Jo scores a club double at par 3 championship

2013 Par 3 Championship winner Jo Matthews

Gloucestershire golfer Jo Matthews completed a double for her club when she won the English Women’s Par 3 Championship at The Warwickshire.

Jo, from Shirehampton Park Golf Club (pictured), followed in the footsteps of fellow member Mary Groves, who took the honours last year.

What’s more, Jo’s success came less than four months after she had a knee replacement operation. She returned to golf only at the beginning of this month – and she’s clearly on form.

The 24-handicapper, who received 12 shots, scored net 54 on The Warwickshire’s Par 3 Castle course. She was two shots clear of a trio of players on 56: Michelle Underwood of Fingle Glen, Devon; Fame Grayson of Styal, Cheshire; and Paula Cowl of Woodbury Park, Devon.

Fame Grayson, meanwhile, combined with her mother and fellow Styal member, Wad, and with Karen Lindsey of Carden Park, Cheshire, to win the team prize.

Jo was one of six Shirehampton Park members who took part in the championship, which combines good competition with a hint of garden party atmosphere, thanks to the Pimms and cake enjoyed by the players.

“It was an unexpectedly pleasurable day!” she said. “One of our ladies won last year and we went back so she could defend her title. I’m sure we’ll try and go next year.”

Jo played very steadily throughout the 18 holes and the highlight was the 6th hole where she chipped in for a birdie two. “It was just one of those days when things go right.”

Jo, who chairs the ladies’ committee at Shirehampton Park, took up golf 15 years ago when she was 50 and decided to retire from squash. Since then she’s had two hip replacements, as well as her knee operation, but has always been back on the golf course as soon as possible.