Teenage international Lizzie Prior pulled off an impressive wire-to-wire victory in the girls’ championship at the weather-hit Fairhaven Trophies in Lancashire.
“I was gunning for a win, but it’s a lot nicer to know I started in the lead and ended in the lead – that’s definitely an achievement for me,” said Prior, from Burhill in Surrey. She was five-under par for 54 holes and won by three shots.
England also retained the Nations Cup, thanks to Hollie Muse (West Lancashire), Toby Briggs (Dunston Hall) and George Gardner (Castle Royle) who won by four shots from Ireland. Muse, who was joint runner-up in the girls' event, was also in last year’s winning team.
The tournament was hit by heavy overnight rain after the second round and the final day’s play was reduced from 36 holes to 18. But when play finally got underway, conditions were excellent.
She came to this event with memories of last year, when she shared the lead at the halfway stage, only to stay in the slipstream as Lancashire’s Sophie Lamb played the last two rounds in nine-under par. This time, Prior was determined to win.
She opened her account with a score of three-under 72 which led the girls’ event by a shot from rivals including another girl international, Emma Allen of Hampshire. She added level par on the second day, when breezy, wet conditions made scoring tricky, and extended her lead to two shots. A final round of two-under 73 clinched it for her and she finished three clear of Muse and Scotland’s Shannon McWilliam.