Cath is a splash hit in championship defence

DEFENDING champion Cath Rawthore produced a miracle shot to share the lead after the first round of the English Senior Women’s Strokeplay at Broadstone in Dorset.

 ON TARGET: Cath Rawthore. Image Leaderboard Photography

ON TARGET: Cath Rawthore. Image Leaderboard Photography

The Sale ace skimmed a ball across the surface of the water in front of the third green and walked off the hole with a par. “It was a corker,” she laughed, after returning a two-over 74 to catch fellow international Julie Brown.

“I’d hit a wayward drive into deep grass and I thought about chipping out, but that would have been a shot gone. So I had a go and the ball came shooting out, went into the water and went bump, bump on to the green.

She added: “I thought ‘Here we go!’ But my luck ran out on the seventh where I had a double bogey.”

However, she soon put that behind her and played the remaining holes in two-under for a satisfactory start to her defence.

“I’m pleased,” said Rawthore, who is also the British senior champion. “It’s nice to be there or thereabouts after day one and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It’s a fabulous course and the greens are lovely – but tricky.”

Brown, the 2014 English senior women’s champion from Trentham, was the first to set the target on a warm, sunny day. She played steadily throughout the round, with just one three-putt, and said: “I felt I could have been one shot better but I’m not unhappy, it was a good first round.”

In contrast to Rawthore, she made short work of the par five seventh, hitting the green in two to set up a birdie. “I really went for it!” she said.

Delamere Forest’s  past champion Sue Dye and Prestbury’s Gillian Mellor are also in contention.

After today’s second round the field will be cut to the leading 36 players and ties who will play the final round tomorrow.


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