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Heartbreak for Ulster pair as home hopes are extinguished at Ardglass event

 

By Paul Kelly

Kirkistown's Beth Coulter and Lurgan's Annabel Wilson exited the Girls' British Amateur Championship at Ardglass yesterday afternoon, ending Ireland's final hopes of home success.

Hannah Darling, the Girls' Under-16 Open champion, won three holes from the 10th as the 15-year old turned around her tie with Wilson, prevailing on the 18th.

"The four-foot putt on the last to win was nerve-wracking but I stroked it like I do in practice, went through my routine and it was a great feeling to hole it," said Darling.

"I wasn't happy in the morning so came out in the afternoon and played the course rather than my opponent. I focused on making pars. Hopefully I can go all the way now, although you never know as it's matchplay after all."

The last Irish player standing, Coulter, was then ousted in the final match of the day, defeated by Huddersfield's Charlotte Heath 4&3.

Italy's Emilie Alba Paltrinieri produced some match play heroics in her quest for another Girls' British Amateur Championship title. Paltrinieri, the 2016 champion at Royal St David's was four-down after six holes of her first round meeting with Danielle Modder from the Netherlands before storming back for a one-hole win.

The 16-year-old from Milan, also a Junior Ryder Cup player in 2016 at Interlachen, then moved into the last-16 after a 6&5 triumph over India's Anika Varma.

On another windy day on the spectacular Ardglass links, England's Euphemie Rhodes also achieved an impressive day's work. Having only just scraped through stroke play qualifying on the cut mark, the 16-year old saw off the challenge of team-mate and fellow Girls Home Internationals winner Caitlin Whitehead in a tight 2&1 victory.

Earlier, Rhodes accounted for a home favourite, Woodstock's Aine Donegan, as the Irish challenge ended in the last-32.

For the leading strokeplay qualifier there was disappointment as Ingrid Lindblad lost an all-Swedish battle with Kajsa Arwefjall at the last in round one, but second-placed Mathilde Claisse from France battled to a one-hole success over England's Martha Lewis to reach the last-16 this morning.

Belfast Telegraph

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