Nicola Slater keen to produce repeat show at Yorkshire Ladies Championship

WOODSOME HALL’S Nicola Slater will defend her Yorkshire ladies championship at Alwoodley, starting tomorrow, hoping to see off a very strong field.

Nicola Slater.
Nicola Slater.

Slater, a final year student at Stirling University and a former English match play champion, has to be in with a strong shout. She has already shown fine form this year by winning the Scottish student championships.

Hoping to go one better than in 2021 to deny Slater a double is last year’s runner-up Hannah Holden, from Huddersfield GC.

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A number of the Yorkshire team who were victorious at Northern Counties match week last June are also teeing it up, with entrants first facing 36 holes of qualifying stroke play and the top 16 then going through to the decisive match play stage on Saturday and Sunday.

Mia Eales Smith (Lindrick), Rachel Taylor (Huddersfield) and Beth Norton (The Oaks) will all be looking to put themselves in the hunt to be crowned champion for the first time.

These youngsters will also have to get the better of some past winners who can never be discounted, including Ganton’s assistant secretary Emma Brown, an ex-Curtis Cup player with three championships to her name, at Lindrick, Hallamshire and Bradford in 2000, 2002 and 2013 respectively. She heads to Alwoodley having won the Yorkshire Veterans Ladies Championship at Richmond last week.

Megan Garland (Selby) won three times in four years having claimed her first crown at Huddersfield in 2016 and she and Ganton’s Sara Garbutt – the 2007 and 2010 champion – remain highly talented and capable.

The championship will feature a number of Yorkshire Veterans contenders who are all still performing at a high level. Richmond’s Karen Jobling and Julie Wheeldon (Wakefield) have both represented England and add further quality to the Alwoodley line-up.

For those looking beyond the expected contenders, Yorkshire captain Alison Tracey has suggested it will be worth keeping an eye on Aaliyah Hryniewieka-Irwin (Huddersfield) and Grace Lambert, of Hessle, two rising stars chasing county glory.