Cornwall pair Collette Burgess and Hana Dabrowski ensured the long journey north to St Andrews was a hugely successful one after claiming victory in the Grand Final of the 2019 R&A Coronation Foursomes.
Among 32 players contesting the finale of the largest club competition for women and girls across Great Britain and Ireland, Burgess and Dabrowski teamed up to emerge victorious by a single point after a tense day over the Eden Course.
After posting their score from the first group of the day, the Bude & North Cornwall Golf Club duo faced an anxious wait in search of the coveted prize.
In the end, their impressive 42 points in the handicap stableford foursomes format proved just enough as they lifted the silverware to cap a memorable first-ever visit to the Home of Golf.
In doing so, they also booked a dream place in the Pro-Am for next year’s AIG Women’s British Open and will rub shoulders with stars of the sport at Royal Troon.
In overcast but still conditions, Burgess, playing off an 11 handicap, and Dabrowski, a 13-handicapper, used their links experience from their home course to excel in St Andrews. They won from runners-up Jillian Hughes and Heather Milburn (Consett Golf Club in Durham) on 41 points, with the Walton Heath partnership of Mary O’Sullivan and Marion Bridgen securing third place with 39 points.
Dabrowski, who hails from the Czech Republic and has lived in Cornwall for 11 years, said: “I was very nervous to tee off first but we gelled well together and enjoyed the course. The conditions were mild enough for us to post a good score.
“It was a nervous wait for all the scores to come in but thankfully we managed to hold on. It was a great achievement to win our Area Final and now to do it here in St Andrews is amazing.
“It has been an incredible experience, being here and playing in the town and seeing our names at the top of the leaderboard. This is a dream come true.”
Burgess, who was playing in the Coronation Foursomes for a 17th time, added: “It is absolutely brilliant, I can’t believe we have done it. It’s a dream trip for us.
“We are so excited now for Royal Troon next year and the AIG Women’s British Open. We haven’t been to any major golf events before so it will be fantastic. We are very excited.”
Largest domestic competition
The Coronation Foursomes is the biggest domestic competition for female golfers, forming part of The R&A’s drive to encourage more women and girls into playing golf and is renowned for its camaraderie, companionship and friendly competition.
Almost 22,000 women and girl golfers from over 1,100 clubs took part this year for the chance to join the Coronation Foursomes roll of honour and secure the 2020 Pro-Am chance.
Local competitions were organised by clubs across Great Britain and Ireland to give golfers the opportunity to reach the Area Finals, before the top 16 teams booked their trip to St Andrews (including a stay at the Old Course Hotel Golf Resort & Spa and awards dinner) for the finale.
Established in 1953 to celebrate the Queen’s Coronation, the team event is open to all members of affiliated golf clubs in Great Britain and Ireland who hold a current CONGU handicap of 36 or under.
Any club affiliated to a home nation can run a qualifying round, played over 18 holes of foursomes stableford, so look out for the chance to enter in 2020.
Please visit the Coronation Foursomes at randa.org to view the 2019 leaderboard and find out more information about the event.