No time for siestas as Grant & Byrne descend on Spain

Bernie McGuire
Bernie McGuire

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 Paula Grant / Image from Cashman Photography

The Spanish International Ladies’ Amateur Championship gets underway tomorrow at Zaudin Golf Club where Lisburn’s Paula Grant and Douglas’ Sara Byrne fly the flag for Ireland.

Only two months into the new season, Grant already has two International events and an ILGU Warm Weather Training week under her belt despite juggling a locum job to go with it. Following a top-15 finish at the South American Amateur in Chile, Grant continued her consistent form finishing tied for 17th in the Portuguese International Ladies Amateur.

This week, the format turns to matchplay where both GB&I and European Vagliano Trophy selectors are sure to be keeping watch. Following her Curtis Cup debut last June, you can be sure Grant is determined to be in the frame again this year when the matches take place at Royal St. George’s.

Meanwhile Byrne begins her 2019 season at Zaudin having surpassed her own expectations last year as she was crowned Irish Women’s Close Champion and both the Irish Golf Writers and Irish Golfer Magazine female amateur of the year. The Cork teenager, who has verbally committed to the University of Miami in 2020, will be concentrating on her fifth-year studies for the coming months, however her focus is firmly on the challenge at hand this week in Spain.

World Ranked number 4 Frida Kinhult from Sweden, who captured the Copa SM La Reina on the last two occasions, is currently studying in the United States and won’t be competing this week. However, a strong Swedish contingent, including Linn Grant and 2017 Irish Girls’ Open Stroke Play Champion Ingrid Lindblad, will be aiming to make it three-in-a-row while their fellow countrywoman is away.

The event starts tomorrow, Wednesday Feb 27th – March 3rd at Zaudin Golf Club.

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