Leading amateurs target LETAS Challenge

Sophie lamb

Fifteen leading English amateurs will tee up alongside Ladies European Tour hopefuls next week when the WPGA International Challenge is played at Stoke by Nayland Golf Club, near Colchester.

They include Meghan MacLaren, who scored the winning point for GB&I at this year’s Curtis Cup match. Also in the field is Olivia Winning who, with MacLaren, helped make England the 2016 European team champions. British stroke play champion Sophie Lamb and 14-year-old Lily May Humphreys – winner of a host of junior titles – are also included.

Rebecca Hembrough, England Golf Women’s Performance Manager, said: “This is a wonderful opportunity for our players and I know they’re really looking forward to it.”

The LET Access Series event, from 6-8 October, is the only one to be staged in the UK and it underlines LETAS’s commitment to providing an important link between elite amateur and professional golf.

Di Barnard, tour director of the LET Access Series said: “Stoke by Nayland Hotel Golf & Spa is a first class venue and the Gainsborough course is a tremendous test of golf.

“We look forward to visiting again this year and welcoming everyone to the tournament. The event receives great support from the PGA and England Golf and is a very important playing opportunity for the players, both for the elite amateurs and the professionals, many of whom are just starting out in their careers

There is a lot at stake because the 54-hole Challenge counts towards the LET Access Series order of merit and the top five players will earn cards on the Ladies European Tour for 2017.

The England amateur players:

Sophie Lamb (Clitheroe, Lancashire) is the British women’s stroke play champion and helped England take fifth place at the World Girls’ Championship (image © Leaderboard Photography).

Georgia Price (Bude and North Cornwall) was runner-up in the English stroke play and third in the British stroke play.

Gemma Clews (Delamere Forest, Cheshire) is an England international and played at the World Team Championship.

Lianna Bailey (Kirby Muxloe, Leicestershire) was fourth in the Welsh stroke play and seventh in the English women’s amateur.

Sammie Giles (St Mellion, Cornwall), has won all the English women’s titles and is currently the amateur champion.

Olivia Winning (Rotherham, Yorkshire) is the Scottish stroke play champion and a member of England’s winning European championship team.

Cloe Frankish (Chart Hills, Kent) is the English girls’ champion and the runner up in the English women’s match play.

Bel Wardle (Prestbury, Cheshire) was the runner-up in the British girls’ championship and was eighth individually when representing England at the World Girls’ Championship.

Ebonie Lewis (Knowle, Gloucestershire) was third in the English women’s stroke play and helped Gloucestershire win English Women’s County Finals.

Georgina Blackman (Chelmsford, Essex) was a semi-finalist in the English women’s matchplay and has had a string of high results in top scratch events.

Meghan MacLaren (Wellingborough, Northamptonshire) holed the winning putt in this year’s Curtis Cup match and helped England win the European team championship.

Lily May Humphreys (Channels, Essex) has won the 2016 English U16 girls’ title, the Fairhaven Trophies, the North of England U16 championship and was third in the European Young Masters.

Bethan Popel (Long Ashton, Gloucestershire) has represented England and helped Gloucestershire win the 2016 Women’s County Finals.

Inci Mehmet (Royal Mid-Surrey) has helped England win women’s and girls’ Home Internationals and was eighth in the 2016 British stroke play

Sharna Dutrieux (Wrotham Heath, Kent) is an England girl international, tied 12th in the British stroke play and had top four finishes in three prestigious scratch events.