Samantha Fuller spotted her name on the Rose Ladies Series leaderboard – and promptly chipped in for another birdie.
The professionals were meant to dominate Thursday’s event at Moor Park Golf Club in Hertfordshire, but amateur ace Fuller had other ideas.
Instead of nerves, the 21-year-old showed a new level of confidence and, having holed from off the green at the 14th, found herself just one shot adrift of LET star Meg MacLaren with birdie opportunities ahead.
MacLaren dug deep to fend off the threat from Fuller and carded a score of 69 to eventually win by two shots from the amateur and Liz Young.
But Fuller’s form was a highlight of the day and a real fillip for her as she continues a curtailed season.
“I knew I was playing well going into the event, but I didn’t have any expectations and was just there to have fun,” reflected Fuller after a one under par round of 71.
“I didn’t think I’d be up there contending coming into the final few holes.
“I didn’t realise where I was on the leaderboard until I spotted my name coming down 14 – the next thing I did was chip in!
“It’s hard to describe how I was feeling at that point, but my boyfriend Tom was caddying and did a good job.
“I really enjoyed the whole experience of competing again and this has given me a real boost.
“I had lost a lot of confidence in my game after being ill for a bit so to come into an event like this and finish under par is a great lift.”
Fuller was one of four amateurs in the field for the second of eight Rose Ladies Series events.
The Surrey golfer joined younger sister Annabell, Caley McGinty (pictured above) and Rebecca Earl in representing the amateur game alongside 47 women professionals.
Just as on the first week of the series when Mimi Rhodes showcased the level of the amateur game with a tied seventh finish at Brokenhurst Manor, both Fuller sisters were able to go head-to-head with the pros and move inside the top ten.
With Samantha joint runner-up, Annabell (pictured below) finished in a tie for seventh following a one over par score of 73.
Now both women are looking to kick on and build towards competing in one of England Golf’s flagship events – the English Women’s Amateur Championship at Woodhall Spa from 28 July-1 August.
“I’d only played three events in America prior to coming back home from college in March,” admitted Fuller who is going into her senior year at the University of Nevada in Las Vegas.
“But it was great to be involved in this one and catch up with players who I had known from England squad days.
“Annabell Dimmock and Gabriella Cowley were team-mates and my mum joked that it was good to have the old gang back together again.
“I’m looking to play in the English Women’s Amateur, but I will then probably head back to America as there are quarantine rules in place and I need to be back in time for my senior year starting.
“I’m doing communications and sports studies and while I’d obviously like to give my golf career a go, I would also like to try out sports broadcasting.
“I took part in the promotional video for the Augusta Women’s National event in 2019 and that was a great insight.”
To check out all the scores from Moor Park, click on the full and final leaderboard.
The next event in the Rose Ladies Series takes place on Thursday at the Buckinghamshire Golf Club with another crop of England’s top amateurs due to take their place in the field.
For details on future events, keep up to date via the England Golf Twitter feed.
Photograph credit: Getty Images