Up north and under par

Gemma Burgess claims runner up spot in English U16 Girls’ Championships at Morecambe.

At the end of July, Gemma Burgess (North Hants), Hannah Hellyer (Hayling), Brooke Macarthur (Stoneham), Stevie Crozier-Hunt (Corhampton) and Rosie Rooney (Alresford) all made the journey northbound to the beautiful coastline of Lancashire, to compete in the English Girls’ U16/U14 Championship.

It was a great start for Gemma, an early eagle at the second hole, quickly followed by a birdie at the fourth got her off to a flying start. After turning in 35, four birdies in the first five holes on her back nine helped her to secure a five under par round of 68 and lead the 70-strong U16 field by 2 shots.

Commenting on her round in her first media interviews, Gemma said: “I’m buzzing – I never thought I’d come up with that. I’m really happy. Everything went well – If I was in a bad place, I got myself out and putting was good as well. This gives me confidence and we’ll see what happens tomorrow. I’m hoping for another steady round – I loved the course so hopefully it’s another good one.”

Hayling’s Hannah Hellyer also had a strong first round with birdies at 6, 16 and 17 helping her to return and opening score of 74 and putting her in a good position going into day two.

Wednesday’s round came and Gemma’s game remained strong. Despite a triple bogey at the 8th hole, Gemma maintained her focus and continued to putt well, making six birdies in her one under par round of 72.

Course conditions were certainly more challenging with some rain and difficult winds to contend with. A second round score of 81 ensured Hannah made the cut, but unfortunately a few tough holes on day two meant the end of Stevie and Brooke’s campaigns. After a difficult first round, Rosie improved her score on day two by three shots but sadly it wasn’t quite enough to advance to the final day in the U14 competition.

Heading into the final day, Gemma had a one shot lead over England Girls’ Squad player Maggie Whitehead. Once again, Gemma got off to a strong and steady start on the front nine holes of the morning round. The back nine proved to be more challenging but still left her in contension and after a really steady concluding round of 75 Gemma secured her place as runner up in her first 72-hole national competition.

Well done to all the girls that took part in this national event and a huge congratulations to you Gemma on your performance. So proud of the amazing resilience and superb play showcased throughout the week. That opening round of 68 is definitely one to remember.

You can see the full results from the competition here >>

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