Amber Ratcliffe to lead Norfolk at English girls’ championships
Norfolk – led by double county champion Amber Ratcliffe – will be aiming high when the English girls' championships get underway next week in Cheshire.
Three events will tee off simultaneously on Tuesday: the English girls' championship itself at Sandiway Golf Club, and the companion U15 and U13 championships, at nearby Delamere Forest.
It means that almost 250 of England's most talented girl golfers will be heading to Cheshire – and five of them are from Norfolk, which is thought to be the highest-ever number of county representatives.
It would have been more, but the intense competition for places in the events mean the handicap limit drops each year and two county girls have been confined to the waiting lists.
Ratcliffe, from Royal Cromer, and the Hunstanton duo of Maisy Turner and Isobel Richardson, will play in the English girls'.
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Amelia Williamson (Royal Cromer) and Chloe Rowswell (Eaton) will take their places in the U13 championship.
Meanwhile, those left to bite their nails on the reserve lists include Amy Taylor of Bawburgh and Samantha Darling of Costessey Park.
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County junior organiser Carol Delf is delighted by her girls' readiness to travel and compete at the highest levels.
She said: 'It's very good for Norfolk and it shows what a promising group of girls we have in the county.'
Williamson and Rowswell will also be in action this Sunday. They have both qualified for the national final of the Abraham Trophy, which is contested by the most improved girls in the country, on the basis of handicap reduction.
The 18-hole final is always played immediately before the U15 and U13 championships and on the same course. A Williamson victory would be an historic double because Amelia's mother, Tracey, won the Abraham in 1983.
The girls' championship also marks the start of a very busy spell for Ratcliffe, who is the Norfolk ladies' and girls' champion.
The week after, from August 7-9, she will represent England in the Girls' Home Internationals for the first time.
She's part of a team of eight – and one of four new caps – who will be aiming to win the tournament at Radyr, Wales, for the fifth year in a row.
The following week, Ratcliffe will play in an international field in the British girls' championship at Tenby.