Catriona cruises to victory

Catriona Matthew earned an imperious 10-stroke victory on home soil at the Ladies Scottish Open on Saturday.

Scotland’s Catriona Matthew earned an imperious 10-stroke victory at the Aberdeen Ladies Scottish Open presented by EventScotland on Saturday.
The 41-year-old from East Lothian held a four shot lead heading into the final round after a course record 65 at her home course on Friday.
Despite the pressure of playing just five minutes’ from her North Berwick home, she fired a closing six under par 66 on a fine and breezy final day at Archerfield Links, where she was given honorary membership after winning the 2009 Ricoh Women’s British Open. It paved the way for her fourth Ladies European Tour win and a first prize cheque of €33,000.
First round leader Hannah Jun of the United States carded a solid final round of 72 to finish back in second place, a stroke clear of third placed Caroline Afonso of France.
Matthew finished on 15-under 201 after blowing the field away with six birdies and a single bogey in her first eight holes. Her only mistake came at the par-three fourth hole, when she found the sand left of the green.
With a nine-stroke stroke lead over Afonso at the turn, she carded steady pars through the back nine before sealing her success with a 15-foot putt for birdie on the 518-yard par-five 18th hole.
She and husband Graeme, her caddie of 16 years, were then joined by their two young daughters, Katie and Sophie, on the 18th green, with her parents watching from outside the ropes.
Matthew said: “I’m absolutely delighted to win the Aberdeen Ladies Scottish Open on my home turf on a course I’m a member at and I live along the road. I felt a little bit of pressure at the start of the week, so I’m just delighted that I finished well.”
The five-time Solheim Cup player seemed to handle the situation with typical serenity but added: “Playing in front of a lot of family and friends, there was definitely pressure and it makes it extra special. I don’t get the chance to play in Scotland very often. It was great to see so many familiar faces in the crowd this week.”
It was her second victory in Scotland in a 17-year professional career and her first Scottish win since the 1998 WPGA Championship of Europe at Gleneagles.
“I played really well and got a hot putter and probably played my best golf today. I played really well on the front nine and knew I had eight shots, which in a way made it more difficult, but I managed to trot out a few pars,” she said.
England’s Elizabeth Bennett earned a career best finish of fourth on three under after a 68, with Scotland’s Kylie Walker (69), Veronica Zorzi (72) and South Africans Lee-Anne Pace (71) and Ashleigh Simon (73) a stroke further back in joint fifth place.
In the amateur event that was running concurrently, Kevin Daly collected first prize, followed by Kenny Abbott and David McCaulay.
Matthew will now head to next week’s CN Canadian Women’s Open and play two more events in the United States before returning to Europe for The Solheim Cup, from September 23-25.