The stage is set for the showdown for the English Women’s County Finals with six teams preparing to go head-to-head next week at Waterlooville Golf Club in Hampshire.
They include Norfolk, who will make their first appearance at the final for 42 years when they represent the East region. Staffordshire, from Midlands North, will return after an absence of 15 years.
The other finalists are: Gloucestershire from the South West, Surrey from the South, Buckinghamshire from Midlands South and Yorkshire from the North.
The title of English Women’s County Champions is one of the most sought-after and keenly contested in the calendar and county pride will be fiercely on display during the five-day round robin tournament, which starts on Monday, 12 September.
Yorkshire will be seeking their 12th title, Surrey their 11th and Staffordshire their fifth, while the other three counties are all targeting their first win.
The players will be challenged by the fast greens and tight fairways of Waterlooville’s parkland layout. This will be the first time the club has hosted a national championship and President Stephen Millett said: “The members are very excited that our course has been selected by England Golf and we will be pulling out all the stops to make it a truly memorable occasion.”
Ladies’ captain Allison Bolam added: “This is a great compliment to our club. The prestige of the County Finals is growing every year and it will be thrilling to watch some of the best amateur golfers in the country competing for the title on our fairways – and to see how Waterlooville is meant to be played!”
The competitors include the Yorkshire pair of Curtis Cup player Rochelle Morris and Olivia Winning, the Scottish open stroke play champion who helped England’s women become European team champions this summer.
Two of the youngest players will be Surrey’s Annabell Fuller, 14, and Gloucestershire’s Ffion Tynan, 13. Fuller is a girl international and the winner of the Sir Henry Cooper Junior Masters, while Tynan is the English U14 girls’ champion. Norfolk’s team includes girl international, Amelia Williamson, 16, while Surrey’s Martha Lewis is an U16 international.
Inci Mehmet of Surrey and Bethan Popel of Gloucestershire have both represented the England women’s team while Jo Ashmore of Norfolk has been a senior international.
Buckinghamshire, captained by Phillipa Cook
Georgina Bowers, Megan Dennis, Denise Goodacre, Daisy Kennedy, Thalia Kirby, Alice Kozlowski, Chloe Li, Lucy Matthews, Lizi Sweetnam and Nicole Whitmore.
Gloucestershire, captained by Andra Knight
Becky Gibbs, Alex Giles, Charlie Hiatt, Ali Kelly, Ebonie Lewis, Caley McGinty, Claudia Ovens, Bethan Popel, Alex Saunders and Ffion Tynan.
Norfolk, captained by Tracey Williamson
Ellie Brown, Jasmine Campbell, Jo Herd, Tiff Mills, Shelley Pleasance, Chloe Rowswell, Amy Taylor, Amelia Williamson, Tracey Williamson, Jo Ashmore, Sammy Martin and Megan Mann.
Staffordshire, captained by Julia Gaunt
Emily Coleman, Emily Brennan, Olivia Raybould, Morgan Thomas, Debbie Warren, Jenny Rhodes, Georgie Taylor, Gina Wilkie, Julia Gaunt and Annette Deeley.
Surrey, captained by Alison Taylor
Amber Chana, Tana Churchill, Katie Fewster, Annabell Fuller, Charlotte Griffith, Lauren Horsford, Martha Lewis, Inci Mehmet, Katie Shepherd, Alice Spani-Molella and Nicola Taylor.
Yorkshire, captained by Dawn Clegg
Megan Clarke, Megan Garland, Olivia Hamilton, Hannah Holden, Alison Knowles, Rochelle Morris, Olivia Winning and Melissa Wood.
Order of Play
Each match is composed of three foursomes and six singles. Foursomes start at 8.30 and singles at 12.45. Spectators are very welcome.
Monday 12 September
Buckinghamshire v Gloucestershire
Surrey v Norfolk
Yorkshire v Staffordshire
Tuesday 13 September
Surrey v Yorkshire
Gloucestershire v Norfolk
Staffordshire v Buckinghamshire
Wednesday 14 September
Norfolk v Staffordshire
Buckinghamshire v Yorkshire
Surrey v Gloucestershire
Thursday 15 September
Buckinghamshire v Surrey
Gloucestershire v Staffordshire
Yorkshire v Norfolk
Friday 16 September
Yorkshire v Gloucestershire
Staffordshire v Surrey
Norfolk v Buckinghamshire
Click here for results