Prospect Vale’s Tammy Hall was runner-up in the Australian Women’s Senior Amateur Championship final at Sandy Creek Golf Club in the Barossa Valley, South Australia.
Players contest 36 holes in qualifying, with the leading 16 progressing to elimination match play. The leading eight in four separate age divisions also qualify for age flights.
Hall qualified in 13th place then won her round of 16 match against Lynne Brown 4/3, defeated Helen Pascoe 3/2 in the quarter-finals and defeated number 1 qualifier Kim Burke 3/2 in her semi-final.
Hall faced Sue Wooster from Victoria in the final.
Wooster, 56, held off a gallant challenge 2&1 to win her first senior amateur crown.
After big wins in Canada and the US in the past three months and a near miss in the coveted US Senior Women’s Amateur, Wooster was desperate to add another national title to her four previous mid-amateur triumphs.
But it took almost an entire lap of the challenging Sandy Creek layout to quell the challenge of Hall, herself a previous mid-amateur champ.
“I’m thrilled to win the Australian Women’s Senior championship,” Wooster said.
“Tammy was a great opponent and I thoroughly enjoyed the match. She played very well and kept the pressure on me.”
Wooster led early, but the match was all square at the turn as the Tasmanian piled the pressure on.
But Wooster, who has now won national senior championships in Canada, New Zealand and on home soil, regained the initiative and stood on the 14th tee two-up.
Hall, however, would not lie down. After Wooster missed the green with her approach, par proved enough for the Prospect Vale member to halve her opponent’s lead.
But just as quickly, Hall three-putted the long 15th to suffer a bogey and go two-down once more.
Wooster momentarily must have thought she’d won the title when she canned a 4m birdie putt on the 16th, but Hall showed great poise to answer with her own birdie from 3.5m to extend the match.
But she couldn’t maintain the rage and when both women parred the 17th, the hole was halved and the match won by the National Golf Club member.
“Sue only hit 2 iffy shots for the day, she played really well all week,” a gracious Hall said before turning her attention to 2019.
“It was great to watch her today … but I’ll get her next year!”
The stage belonged to Wooster, who was a beaten finalist in the prestigious US version of this event only two weeks ago.
“Last year I lost in the quarter-finals, so it’s really great to win it,” she said.
“I came in full of expectation and felt there was some pressure on me and even though my form was probably not as good as it had been in the US, I played steadily through the week.”
Wooster, who won the North and South Amateur at Pinehurst and three national crowns in Canada on her recent trip, said she hoped to earn a start at the Vic Open next year to challenge herself against the world’s leading pros.
Deidre Panton (Prospect Vale) and Devonport Golf Club pair Lu Proud and Jane Donohue qualified for their age divisions and Proud even nailed a hole in one.