Hall tastes success with Ricoh Women's British Open glory at Royal Lytham and St Annes
England's Georgia Hall produced a brilliant final round to win her first major title in the Ricoh Women's British Open at Royal Lytham and St Annes.
Hall, who had never previously tasted victory on the Ladies European Tour or LPGA Tour, carded six birdies in a closing 67 to finish on 17 under par, two shots ahead of Thailand’s Pornanong Phatlum.
The 22-year-old from Bournemouth is just the third home winner of the event since it became a major in 2001, following in the footsteps of Karen Stupples (2004) and Catriona Matthew (2009).
And fittingly she did so with her father Wayne acting as her caddie, having named his daughter in honour of Nick Faldo’s Masters triumph at Augusta, Georgia, in 1996.
Phatlum began the day with a one-shot lead over Hall and made a brilliant start with four birdies in the first six holes to double her advantage, even though Hall also birdied the first, fourth and sixth.
However, an errant drive on the eighth led to a bogey for the 28-year-old and a one-shot lead.
Hall kept it that way thanks to a superb par save on the ninth after finding a greenside bunker with her tee shot.
Both players had a chance to birdie the 13th, and after Phatlum missed her attempt, Hall took full advantage of being on a similar line to make the perfect read and hole from 10 feet.
That took Hall into a tie for the lead and the 22-year-old saved par from a greenside bunker on the next to remain tied with her playing partner on 16 under with four holes to play.
They birdied the par-five 15th after Hall’s eagle attempt from 15 feet caught the edge of the hole and stayed out, but it did not take long for Hall to get her nose in front thanks to another birdie on the next.
A thrilling contest was effectively decided on the 17th.
Phatlum found sand off the tee and compounded the error by three-putting for a double bogey, leaving Hall with a three-shot lead and just one hole to play.
It meant that although Hall made a bogey on the 18th, her first of the day, she managed to seal victory by two shots.