TWO proven winners, two dark horses – that’s the intriguing mix for today’s semi-finals of the English Senior Women’s Amateur Championship at Enville Golf Club, Staffordshire.
The final four are Caroline Berry of Cheshire (pictured), Jackie Foster of Hertfordshire and the Sussex pair of Paula Carver and Clarissa Bushell.
Berry and Foster – who face each other – are both significant players in senior golf. Berry is a past winner of this title while Foster has two senior stroke play championships to her name and both are England senior internationals.
Meanwhile, both Carver and Bushell are targeting a first win at this level – while continuing a strong Sussex tradition in this event. Last year’s winner was county colleague Aileen Greenfield.
Carver, from Worthing, was first to claim her place in the semis when she beat Somerset’s Amanda Mayne 4/3 this afternoon. She’s making only her second appearance in the championship and she said: “To win this morning (in the quarter-finals) was great because it took me a step further than last year. This afternoon I had no expectation but I got off to a flyer.”
And the prospect of tomorrow? “I don’t think I can actually breathe. It’s wow, wow, wow! Whatever happens it’s been a fantastic week for me,” added Carver, who works full-time as an IT consultant.”
Bushell, from West Sussex, is having a great time on her most successful outing so far in this championship. “I just feel more settled, a lot more positive,” she said. “I’m playing nicely, everything feels good, the weather is fantastic, the course is fantastic. I’m loving it!”
She beat Lancashire’s Susan Caton (Pleasington) 5/3, having plotted her way round the course and wielded her secret weapon – a putter ‘stolen’ from her husband!
Berry – with husband Geoff on the bag – was next to secure her place, with a 5/4 win over Yorkshire’s Karen Jobling (Richmond). “I got off to a good start which made me relax and my long range putting was really good.”
She has also enjoyed the benefit of new competitions at her club, Bromborough, which are open to all; men, women and juniors. “It gave me some competitive golf before I came here and I reduced my handicap from one to scratch. That practice has been fabulous,” she said.
Foster, from Bishops Stortford Golf Club, completed the semi-final line-up with her 7/5 win over Debbie Warren (Kings Norton), who had earlier defeated past champion Julie Brown.
Foster was three-under on the outward nine and remarked: “I started off nicely and hit some good shots into the green. All my long putts were stone dead, while I know Debbie didn’t have her best game.”
In the over 60s Ann Howard Trophy, the final will be played by defending champion Carol Wild (Notts Ladies) and Sheree Dove-Wild (Camberley Heath).
Click here for full scores in the championship flight for the Wendy Taylor Salver.
Click here for full scores in the Ann Howard Trophy
Image copyright Leaderboard Photography