Future looks promising for county girls

The Norfolk girls have wrapped up their 2011 season with recognition for the performances of their rising stars.

'We've got a lot of talent coming up and it's very promising for the future,' said junior organiser Carol Delf. 'A lot of girls got down from high handicaps to Silver in one playing season and they all encouraged each other. I've never known competition like it for our Handicap Challenge.'

The season's awards were made at the girls' autumn meeting at Swaffham, when the day's winner was Megan Mann of Eaton. She scored the narrowest of victories, beating two other players on countback after all three scored 42 points.

Leading scores: 42 pts Megan Mann (Eaton), Ellie Brown (Barnham Broom), Alisha Margerum (Thetford). 39 Amy Taylor (Bawburgh), Jasmine Campbell (Royal Norwich). 38 Amelia Williamson (Royal Cromer).

The Norfolk order of merit competition for the Brancaster Shield – which includes national and local events – was again won by Amber Ratcliffe of Royal Cromer.

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The 16-year-old had another excellent year in which she made her debut as a GB&I girl international, retained the East region women's championship and won the Norfolk ladies' title.

She was unable to attend the meeting because she was involved in England training but Delf said: 'Amber is a great role model for the girls and she shows them what they can aim for.'

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The Norfolk Shield, awarded for results in local competition, was won by Juliet Fenton of King's Lynn. She was also runner-up to Ratcliffe in the Brancaster Shield.

During the year Fenton was a regular for the Norfolk girls' team and, at the age of 14, won both the King's Lynn ladies' and girls' championships. She also played in the English U15 championship for the first time. The runner-up in the Norfolk Shield was Amelia Williamson of Royal Cromer.

Both orders of merit are sponsored by the ladies of Royal West Norfolk.

The closely contested Handicap Challenge was won by Costessey Park's Samantha Darling who, most impressively, cut herself from 36 to 18 during the season. Along the way she reached the grand final of the National Skills Challenge.

The division winners were: up to nine handicap, Amber Ratcliffe (Royal Cromer) from one to plus-one; 10-20 Juliet Fenton (King's Lynn) from 12 to seven, and Emma Dann (The Norfolk) from 20 to 15; 21-29 Jessica Dixon (Thetford) from 22 to 14; 30-36 Samantha Darling (Costessey Park) 36 to 18.

Handicap achievement awards were made to: Ellie Brown (Barnham Broom), Jasmine Campbell (Royal Norwich), Nicola Dalzell (Barnham Broom), Samantha Darling (Costessey Park), Jessica Dixon (Thetford), Ellie Howard (Sheringham), Jessica Linge (Sheringham), Alisha Margerum (Thetford), Chloe Rowswell (Eaton), Aimie Rudd (King's Lynn),Amy Taylor (Bawburgh), Hannah Thompson (Bawburgh) and Amelia Williamson (Royal Cromer).

Meanwhile Juliet Fenton and Maisy Turner (Hunstanton) were awarded their county colours for representing the Norfolk girls' first team.

Five players from the girls' first team leave junior ranks at the end of this season: Emily Anthony (Barnham Broom), Emma Dann (The Norfolk), Jennifer Hide (Royal Norwich), Ellie Judd (Eaton) and Ruby Plume (Sprowston Manor).

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