Yorkshire golf: Amanda Hill climbs quickly to win player of year award at Huddersfield

Player of the year Amanda Hill with Huddersfield lady captain Liz Roberts (Pictures: Alison Tracey).

Player of the year Amanda Hill with Huddersfield lady captain Liz Roberts (Pictures: Alison Tracey).

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AMANDA HILL has been named Huddersfield ladies' player of the year - lifting the Pat Wrightson Trophy just four years after taking up golf.

Her main hobby had been photography until she retired from her job as a Detective Inspector in 2012 when husband Ian, this year's Rabbits' Captain at Fixby, was shocked by her declaration that she wanted to take up golf.

Prize-winners at Huddersfield ladies' annual dinner. Back rwo, l-r: Cherrie Myers, Lynne Saxton, Claire Roberts, Maxine Rowlands, Lesley Senior, Pat Poole and Amanda Hill. Front row, l-r: Sue Ramsbottom, June Sowden and Mary Durrans.

Prize-winners at Huddersfield ladies' annual dinner. Back rwo, l-r: Cherrie Myers, Lynne Saxton, Claire Roberts, Maxine Rowlands, Lesley Senior, Pat Poole and Amanda Hill. Front row, l-r: Sue Ramsbottom, June Sowden and Mary Durrans.

"I had previously had absolutely no interest in golf whatsoever and I don't know where the idea came from, but I decided to give golf a go," she recalled.

"After he got over the shock, Ian suggested that I go for lessons from the start so that I didn't pick up his 'bad habits' - his words, not mine.

"Ian told his best mate, Mich Dearman, what I was thinking of doing and Mich immediately recommended (Huddersfield club professional) Alex Keighley for lessons."

Husband Ian was a member of Low Laithes, but when Amanda became hooked on the sport they both joined Huddersfield in September 2013.

Her handicap fell by a shot to 29 when she won the Ladies England Golf medal and Challenge Trophy qualifier in May with a net 71. She went on to be runner-up in the latter competition.

A month later she annexed the Second Division Trophy medal, again with a net 71, and her handicap dropped a further two shots to 27.

In July she came first in the Second Division on Day One of Lady Captain's Day and with yet another net 71, in the Huddersfield Spoon, she claimed victory in the Division Two category after which her handicap fell to 26.

A runner-up spot in August's Bronze Salver was followed a month later by her handicap dropping to 25 after a familiar score of net 71 in the October Spoon.

Hill also savoured victory in the Summer Eclectic and with partner Pat Poole won the Ladies Foursomes trophy, which has put them through to a national competition next year.

"Alex is a fantastic golf coach and I certainly would not have made the progress I have without her expert tuition and support," said Hill. "She is such an asset to Huddersfield GC and a role model for all golfers."

Hill received her award as player of the year as more than 100 ladies attended the annual prize presentation dinner at Fixby.

It was attended by just one male, guest speaker Edmund Thornhill, whose family own Fixby Hall and much of the land surrounding the course.

He spoke of 'girl power' and how some of the Huddersfield members were testament to this in action, making reference to Sue Johnson, the first female president of the club, octogenarian Mary Durrans, who won the Lady Captain's prize this year, and Ann Crowther, whose late husband Richard had worked closely with the Thornhill family.

Vicki Wimpenny, vice captain, conducted ceremonies and lady captains from other local clubs, including Woodsome Hall, Meltham and Bradley Hall, were in attendance.

Over 20 ladies were awarded prizes with the coveted Diamond Jubilee and Florence Pickles trophies both going to Alison Graham.

Young up-and-coming players Charlotte Heath and Jess Hosking both enjoyed successful seasons.

Heath lifted the Durran Trophy, the Horden Casket and the Green Trophy while Hosking won the Armitage Bowl for the greatest reduction in handicap, dropping from 28 to 15 in one season, and the Carrie Barker Trophy.

June Sowden also had a fruitful season and was presented with the Calcutta Trophy, Malcolm Lee Trophy and the Silver Salver.

Lady captain Liz Roberts handed out the prizes to the winners, who were:

Winter 11-hole: Eva Lambert; Frozen Fingers: Claire Roberts; Florence Pickles: Alison Graham; Diamond Jubilee: Alison Graham; Ladies Foursomes: Amanda Hill and Pat Poole; 24-30 Handicap: Sue Ramsbottom; Rabbits Trophy: Lynne Saxton; Senior Trophy: Lynne Saxton; Junior Trophy: Georgia Holden; Summer 11-hole: Kathryn O'Hara; Challenge Trophy: Lesley Senior; Carrie Barker: Jess Hosking; Midsummer Bowl: Eva Lambert; Wee Vase: Sandra Paul; Second Division Trophy: Jane Ali; Four Club: Cherrie Myers; Fourball Better Ball: Maxine Rowlands and Helen Byrne; Veterans Trophy: Christine Barnett; Senior Veterans Trophy: Sheila Smith; Grannie Trophy: Christine Barnett; Putting Cup: Hannah Holden; Millennium Bowl: Mary Durrans; Harry Huth: Pat Wrightson; Silver Salver: June Sowden; Bronze Salver: Elaine Pasiczynk; Nine-hole: Julia Butterfield; Calcutta: June Sowden; The Durrans Trophy: Charlotte Heath; Stableford Trophy: Christine Barnett; Hordern Casket: Charlotte Heath; LGU Quaiche: Elaine Jenkinson; Sue Johnson Trophy: Jane Ali, Meg Brierley, Best Gross: Hannah Holden; Armitage Bowl: Jess Hosking; Green Trophy: Charlotte Heath; Pat Wrightson: Amanda Hill.

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