Thursday, September 06, 2012


Begorrah! Scotland somehow managed to snatch defeat by Ireland from the jaws of victory on the final day of the Women's Home Internationals at Cork Golf Club on the sunny southern coast of Ireland.
Playing the other pointless team with only the wooden spoon at stake, Scotland made a 3-0 clean sweep of the foursomes against Ireland and looked set for their first match win in the series since they won the title in 2010
It was not to be. The Scots, who had been a shade unlucky to lose to England on Wednesday, went completely off the boil in the afternoon singles.
There were ominous signs early on that Scotland were heading for defeat, despite their 3-0 lunchtime lead.
The Fighting Irish were soon leading in all six ties and in most of them the Irish just kept on increasing their advantage.
Kelsey MacDonald and Rachael Watton, who had scored memorable wins against the English, lost their singles within 15 and 16 holes respectively against the Irish.
There were also defeats for Scottish champion Laura Murray, Eilidh Briggs and Alyson McKechin, who played with a bandage and other dressing on her badly blistered left foot.
Only 16-year-old adult international debutante, 16-year-old Lauren Whyte from the St Regulus club, St Andrews could hold her head high at the finish.
She was Scotland's lone afternoon winner in the team's shambles of a singles performance against the Irish. Lauren beat Lucy Simpson by 2 and 1.
And so Scotland, for the second year in a row, finished last of four.
Next year the Women's Home Internationals will be held at Scotscraig GC, Fife.
In the title decider between the teams that had both beaten Scotland and Ireland, England retained the championship by the narrowest of margins.
They drew with Wales 4 1/2-4 1/2 for both teams to finished with 2 1/2 match points.
The tie-breaker was individual games won and that went in favour of England by 18 1/2-16 1/2.
Their 9-0 win over Ireland on the opening day proved decisive in the end.

Cork Golf Club, Ireland
Day 3
Foursomes - Kelsey MacDonald and Rachael Watton beat Mary Dowling and Jessica Carty 5 and 3, Alyson McKechin and Lauren Whyte beat Gillian O'Leary and Sarah Cunningham 2 and 1, Eilidh Briggs and Jane Turner beat Deirdre Smith and Chloe Ryan 2 and 1 (3-0).
Singles - MacDonald lost to Dowling 4 and 3, Laura Murray lost to Ryan 4 and 2, Watton lost to Carty 3 and 2, Whyte bt Lucy Simpson 2 and 1, Briggs lost to Smith 5 and 4, McKechin lost to Maria Dunne 6 and 4 (1-5)

WALES 4 1/2, ENGLAND 4 1/2
Foursomes - Amy Boulden and Becky Harries lost to Georgia Hall and Emily Taylor 4 and 2, Chloe Williams and Katie Bradbury bt Holly Clyburn and Bronte Law 2 and 1, Gemma Bradbury and Jess Evans halved with Alexandra Peters and Kelly Tidy (1 1/2-1 1/2).
Singles - Boulden bt Tidy 3 and 1, Williams lost to Hall 2 and 1, Katie Bradbury bt Taylor 1 hole, Gemma Bradbury lost to Clyburn 6 and 4, Evans lost to Amber Ratcliffe 3 and 2, Harries bt Law 4 and 3 (3-3).

1st England 2 1/2 pt (Games won 18 1/2)
2nd Wales 2 1/2 pt (Games won 16 1/2)
*England retained the title on the tie-breaking individual games won rule.

3rd Ireland 1pt
4th Scotland 0 pt

Next year's Women's Home Internationals will be played at Scotscraig GC, Fife from September 11 to 13.