Sunningdale Foursomes victory still sinking in for Lily May Humphreys
For Lily May Humphreys the celebrations for her 18th birthday could not have kicked off any better than by winning the 86th Sunningdale Foursomes on Friday.
Playing with fellow Essex county player William Percival for the first ever time, they fought their way through a field containing former major winners and esteemed professionals at the four-day event in Berkshire.
Great Cornard-based Humphreys, who trains at Stoke-by-Nayland Golf Club is in what might be her last season on the amateur circuit, having won last year’s Welsh Ladies Amateur Open Champion, Irish Women’s Amateur Champion and coming runner-up in the English Women’s Amateur Open.
But she admits it was a surreal experience playing in a competition with such names as Dame Laura Davies (four time Major winner), Sandy Lyle (two Majors) and Charley Hull (LPGA Tour event winner).
And winning the event was certainly not something she expected.
“It was a surprise. We just ended up getting to the final and winning it,” she said.
“I went into it feeling like I was hitting the ball pretty good and it felt like I started hitting it better as the week went on.
“It is a very big event and very prestigious. It is definitely one to win as everyone knows about it.
“It is just about starting to sink in that I have won it.”
Playing with Percival (Orsett GC), the pair had to come through seven matches, culminating in a one hole success over Ben Holden and Roger Chapman in front of a crowd on Friday, add their names to a list of famous winners at Sunningdale.
And England Women’s player Humphreys, who had only played in the competition once before, admits they had to ride their luck a bit along the way.
“We won 3&2 sometimes,” she said. “We were three up through five and then went to all-square through 10 so we went close to thinking we had given it all away. But we managed to finish the back nines well.”
She said the coronvarius pandemic has left her without any forthcoming events to play, leading her to practise where she can in the meantime.
SportsAid Lunch Club helps Humphreys
Humphreys was presented with a SportsAid grant of £1,000 by former England Netball Captain Ama Agbeze at the latest Ipswich Sporting Lunch Club event at Wherstead Park near Ipswich.
She said: “travelling nationally and internationally to play golf is really expensive. I am so grateful to SportsAid for supporting me again. It gives me great confidence to be the best I can be and hopefully, one day, reach the very top of the sport.”
To date SportsAid Suffolk has raised and distributed more than £250,000 to young people in the county.
The next lunch is due to take place on Friday, September 25 with ex-England footballer Paul Merson guest of honour. Any businesses wishing to attend should email email@example.com for information.
More by this authorRussell Claydon