By Keith Jackson
Last Updated: 02/07/20 9:41pm
Gemma Dryburgh claimed the third of the Rose Ladies Series events with a one-shot victory over Georgia Hall and Cara Gainer at The Buckinghamshire.
Dryburgh recovered from a rocky start to fire a three-under 69 which proved enough to give her a second professional title, while Charley Hull returned to the top of the Order of Merit as her 71 was one of only seven scores in red figures.
Former Women’s British Open champion Hall looked poised to return a 69 when she birdied 14, 15 and 17, but the Solheim Cup star ran into trouble at the last and ran up a costly bogey six – her second six on the back nine.
Hall’s late mistake saw her finish in a share of second with Gainer, who carded an eagle, three birdies and three bogeys, leaving Dryburgh as the clear winner of the £5,000 first prize.
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The Scot, who had her father Jim on the bag on the day of his wedding anniversary, had to dig deep after she bogeyed two of the first three holes before hitting back with birdies at the fifth and eighth.
She slipped over the card again when she made another mistake at the ninth, but she made the ideal start to the back-nine when she “slam-dunked” her third for an unlikely birdie.
The 27-year-old then made a decisive move with three birdies in four holes from the 13th, and she did well to stay at three under when she holed a crucial 20-foot putt to scramble a par at the 17th.
Dryburgh safely negotiated the par-five 18th to close with a relatively stress-free par, and she looked forward to “lots of drinks” to celebrate both her victory and her parents’ anniversary.
“It is definitely the best win of my pro career as the only other one before was on the ALPG Tour,” said Dryburgh. “It was a good field today and great exposure for the women’s game.
“I didn’t have a very good start but then slam-dunked my third shot at the 10th after being in the bunker, so that was a good start to the back nine.
“I made a few more birdies before holing a reasonable putt at 17 for par. I saw people following me and, on 18, my dad said I had two putts for it. It was a really good back nine.”
Dryburgh, seventh in the opening event at Brokenhurst Manor, jumped to second place in the Order of Merit behind Hull, with Liz Young, one of the driving forces behind the Series, in third ahead of last week’s winner Meg MacLaren.
It was also announced earlier in the day that another event had been added to the Grand Final, which will now commence at North Hants on August 5 before moving on to The Berkshire.
The top 35 and ties will then qualify for the final 18 holes of the Series over the West Course at Wentworth on August 7, when the Order of Merit winner will pocket a cheque for £20,000, courtesy of American Golf.