Saturday, 25 July 2015


 And the winner of the 2015 ESVLGA Championship is Karen Ballantyne who successfully defended her title against fellow Craigmillar Park member Mairi Pollock by the margin of 2 & 1. 
After the lovely sunshine enjoyed at the conclusion of the semi-final matches and over lunchtime, a few clouds rolled in for the Final. However the blue skies were still around whilst we were treated to a display from the Red Arrows at the nearby East Fortune Air Show together with a variety of other planes.  It's not often that our ESVLGA Championship Final has its own Red Arrows "fly past" to mark the occasion.
Wow, so close together!!!
After the clouds rolled in and brought some rain there came a step back in time

 Back to the golf on display!  Continuing with her good putting touch from the morning, Mairi eased to a 2 up lead after seven holes. The tricky eighth hole resulted in a half but a regulation par 4 at the ninth by Karen, meant that Mairi's lead reduced to 1 up at the turn and the match was squared by Karen at the eleventh hole.  Karen took a short-lived lead at the thirteenth with Mairi immediately winning back the par 3 fourteenth. However, Karen's pitch onto the fifteenth green rattled the flagstick and dropped into the hole meaning Karen went back to 1 up and she doubled her lead with an excellent pitch into the sixteenth green and a conceded birdie putt.  A half in par 3 at the seventeenth was not enough for Mairi to take the match up the eighteenth and thus Karen Ballantyne became the 2015 ESVLGA Champion.  Congratulations Karen.
Karen will represent the  East Division at the  SVLGA Championship at Blairgowrie on 20th/21st September and will be presented with the Lady McInnes Shaw Championship Cup at the AGM/Prizegiving at Gullane in November.


The morning Semi-Final line-ups are pictured below. In the first semifinal Mairi Pollock (Craigmillar Park) against Ruth Brown (Mortonhall) and in the second semifinal Karen Ballantyne (Craigmillar Park) against Morag Wardrop (Turnhouse).

 All smiles on the first tee on a dry, still morning - just perfect for golf!
 Mairi Pollock recorded a 2 up win over  Ruth Brown in the first of the morning Semi-Finals in a very closely contested match which was real nip and tuck for most of the way round, never more than a hole in it.  Both Mairi and Ruth birdied the par 5 fifteenth hole to keep the match all square followed by another half on the sixteenth.  Mairi took advantage of a wayward tee shot from Ruth at the  short seventeenth hole and then holed a good putt on the eighteenth to ensure that the match was finished in regulation.  
In the other Semi-Final,  defending Champion Karen Ballantyne won by a margin of 6&5. Karen established an early lead with wins at the first three holes, then winning the fifth and sixth followed by birdieing the ninth to turn 6 up. Karen recorded a lot of solid pars whilst Morag's ball just didn't seem to want the bottom of the cup .... with the exception of a fine birdie at the long eleventh hole. However, Karen's steady play saw the match finish at the thirteenth.
The Final is therefore an all Craigmillar Park contest between Mairi and Karen, pictured below before teeing off:

Tuesday, 21 July 2015


The Semi-Finals and Final of our ESVLGA Championship take place on Saturday 25th July at Haddington Golf Club, and spectators will be very welcome. The semifinal line-up is now known:
10 a.m. Mairi Pollock  (Craigmillar Park)  vs  Ruth Brown  (Mortonhall)
10.07 a.m.   Karen Ballantyne (Craigmillar Park) vs Morag Wardrop (Turnhouse)

In order to reach this stage of the Championship Draw, the story of the quarter-finals was as follows:

Mairi Pollock came through a very close  semifinal against Dulcie Barnes (Gullane Ladies). There was never much in this match  with both players scoring well and a lot of halved holes.  Dulcie was the first to win a hole (at the 6th) with the 8th and 9th holes being exchanged, leaving Dulcie one up at the turn. Mairi won the 12th to take it back to all square and then won the 15th and 17th to take her first lead of the match and progress to the semifinals. Mairi's next opponent is Ruth Brown who had a more comfortable quarter-final win against Cynthia Guthrie (Gullane Ladies) by the margin of    6 & 5.

On the other side of the draw, a very close tussle between Karen Ballantyne, our defending Champion, and Anne Brownie (Gullane Ladies) went all the way to the 18th green.  The first few holes were halved in par before Karen eased to a lead of three after nine holes. Karen made an excellent par save at the 10th after being in the fairway bunker off the tee to halve the hole and Anne failed to capitalise on a good position at the par 3 14th hole to remain three down. This seemed to spur Anne on as she won the next three holes to level the match standing on the 18th tee only to see her putt narrowly fail to drop on the 18th green, leaving Karen to hole hers and secure the 1 up win.  Karen's opponent  is Morag Wardrop who won her quarter final against Pamela Williamson of Baberton. This tie started off very evenly balanced and was nip and tuck for the first eight holes before Morag won five holes in a row  to go dormie five up. In deteriorating weather ( i.e. heavy rain!!) and with a sore wrist, Pamela conceded the tie to Morag and both players were relieved to get out of the downpour!!!

The Final will be played at 3pm. Good luck to all the semi-finalists.