Leicestershire: Ladies County Championship

Leicestershire county champion Jo Morris

Jo ends 18-year wait for fourth county crown

LEICESTERSHIRE: Monday, May 17th

There was an all Willesley Park final in the Leicestershire and Rutland Ladies County Championship final where experience won the day over youth at Longcliffe GC.

And the victory was especially satisfying for new champion Jo Morris because she last won the event 18 years ago. In a 36-hole-showdown with 15-year-old Eleanor Parkinson, she claimed her fourth county title 8&7.

The final capped a very busy couple of days for the highly impressive teenager, who reached the final at the seventh extra hole against England Seniors international Helen Lowe.

Eleanor, who only turned 15 the week before, could not repeat her heroics the following day as Jo forged into a five-hole lead at halfway, taking control of the match by winning eight, nine and ten.

The youngster gave herself hope by winning holes five and six in the afternoon but her opponent came straight back and took the next four before the 11th was halved, sealing the win for Jo, who first won the event in 1997. Her other two victories came in 1999 and 2003.

The two finalists also led the way at the 36-hole strokeplay qualifying tournament from the previous weekend with Jo registering the stand-out score of the day – a level par 71.

The plate event – for those finishing outside the top eight in the strokeplay qualifying – was won by Ellie York (Hinckley). She beat Suzanne Pretty (Longcliffe) 2up to win the Russell Trophy.

Top 10 strokeplay finishers
1) Joanne Morris (Willesley Park) 79, 71, 150 (Cathy Stephens Trophy winner)
2) Eleanor Parkinson (Willesley Park) 75, 79, 154
3) Caz Parkes-Walley (Lutterworth) 75, 80, 155
4) Helen Lowe (Scraptoft) 77, 78, 155
5) Tracy Bourne (Willesley Park 79, 81, 160
6) Gemma Parkes-Walley (Lutterworth) 81, 80, 161
7) Eleanor Bailey (Kirkby Muxloe) 80, 82, 162
8) Holly Waterfield (Lutterworth) 82, 81, 163
9) Diana Miller (Lingdale) 82, 81, 163
10) Sarah Haslum (Longcliffe) 83, 81, 164
Knockout stages – quarter-finals
Morris beat Haslum 2&1
Bailey beat Bourne 1 hole
Parkinson beat Miller 4&3
Lowe beat Waterfield 1 hole
Morris beat Bailey 4&2
Parkinson beat Lowe at the 25th
Morris beat Parkinson 8&7
For all the scores from the competition click here
Russell Trophy winner Ellie York (Hinckley GC)