Comboy Scratch Trophy.
The competition is special to Clews because it’s played at her home course, Delamere Forest, Cheshire, and because it remembers Carol Comboy, who was a member of the club for 55 years, an outstanding county player, a Curtis Cup captain and president of the former English Ladies’ Golf Association, the LGU and of Cheshire.
“I definitely like to win this one,” said the 21-year-old. “It means a lot because it’s at Delamere and because Carol did so much for golf.”
So far, Clews’s name is the only one on the trophy, having won it since the inaugural event in 2013. That year, she shot five-under in the first round but still had to end her second round birdie, eagle, to win on countback.
Last year, she won by a stroke when bad weather reduced the competition to 18 holes. This year, she had to see off a challenge from fellow international Hollie Muse (West Lancashire) but she kept her firm grip on the trophy with a 36-hole score of two-under par – and a three shot winning margin.
Once again, the weather was challenging. “It was really tough, it was very windy then we had hail and rain – and a stop for thunder and lightning. The weather really tried to do us again, but we managed to get finished,” said Clews.
Both she and Muse were tied with level par scores of 73 after the morning round and they both staged a charge in the afternoon round, with Clews reaching the 11th tee in five-under and Muse in one-under.
Clews had six birdies in the first 10 holes but her run came to an end on the 11th where her ball plugged in a bunker. She bogeyed three consecutive holes, before getting back on track and returning a second round score of two-under 71. Muse’s challenge faded on the 15th where she had a double bogey but she came back well to finish with a birdie.
Third place was taken by 15-year-old Ebonie Lewis (Bristol & Clifton) from England Golf’s South West regional U16 girls’ squad. She had scores of 74, 76.
Caption: Gemma Clews (left) is pictured receiving the trophy.