Golf: North Berwick star takes plaudits after title victory

NEW Scottish Ladies’ Open champion Catriona Matthew has earned praise for being a shining example for every girl golfer in the Home of Golf.

The North Berwick woman turned in a majestic performance to win in her native East Lothian, finishing ten shots clear of the field with a 15-under-par total of 201.

It was the eighth victory of her career and sets the 41-ywar-old up nicely for a sixth Solheim Cup appearance in Ireland at the end of next month.

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Matthew was made an honorary member of Archerfield Links after winning the British Women’s Open in 2009.

And, according to Tom Younger, the chief executive, she has been the perfect ambassador for the resort outside Gullane.

“The club was only two years old when Catriona joined and started to use the practice facilities,” he told the Evening News. “She’s been brilliant around the members and when she won the British Women’s Open two years ago we felt it would be fitting to bestow on her the honour of becoming an honorary member.

“We host the Catriona Matthew Ladies’ Day every year and it is always full. Catriona gives up her time willingly and does a great job with that.”

Younger was asked if he felt Matthew’s latest win would encourage more girls to take up the game in her home country.

“Yes but I would like to think that has already been the case over the years,” he replied. “The likes of Lynn Kenny and Carly Booth, for example, look up to her. They must see someone who has won a major, played in so many Solheim Cups and won as often as she has on Tour and aspire to do the same. Catriona has achieved what she has in the game due to the fact she puts in so much hard work.

Matthew’s win took her earnings from four events in Europe in just over a month to around £110,000. “I struggled a bit last year due to the changes Kevin made to my swing, but I’ve become more comfortable with everything and I’m now hitting the ball as well as I ever have,” she said. Musselburgh’s Vikki Laing finished in a tie for 16th after a closing 72.