England Golf: Girls Champion of Champions

ALL SMILES: England Girls Champion of Champions Amy Knotts (Chigwell)

Inspired Amy plots her way to national glory

EG: Monday, Sept 6th

FORMAT: 36-hole strokeplay

Any time you only find yourself in a bunker twice across two rounds on the Bracken course at Woodhall Spa you are probably going to have a very good day and that’s exactly what happened to Essex’s Amy Knotts at the Girls County Champion of Champions event.

The 15-year-old Chigwell player found sand with her drive and then a green-side trap in opening with a double bogey but managed to go bunker-free for the remaining 35 holes on her way to a five-shot success. A pair of 73s left her well clear of Durham’s Faye Wheatley (Whickham).

The East of England Girls champion was making her first appearence in the event and she was delighted with the way she plotted her way around in claiming her first national title.

“It was very satisfying to play two really good rounds and I managed to follow the plan,” said Amy.

“I drove the ball really well and holed some really good putts. Overall my short game was strong too.”

Having reached the fifth tee three over, a stunning par save provied the impetus for an excellent opening round. A wayward tee shot on the par three was compounded by a perilous chip back and Amy failed to find the putting surface in two but chipped in for a par with her ball perilously close to the hazard.

She followed it up with a 20-foot birdie putt at the next and reached the turn in two over par.

A bogey at ten failed to knock her off her stride as she birdied the next, firing her 6 iron at the par three to four feet.

At the par five 14th she was just short in two and got up and down for a four and it got even better for the Essex golfer as she holed out from 15 feet at the 16th for her second two of the round.

At halfway she was three clear of the Durham teenager with Salysa Mason (Sussex) and Anna Molloy (Hertfordshire) a shot further back.

In the afternoon she again reached the turn in two over par but again 11 proved to be a real friend. Another four-foot birdie putt was drained – this time from the other side of the pin – and she followed it up with a brilliant three at the devilish par four 12th. Amy decided against laying up and navigated her way between the sand and the brook to put her approach pin high and she sank the 20-foot birdie putt.

There would be a bogey at 15 but she did not let the momentum drop, typified by two excellent up-and-down pars at the final two holes.

Leading scores (par 72)
1) Amy Knotts (Essex) 73, 73, 146 (+2)
2) Faye Wheatley (Durham) 76, 75, 151 (+7)
3) Salysa Mason (Sussex) 77, 76, 153 (+9)
4) Anna Molloy (Hertfordshire) 77, 77, 154 (+10)
5) Ellena Slater (Kent) 79, 75, 154 (+10)
6) Ellise Rymer (Lincolnshire)  80, 76, 156 (+12)
7) Shivani Karthikeyan (Northants) 82, 75, 157 (+13)
8) Harriet Lockley (Somerset) 78, 79, 157, (+13)
9) Olivia Williams (Worcs & Hereford) 80, 77, 157 (+13)
10) Gemma Burgess (Hampshire) 80, 77, 157 (+13)
For all the scores click here