Cath Rawthore and Stephen East are England’s top senior golfers – for the second time.
Rawthore, from Sale in Cheshire, and East, from Wike Ridge in Yorkshire, have topped the England Golf Senior Orders of Merit for 2016. They were both also winners in 2014.
There are many similarities between their latest golfing achievements. Rawthore is the English senior women’s amateur champion, while East holds the Scottish senior men’s title. They are both senior internationals and helped their teams to victory in their respective Home Internationals and to bronze medals in the European championships.
Rawthore laid the foundations of her Order of Merit success with a dramatic win in the senior women’s amateur when, having trailed throughout the final, she triumphed on the 21st hole. The circumstances of the win, coupled with adverse weather conditions, “made it all the more special” and completed her set of senior titles, having won the British and English stroke play championships in previous years.
She commented: “Winning the Order of Merit is very special, particularly when you look at the calibre of the ladies involved in the running.”
Rawthore is part of England’s successful senior women’s team and she added: “I feel lucky and honoured to have represented England for the last four years and although it is a competitive environment, it is very friendly and a lot of fun.
“To continue to do so in 2017 will require being in form as soon as the season starts and I will be trying my very best over the winter to do just that.”
Stephen East’s victory in the Scottish senior championship was also an exciting affair as he played the final 10 holes in five-under par to speed past his rivals. “To win is always satisfying, but to go up there and win was special,” said East, who was also runner-up in the Welsh championship.
The Senior Home Internationals, where he scored 5.5 points from six games, was another of his highlights. “Winning the Home Internationals was a great thrill,” said East. “It was a wonderful team effort which turned out to be a dominant performance.”
His verdict on the year? “Having missed two counting events, I was delighted at topping the order of merit, it’s most satisfying and one of the highlights of my year.
“Looking to 2017, I’m excited about representing Wike Ridge Golf Club. My goals are simple, to enjoy my golf and keep playing and competing at the highest level possible, playing as many championships as possible.”
Final leading placings:
1 Cath Rawthore (Sale, Cheshire) 75097.170
2 Jackie Foster (Bishops Stortford, Hertfordshire) 71646.500
3 Karen Jobling (Richmond, Yorkshire) 47894.000
4 Julie Brown (Trentham, Staffordshire) 43660.193
5 Katherine Russell (Royal Ashdown Forest, Sussex) 34420.625
1 Stephen East (Wike Ridge, Yorkshire) 65100.333 pts
2 David Niven (Newbury & Crookham, BB&O) 57833.000
3 Richard Latham (Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire) 43422.500
4 David Nelson (Northenden, Cheshire) 38326.125
5 Alan Mew (Stoneham, Hampshire) 36551.893
Image copyright Leaderboard Photography