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Pride at place at World Junior Girls Championships

​​World Junior Girls Championship, Camelot Golf and Country Club, Ottawa

  • 14 September 2018

​Caption: Annabel Wilson (Lurgan) at the World Amateur Team Championships in Carton House - Cashman Photography

Day 3
It was more of the same for the Irish Girls team competing in the World Junior Girls Championships, with greens proving to be once again fickle and birdies elusive to the Irish girls.

Starting the day in 9th place, it was an optimistic team that teed off at 8am. Sara Byrne hitting the first tee shot of the day. Sadly it was not to be for the Douglas player, who carded another 80, the highlight being a birdie on the tricky 17th. 

Lauren Walsh struck the ball well and despite the frustration of putts slipping by when birdie opportunities were begging, stuck to the task and was finally rewarded with only her second sub par score of the day with a 4  on the difficult Par 5 16th, slotting a 15 footer. A broad smile followed her onto the 17th tee box, where hitting the ball to just the wrong side of the green led to bogey. The 18th showed Lauren its really unfriendly side, where a good shot was rewarded with backspin off the green. Another bogey ensued for a final score of 76.

Annabel Wilson had that look about her that she was in the mood to ‘go low’. One under par for the day after 9, and as she said ‘striking the ball better than any of the last few days’, she suffered frustration and angst as the ball sternly refusing to drop into the hole on a number of birdie opportunities. With only one loose shot in the round, which cost her 2 shots, she carded a 75 (+3).

The team have slipped down one place to 10th, but there is plenty of pride to play for on the last day of play on Friday where they will face England and Spain in their three-balls.

The Italian team had a quieter day on the course but still lead the competition, while Alessia Nobilo continued her impressive run of scores shooting 69 today to place her on -15 for the Championships.
The USA made large gains to narrow the gap at the top of the team  leaderboard to just 1 shot. Its all to play for tomorrow.

Day 2
The World Junior Girls Championships got underway on Tuesday at Camelot Golf Club, Orleans near Ottawa. Playing a length of 6200 yards, with soft conditions,  its a course requiring strategic management in order to approach the pin from exactly the right position in order to garner birdies. Greens are running moderately quick and with dry conditions should speed up for the rest of the week.

Annabel Wilson (Lurgan), coming into the event directly from the World Amateur Ladies Team event at Carton House, led out the Irish team on Day 1 and carded a score of 73 (+1) which included 4 birdies, showing what is possible on the this tricky course.
Lauren Walsh, (Castlewarden) followed Annabel into the clubhouse with a 74 (+2), while Irish Close champion Sara Byrne (Douglas) was two further back on 76 (+4).  Lauren said ‘It took a little while to get the feel of the greens, with some faster than others’.  The mood in the camp was high approaching Day 2. 

Day 2 was again a day of mixed fortunes and courage. Starting on the 10th tee this time, Annabel covered the front 9 in level par, and with some unfortunate lies, showed real tenacity in getting up and down from narrowly missing some of the smaller greens. Back to back birdies on 3 and 4 (her 12th and 13th holes) saw her move to Level Par and up the individual leaderboard before the Par 3 7th bared its teeth costing her a double bogey and she finished again with 73. 

For Lauren Walsh  it was a case of the putts that got away. She reeled off 15 pars, a number of which burned the hole and could have been birdies. Finishing with a 76 she was happy that she had struck the ball much better and confident that the greens will become her friend. Sara found the pin positions very testing, shooting 80,  yet showed good scrambling skills to keep competing right to the last hole. 

The team lies 9th in the competition with lots of opportunity t move up the leaderboard over the next couple of days.

The leading team at the midway point is Italy, led by Alessia Nobilo, who sits at a personal score of -12. 

Tournament Information

Conducted by Golf Canada in partnership with Golf Ontario and supported by the International Golf Federation and the R&A, the 2018 World Junior Girls Championship will bring together 57 of the top U18 female golfers from 18 countries. 

Annabel Wilson, who represented Ireland at the World Amateur Team Championships – Espirito Santo Trophy just last week, has this time teamed up with Irish Women’s Close Champion Sara Byrne (Douglas) and Lauren Walsh who finished inside the top 40 at this event last year.

This year’s field is highlighted by 10 competitors ranked inside the World Golf Amateur Rankings (WAGR) top 100 – including Wilson (No. 76) and Byrne (No. 89). The tournament’s top-ranked player, Atthaya Thitikul (No. 11), will represent Thailand in their first World Junior Girls appearance. Thitikul has won five separate titles in 2018, including Women’s Amateur Asia-Pacific Championship and The Queen Sirikit Cup.

The Irish Ladies Golf Union High Performance Director Anne Ferguson has travelled with the team as Manager. 

The event gets underway on Tuesday 11th September with 4 rounds of stroke play to be completed by Friday.