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England's Lauren Taylor, 16, wins British championship
12th June 2011

England 16-year-old Lauren Taylor became one of the youngest-ever winners of the women's British amateur championship when she swept to the title at Royal Portrush, Northern Ireland, with a 6/5 win over Alexandra Bonetti of France.

Lauren Taylor (Image Calcarson Golf Agency & EWGA)

It capped a superb week for Lauren, an England girl international, who played brilliantly throughout the tournament and then produced an outstanding performance in the final against Bonetti, 17, who won the British girls' championship last August.

Lauren produced six birdies in beating her French opponent, having come up with four birdies to get through at the 20th in the morning semi-final against defending champion Kelly Tidy (Royal Birkdale).

"I told my dad that we were both going to relax this week because I usually try too hard in the big championships and let myself down. I play my best golf when I am stress free... and dad was more laid back than he has ever been as my caddie," said Lauren.

"That helped me a lot. I was nervous a lot of times, especially in the closing stages against Kelly, but I tried not to let it affect my game," said Lauren, who lives in Rugby. Her earlier "victims" in arguably the strongest field ever to contest the Ladies Golf Union's amateur flagship event included the world number 2, Cecilia Cho from New Zealand.

Lauren started the final in the same way she had ended her semi-final - with a birdie and she raced away from her opponent, winning five of the first six holes.

The seventh was halved in birdie fours, the eighth in par fours and the ninth in birdie fours, making Lauren five up at the turn. She moved further ahead when she won the long 10th with a birdie but then bogeyed the 11th, for her only loss of hole in the match.

Lauren edged closer to a memorable triumph when she got up and down in two to salvage a half on the 12th, thanks to an exquisite pitch close to the cup from an awkward lie through the back of the green.

And she ended the final in style by chipping into the hole from off the green for a birdie three on the 13th - her sixth of the round - to win the British title by 6 and 5.

In the all-England semi-final against Kelly Tidy, Lauren was ahead for most of the match, dropping behind on only one occasion when she lost the 10th.  She immediately won the 11th to get back on level terms before moving ahead again on the 12th.

Lauren was two up after 16 but Kelly was not prepared to let her title go without  a fight to the last. She kept her hopes alive with a birdie on the long 17th and won the par five 18th with a par, where Lauren's three-footer for the match slid by the hole. They halved the 19th in par before Lauren birdied the 20th to take her place in the final.

Image from Calcarson Golf Agency




 









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