‘It feels good to win,’ said the new 22-year-old champion
By Chris Johnston
Ailsa Summers was crowned Scottish Women’s Amateur champion after a marathon week culminated in a 2&1 final victory over Gabrielle Macdonald.
Having lost to her former university teammate Macdonald in the same event in 2014, Summers exacted a measure of revenge in what proved to be a tight 18-hole final at West Kilbride Golf Club.
“It feel good,” said Summers, who is a member of Carnoustie Ladies. “It’s a bit of a long week, a rollercoaster of emotions and a more gruelling test than strokeplay.
“The important thing for me was to get off to a good start and I managed to do that. I lost to Gabrielle on her way to winning in 2014 and she birdied the first three holes, so I was wary of that happening again.”
Summers need not have worried, though, as she capitalised on early errors from Macdonald to move two up after three holes. She maintained that two-hole advantage through to the turn, but Macdonald had clawed back to level by the 12th.
In a match where the momentum was swinging back and forward, it was Summers who would grab the initiative once more at the 16th before casting the winning blow at the 17th.
“I always knew it was going to be close and towards the end of the front-nine Gabrielle was really starting to roll her putts well,” added Summers. “It was just a matter of time before she started knocking them in and she did on 11 and 12.
“She really had the momentum at that point, but I drew on the experience of playing the last six holes well in previous rounds and kept that in my mind.
“I got a massive break on 17. I was very close to being in a bush but ended up having a swing. It’s those little things that can help you win.”
Macdonald, meanwhile, conceded she wasn’t on top form throughout the match.
She said: “I didn’t play my best, but just kept trying to keep going and got it back to square after 12 when I holed a good putt. But I made a few mistakes and Ailsa played well, so I can’t be too disappointed. I’m just annoyed I didn’t quite play my best, but it has been a good week.”
Summers was due to be part of Scotland’s Women’s European Amateur Team Championship heading to Iceland later this year, but she has been unable to take up her place in the squad due to work commitments.
Following the event, the Angus County player revealed she is planning to stay an amateur for at least another year, and currently has no plan in place to turn professional.
All photos © Derek McCabe