Lochend Ladies Championship 2004

Saturday 15th August
After all the bad weather and match reschedules this week, todays fine sunshine was very welcome indeed for the finals. Eileen Gillespie and Diane Moncrieff put on a good match as Diane began with no sign of the nerves that almost got the better of her at the end of the semi-final. Settling down quickly, Diane took the first two holes and held the lead throughout the outward nine as the putts failed to drop for Eileen. Eileen began to show real form after the turn to be 1-up by the 12th then hole-saving putts at the 13th and 14th kept Diane in touch. Diane had a real chance to level the match at the 15th with Eileen in the sand, Diane needed a delicate pitch over the bunker, unfortunately it wasn't delicate enough and ran over into the far bunker, Eileen who by now was showing just why she is the defnding champion pitched a fine shot out the bunker and took the hole which proved to be the defining moment as Eileen then took the match and her second Championship at the 16th for a 3&2 victory. Eileen now represents Lochend in the Champion Of Champions and Diane should be very pround that she has gave a fine account of herself in her first ever final. Championship draw in full

In the Bronze Championship Final, Jaci Moriarty survived a real scare from Violet Paterson. Jaci was off to a flyer taking an early 3-up lead then the pair were more evenly match for a spell however Jaci's pitch in at the to go four up gave Violet a mountain to climb and after the 13th Jaci was 5 up with 5 to play and looking good for the match but the drama was just beginning as Violet won the 14th, 15th and the nerves were really kicking in for Jaci as she found the fairway bunker on the 16th as Violet hit the green then putted in to go only 2 behind 2 with 2 to play. The fightback came to a halt at the 17th when Jaci hit a fine pitch onto the 17th green which was enough to take her over the winning line and secure the Bronze Chanpionship to cap a remarkable year. Bronze Championship Draw in full
So that's it for another year and although the winners might have been predictable I'm sure they'll agree it was never easy as they both had their scares. Thanks to all the ladies who came down to support the finalists, making the day feel that bit special.

Thursday 12th August
The second semifinal in the Bronze Championship went ahead tonight in the most horrid conditions, Margaret Richards and Violet Paterson deserve some sort of medal for braving the weather and there was not much in it as Violet was 1-up at the turn and at times it was becoming a lottery, However Violet handled the conditions, going 3-up after 14. Margaret took the 15th then after a half on the 16th, Violet sunk the putt for the match on the 17th to make her second appearance in the Bronze Championship final were she will meet Jaci Moriarty. Let's hope the weather is better than tonight.

Wednesday 11th August
Defending Champion Eileen Gillespie continued her superb form in the first semifinal. Three times Champion Linda Bain played a fine game but couldn't halt the relentless charge as Eileen took the match at the 14th, a result which might be a little flattering as the tie was more closely match than the score indicates.
In the other semifinal, Diane Moncrieff and Coleen Derighetti were dreaming of the dizzy heights of a first ever final and a good match it turned out to be. The lead changed hands a few times over the outward nine. Diane won the 9th 10th and 12th to be 3-up then at the 13th Coleen hit a fine fine approach shot then Diane followed with an ever better approach shot to ensure a half and that was indicative of how the match had been played all night. However when Diane sunk a 20 foot putt on the 14th to go 4-up with 4 to play it looked like game over. With the ladies assembling at the 15th Diane found the bunker and Coleen hit the edge of the green, due to the horrible lie Diane couldn't get it out the sand first time which was a shame because, in front of the watching crowd this wasn't indicative of Diane's play tonight, Diane conceded the 16th when Coleen hit the edge of the green in 3 and Diane, despite a fine wood out of the fairway bunker couldn't equal. The comeback still looked a possibility at the 17th when Coleen's tee shot was short of the green and Diane hit the greenside bunker, Coleen pitched up but it ran 7 feet past then Diane handled the pressure to hit a fine shot out of the sand which was unlucky to stop abruptly on the edge of the green almost the same distance a Coleen's. Coleen sunk her putt for the three then Diane held her nerve and followed in to half the hole and a well deserve 2&1 win in a match in which both players played better than their handicaps. For Diane its a first ever Championship Final, and she is still unbeaten in all Matchplay events this year, as for me I'm content with the fact that I played two of my best rounds of the year, broke my duck and competed better then I'd ever imagined. Championship draw in full

In the only Bronze Championship semifinal played tonight, Jaci Moriarty secured her final place by winning her match with Val Smith very convincingly indeed. Not the close game as expected as Val struggled to keep up with Jaci who played an outward 9 which could have challenged the Championship itself.
The other semifinal between Margaret Richards and Violet Paterson will be played tomorrow. Bronze Championship Draw in full

So its Eileen Gillespie and Diane Moncrieff who will compete this years final, while Eileen will probably start favourite due to her experience and success this year, Diane is not to be taken lightly especially in the Matchplay format, just ask anyone from the the long list of opponents left in her wake this year. Look forward to seeing you all at finals day on Saturday.

Tuesday 10th August
A day later than planned due to the weather the Championships kicked off tonight with seven of the eight ties being played.
Eileen Gillespie kicked off her title defense with a tough match against Myra Law. A superb outward nine saw Myra two up for most of the match and at one stage Myra was 3-up. However a game of two half's it was as Eileen's back nine ended with a run of par's which saw her come back and win the match at the 18th.
It doesn't get any easier for Eileen as she now faces 3-times Champion Linda Bain who went about her business as efficiently as ever to see off the challenge from Kath Leith at the 14th.
Diane Moncrieff maintained her superb matchplay form by booking yet another semifinal place, after a fine victory over Joan Gray. With semifinals in both Lochcraig Ladies and Foursomes Matchplay, semifinal of Lochend Foursomes and the final of our Summer Matchplay Diane is proving to be so far unbeatable in the Matchplay format this year.
She will probably start favourite in her semifinal with yours truly (Coleen Derighetti) who finally won a Championship Match after four years of first round defeats. Winning the first three holes helped steady Coleen's game as Pat Meikle, who has knocked out Coleen in this event in more than one previous meeting, took a while to get into the game and found herself 4-down at the turn. You just knew the fightback from Pat was going to come and sure enough Pat won the 10th, 11th, and 12th and looked a fair bet to get back to all square when a pitch to the 13th ended in the bunker and Coleen holed a putt to steal the hole, halt the fightback and swing the tie back her way. Coleen then went on to take the 14th, miss a nervous putt for the match at the 15th and finally remove the monkey from her back at the 16th in the only tie of the night which didn't go the way of the seeding.
So it's the battle of the previous Champions as Eileen takes on Linda in the first semifinal and in the other semifinal its Diane and Coleen, one match from playing in the final, how scary is that?
Championship draw in full

In the Bronze Championship, top-qualifiers Margaret Richards, Jaci Moriarty and Val Smith all won through. Margaret now plays the winner of the Violet Paterson and Patsy White match which will now take place tomorrow night. The Jaci Moriarty/Val Smith semifinal is too close to call, both have been in superb prizewinning form around the opens this year and have consistently carded excellent scores so a mouthwatering tie is in prospect.
Bronze Championship Draw in full