France’s Emma Grechi clinched a maiden LET Access Series victory with a three-shot win at Cleydael. Grechi began the day in a tie for second on –4 but pulled clear of the field with a second three-under round of 69 on the Belgian course. The victory is her first in professional golf having turned pro two years ago and the 21-year-old was thrilled with her victory in Aartselaar:
“I can’t explain at this moment. It feels amazing. My dad was a professional in cycling and he won one or two competitions and now I’ve done the same - so it’s crazy! It means everything. I’m so happy I want to cry!”
Grechi put in a strong showing at the Jabra Ladies Open in May, finishing T12 in the dual-ranking Ladies European Tour and LET Access Series event, which gave her the confidence to push on to better finishes on the Tour:
“I had a good competition in Evian and so I saw that I could be in the top-5. And I tried to do my best since, and this week it was amazing.”
The French starlet looked comfortable on the greens throughout the event and sunk some crucial pressure putts at critical points in the round where others around her struggled with some tricky final day pin positions. Grechi, who also plays on the Ladies European Tour, thanked her coach for some wise words before her winning round:
“I think my putting was very good this week. My driving was not so good, but I put some putts in, so you make more birdies and it’s easier. It was very hard on the last nine holes because my driving was very hard, and I was a little bit scared. But I was focused on what I had to do and what my coach said this morning. He told me just to play well and have fun. If you are happy to play, you will play well!”
Overnight leader Samantha Giles fell back in the final round with a +3 round of 75 leaving the 24-year-old on –3 for the tournament. A costly double-bogey at the fifteenth saw the end of the Englishwoman’s challenge but despite a tough final showing at Cleydael, Giles will be optimistic for the future having recorded an impressive top-5 finish just two weeks after returning from a serious surfing injury.
Three players ended in a tie for second, three shots adrift of Grechi on –4. Laura Gomez Ruiz, who last week took the title at the Montauban Ladies Open, put in another excellent performance on the Tour, with a final round of 70 capping another fine week for the Spaniard.
Experienced Scot Jane Turner climbed ten places from T12 on day two, with a three-under 69 on the final day to move to four-under for the tournament, whilst Moroccan amateur Ines Laklelech showed once again that she is a force to be reckoned with on the LET Access Series circuit with a third consecutive round under-par in Saturday’s play.
Next week, the LET Access Series heads to Brittany, France, for the Saint Malo Golf Mixed Open, which will feature LET Access Series and Alps Tour players. There are very few events of this nature in golf, with the pioneering event offering €45,000 to players of both Tours.