Ashmore shrugs off fitness woe

Barnham Broom's Jo Ashmore shrugged off a back problem to successfully retain the Norfolk seniors' championship, winning the title by two shots on the Valley course at her home club.

Ashmore, who has played for England seniors for the last two years, held off the challenge of county captain and club colleague Alex Cowie.

'I was very pleased, it's nice to win on your own course – you have the advantage of local knowledge but it does put a bit more pressure on you,' said.

Ashmore shot 77, two over CSS and followed up a couple of days later with a 75 in a medal which, together, have taken her handicap down to two.

She had only one real blip in her championship round when, uncharacteristically, she went out of bounds on the long eighth and amassed a double bogey. However she came straight back with birdies on the 10th and 12th. Ashmore has been troubled by injury for a couple of seasons Last year she had knee problems, this year it's been back issues – and she feels they've cost her a place in this season's England senior team. In one of the two main events for selection she remembered: 'I could hardly swing a club for the first two rounds, I had spasms in my back. Then I dosed myself up and managed to shoot 78, but it didn't do me any good and I've missed out on an England team place, which is disappointing.'

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The problem has improved since then and Ashmore is working on ways to manage it – and aims to play herself back into the national team.

Norfolk senior championship: 77 Jo Ashmore (Barnham Broom), 79 Alex Cowie (Barnham Broom), 84 Nickie Clarke (Royal Norwich).

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Handicap: Sue Allen (Gt Yarmouth & Caister) 89-17-72, Sadie Lines (Royal Norwich) 84-10-74, Teresa Tarrant (Barnham Broom) 90-15-75, Martha Fox (Dereham) - 98-23-75 (CSS 75).

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