In a dramatic conclusion to the 100th Scottish Ladies’ Championship, Gabrielle Macdonald (Craigielaw) beat Connie Jaffrey (Troon Ladies) with a par four at the first hole of the sudden-death play-off in the final at Pretwick.
At the 19th, Jaffrey hit her second shot left and had to hit her pitch over a bunker and failed to get up and down while Macdonald, two-putted for victory.
“I’m delighted to win,” said MacDonald, a 21-year-old St Andrews University student. “I was nervous all day and that match was up and down. But it’s a tough course and the match was always going to go one way and then the other. “
In her third year of a geography degree, MacDonald is intending to turn professional sometime in the future. “But it won’t be for a few years,” she said. “At the moment, I just want to enjoy this win.”
On a bright but windy day, 17-year-old Jaffrey made a encouraging start in her attempt to become the youngest ever champion, winning the first hole in par. But MacDonald levelled with a birdie at the long third and then won the fifth and sixth and was still two up at the turn.
Jaffrey, the Scottish Girls’ Champion, launched a fight back with wins at the tenth and 11th and moved one up with a birdie at the long 12th.
But there was another turnaround with MacDonald taking the 13th and moving one up with a terrific birdie at the 16th where she hit a wedge shot to a foot.
At the 17th, it was the Ayrshire girl’s turn to make birdie to draw level and pars at the last sent the final into extra time.
For Jaffrey, it was a disappointing end to the week, but she underlined her promise as she looks forward to heading to a golf scholarship at Kansas State University this autumn.
For both finalists, a summer of golf lies ahead. “I have finished university for the summer,” said the new champion.
“Everyone at the University is so supportive. Kevin Hale is our first team coach and he is great.”
Jaffrey was disappointed but pleased to play her part in a great final. “I just ran out of shots at the end,” she conceded.
100th Scottish Amateur Champion 2014, Old Prestwick Gold Club