Devon golfers Margaret Jeffs and Val Nock scored a narrow one point victory in the latest regional final of the PING Women’s Four Ball Better Ball Tournament of England 2008.

The pair from Newton Abbot (Stover) Golf Club beat stiff winds and sharp showers to notch up 41 points at Bowood Park in North Cornwall.

“We’ve never played the course before but we gelled together really well,” said Margaret, who plays off 10. “We’ve been playing together for a long time and we do dovetail well.”

They led seven pairs who qualified for the grand final of the competition at the Marriott Forest of Arden Hotel, Golf and Country Club on October 7. The tournament is run by the English Women’s Golf Association.   

The qualifiers, who all scored 37 points or better, all win a pair of ECCO shoes and a PING Collection sweater to wear at the final. Margaret and Val also each won a PING golf bag.

“We’ve never played in a national final before and we are very excited to be going to the Forest of Arden,” said Val, who is a 24-handicapper. She defied an ankle problem, which will require surgery next month, to play her part in the pairing.

Margaret commented: “I am really pleased to get through to the grand final  for Val because she’s going to be out of action for a few months.”

They came in towards the end of the day and knocked local golfers, Sara Taylor and Lin Downer, off the top of the leaderboard. The Lanhydrock pair were out in the first group and set the pace with a score of 40 points which included a blob on the first hole.

“It was a good score, but we left a few out there” said Sara, who plays off six. However, they both also contributed a birdie to the card: Lin, who plays off  22, scored four points with her birdie four on the fifth. Sara signed off with  birdie four on the long 18th, which she reached in two.

“The wind was definitely a factor and, after all the recent bad weather, the course definitely played its full length, but it was in excellent condition,” added Sara, who plays for the Cornwall second team.   

They were almost caught by another pair from the Newton Abbott area. Jo Fisher and Alison Davies, from Dainton Park both three-putted the 18th and had to settle for 39 points. But they enjoyed a successful partnership with Alison playing solidly and allowing Jo to go for the score, armed with her new PING Rhapsody driver.

They were among three pairs who scored 39 points, followed by one pair on 38 while the final qualifiers won through on countback on 37 points.

41 pts Margaret Jeffs & Val Nock (Newton Abbott, Stover)
40 Sara Taylor & Lin Downer (Lanhydrock)
39 Sue Stannard & Dee Wood (Crane Valley), Lynn Saget & Georgina Evans (Carlyon Bay); Jo Fisher & Alison Davies (Dainton Park).
38 Meg Godfrey & Sue Jones (St Enedoc)
37 Amanda Walker & Chris Grover (Dudsbury)
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