Germany’s Aline Krauter held her nerve to claim the biggest title of her career after winning the 117th Women’s Amateur Championship at West Lancashire.
The 20-year-old fought back from three down after the opening four holes to defeat Englishwoman Annabell Fuller, 18, by one-hole in a dramatic 18-hole final. It continued feel good success for German golf after Sophia Popov’s AIG Women’s Open triumph last weekend.
On links land along the River Mersey, Krauter – ranked 71st on the World Amateur Golf Ranking® (WAGR®) – emerged victorious from an international field of almost 100 players at the renowned venue.
Krauter can now look forward to exciting opportunities, with exemptions into the AIG Women’s Open and, traditionally, the US Women’s Open, The Evian Championship and Augusta National Women's Amateur Championship.
She joins a roll of honour that includes former Women’s Amateur victors including Anna Nordqvist (2008), Georgia Hall (2013), Céline Boutier (2015), Leona Maguire (2017) and her German countrywoman, Leonie Harm (2018).
Krauter said, “It’s my biggest win, 100 per cent. I won the German Girls in 2016 and then I’ve played decently in some college tournaments in the US but not been close in one.
“I felt under control out there. I’m not sure what did the trick, but I was quite unphased on the course which I think helped me in the wind and the conditions. It was so fun to play in the final.
In her semi-final, Krauter who had beaten Scotland's Hannah Darling in the first round lost the opening hole to defending champion Emily Toy (who had beaten Scotland's Chloe Goadby in the 2nd round at the 20th hole ) but then reeled off three birdies in four holes to lead two up after six. Toy, who was seeking to become the first player to retain the title since Louise Stahle in 2005, again showed the battling instincts which have typified her week to level at the turn. They exchanged holes at the 11th and 13th, before Krauter secured match-winning birdies at the 15thand 16th to win 2&1.
Despite the sunshine, the breezy conditions remained a challenge and Fuller certainly adjusted to the conditions as she raced to a three-up lead after five holes against fellow 18-year-old Emilie Alba Paltrinieri, the 2016 Girls’ Amateur champion.
Paltrinieri clawed a hole back at the 6th but Fuller then reeled off four holes in a row, helped by back-to-back birdies at the 7th and 8th, to go six up after 10 holes. Paltrinieri arrowed an approach to three feet at the short 12th to keep her hopes alive, but Fuller ended proceedings with a half at the 14th to seal a 5&4 success.
It represented another notable success for Fuller after defeating another Italian player, the world number five Alessia Nobilio, in the quarter-finals.
Final scores from the final can be found here.
Read the full report From the R&A Website
The championship, which was safely played as a closed-door event this week due to the COVID-19 pandemic, is contested next year at Kilmarnock (Barassie) in Ayrshire, Scotland from 8 – 12 June.