Image: The R&A
20-year-old German player Aline Krauter has won the 2020 Women’s Amateur Championship.
The 117th staging of the event at West Lancashire saw the determined young star defeat 18-year-old Roehampton golfer Annabell Fuller by one-hole in a dramatic 18-hole final.
In fact, it seems that German women’s golf is enjoying a run of wins at the moment.
This latest victory comes just a week after Sophia Popov achieved her triumph against the odds at the AIG Women’s Open at Royal Troon, and this victory was just as well deserved.
Ranked at No.71 on the World Amateur Golf Ranking® (WAGR®), Aline defeated an international field of almost 100 players at the renowned English venue.
As well as experiencing the honour of lifting the trophy, she now gains exemptions into the AIG Women’s Open and, traditionally, the US Women’s Open, The Evian Championship and Augusta National Women's Amateur Championship.
It also puts her in a very good position going forward into her professional career. She will no doubt be hoping to go on and mirror the successes of fellow Women’s Amateur victors such as Anna Nordqvist (2008), Georgia Hall (2013), Céline Boutier (2015), Leona Maguire (2017), plus of course her fellow countrywoman Leonie Harm (2018).
Speaking after her final round, the Stanford University student said:
“It’s my biggest win, 100 per cent. I won the German Girls in 2016 and then I’ve played decently in some college tournaments in the US but not been close in one.
“I felt under control out there. I’m not sure what did the trick, but I was quite unphased on the course which I think helped me in the wind and the conditions. It was so fun to play in the final.
“I’m now so excited to play in the AIG Women’s Open, I’m honoured. I watched Sophia (Popov) win last week, it was amazing. I had a club fitting with her in February before COVID-19 when everything was fine. To play in the event next year at Carnoustie will be amazing.”
Stuggart-born Aline looked in early trouble when Annabell, who won the English Women’s Open Amateur Stroke Play Championship last week, claimed successes at the 1st, 2nd and 4th holes. But Krauter refused to give in and went on to win six out of eight holes from the 5th, including a near ace at the 6th, and went three up after 12.
Meanwhile Annabell, ranked No.41 on the WAGR®, then produced her own fightback, winning the 16th with a birdie and also the short 17th after Krauter had bunker problems. But as her opponent made a safe par-4 down the last, the Surrey golfer and University of Florida student was unable to make birdie.
“It is tough to take, but it was good fun. I knew I had to play well from the very beginning against a great, great player. Getting off to a good start was great but Aline came back.
“I played my best, a couple of shots leaked here and there, but nothing major. She played great golf. I tried my best to the very end and if I had holed my birdie putt it could have been different. This week has given me more motivation to practice even harder and achieve more.”
Krauter also defeated defending champion Emily Toy in the semi final.
The tournament was hit by bad weather throughout the week, with play abandoned on Tuesday due to torrential rain. However, for the final they were blessed with sunshine.
The Men's Amateur Championship also took place this week at Royal Birkdale.
So much talent was displayed by all who took part in the event on the Merseyside links, and it further cements the general feeling that women's golf is on the rise.
Congratulations Aline! We can’t wait to see where your career takes you next.
The 2021 Women’s Amateur Champisonship is set for Kilmarnock (Barassie) in Ayrshire, Scotland from June 8 to 12 - get it in your diary now.
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