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Melanie Green fights back and wins the British Women’s Amateur

Melanie Green fights back and wins the British Women’s Amateur

Melanie Green (royal and old photo)

Melanie Green from the United States of America made a dream debut at the 121st Women’s Amateur Championship, taking a two-hole victory over Scotland’s Lorna McClymont after an epic final in Portmarnock.

The 22-year-old continued her new love of links golf after overcoming a four-stroke deficit after eight holes to win the choppy 36-hole tournament on a rainy day in Ireland.

McClymont, 23, had taken a one-hole lead with three holes to go, but Green showed remarkable resilience, came back and sealed the win with a 22-foot birdie putt on the final hole.

Green is the first American woman to win the prestigious title since Kelli Kuehne in 1996 at Royal Liverpool.

The University of South Florida graduate’s win has now secured spots for the Amundi Evian Championship and AIG Women’s Open later this summer, as well as the Chevron Championship and U.S. Women’s Open in 2025. Green, who is ranked 53rd in the Women’s World Amateur Golf Ranking® (WAGR®), will also traditionally receive an invitation to compete in next year’s Augusta National Women’s Amateur.

Green, who will also be invited to play in a Ladies’ European Tour event, joins a list of amateur champions that also includes Babe Zaharias, Catriona Matthew, Carlota Ciganda, Anna Nordqvist, Georgia Hall, Céline Boutier and Leona Maguire.

In the difficult conditions, Milngavie’s McClymont – caddied by her mother Gail – was quickest to cope and Green’s bogey on the 3rd hole gave the Scot an early lead. The American then failed to escape the thick rough on the 5th and was forced to abandon the hole. Green, who had opted not to have a caddie, continued to struggle with the weather and was three shots behind on the 6th hole after McClymont had made her first birdie in the final. Green’s bogey on the 8th hole left her four shots behind and she was in real trouble before she made a thrilling comeback.

A birdie on the ninth hole after an excellent approach shot gave Green a new lease of life and she was suddenly in the game despite the incessant rain. While Green was calming down, McClymont, a student at the University of Stirling, made four consecutive bogeys from the 11th hole onwards, losing three of them, so that the final was suddenly level after the 14th. McClymont ran into trouble on the 16th, allowing Green to recover and take the lead for the first time, a one-serve advantage that she held until the lunch break.

Green, a member of the U.S. team for next week’s Arnold Palmer Cup in Lahinch, was two shots ahead when her opponent’s tee shot went into a penalty area on the 21st hole. The next two holes were mixed before McClymont’s bogey on the par-5 24th dropped her to three shots back.

McClymont, 131st on WAGR® and a two-time winner of the R&A Student Tour Series Order of Merit, recovered to within one stroke of the lead with a par on the short 25th and only her second birdie of the day on the 28th. Green had chances to extend the lead but notably missed a short putt on the par-5 31st before the Scot caught up after a superb approach shot to 5 feet on the 32nd.

McClymont made two consecutive birdies from 15 feet on the next hole to take the lead, but Green immediately responded with her birdie on the long 34th as spectators were treated to a great finish. When the sun finally came up, McClymont made bogey on the 35th before Green made the decisive birdie.

A world-class field of 144 players from 35 countries have competed on the famous links north of Dublin since the start of the week. Among them were no fewer than 21 players ranked in the top 50 of the WAGR® and four in the top ten.

Green also added her name to a list of famous winners who have triumphed in various championships at Portmarnock, including Arnold Palmer, Ben Crenshaw, Seve Ballesteros, Bernhard Langer and José María Olazábal.

The Women’s Amateur Championship has only been held once before in Portmarnock, 93 years ago in 1931. The Amateur Championship was last held here in 2019 and was won by home player James Sugrue.

ABOUT THE Ladies British Amateur

This championship is considered, alongside the US Women’s Amateur Golf Championship, to be the most important in women’s amateur golf.

The first phase of the championship involves 144 players, each playing two rounds of 18 holes. The 64 players with the lowest scores over the 36 holes compete in the match play phase of the championship. Each match consists of one round of 18 holes, including the final.

The winner of the championship will receive the Pam Barton Memorial Salver, while the runner-up will receive the Diana Fishwick Cup. An international team award will be presented after the qualifying rounds of stroke play.

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