Eaton trio smiling after securing league success
Eaton Ladies pulled off an exciting 'derby' victory on away territory to win the Norfolk LCGA Scratch League Division title for the first time.
The team of Karen Young, Debbie Ogaard Nielsen and Sally Benton travelled to Royal Norwich knowing they would have to be at their very best to get the positive result they required against a strong home team. They needed only to take a point to come out on top– but rose to the challenge in impressive fashion to win 2-1 and take the title at the expense of their city rivals.
The match was played in handicap order with Young taking on fellow former County Champion Sammy Martin, who plays off scratch, in the opener.
In a nip and tuck battle Martin prevailed one up – so the onus was on Ogaard Nielsen and Benton to see their side home.
Ogaard Nielsen produced an excellent chip at the 16th to move two up with two to play against young county player Rebecca Heeles before closing out the match at the next and then Benton recorded a second Eaton victory of the match to make it a real day to remember.
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The skipper, who plays off nine, was up against a formidable opponent in County President Nickie Clarke but showed no signs of nerves as she moved 5 up after just five holes. It was no surprise when Clarke started to eat away at the big lead but Benton had enough in her locker to see out the match out 3&2 and claim a 2-1 win for Eaton.
The result cancelled out a Royal Norwich win at Eaton earlier in the season, with victories at home and away against Hunstanton setting up the final day drama. Barnham Broom were the fourth team in Division One but they were unable to fulfil a couple of fixtures due to availability issues and the battle for one of the top prizes in county golf became a three-way affair.
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The Eaton captain was understandably delighted with her team's efforts.
'Winning at Royal Norwich was an excellent achievement,' she said. 'It's never easy to win away from home, especially when you are up against players of the calibre of Sammy, Rebecca and Nickie.
'It's a scratch event and I think we had the higher handicap as a team but we did it. We also won at Hunstanton, which was a fine achivement, and I am very proud of the team.'
Harriet Carr also represented Eaton earlier in the season.
The league is divided into four sections, with the other winners being Ryston Park (Division Two), Dunston Hall (Division Three) and Weston Park (Division Four).