Scotland’s Carly Booth ended a seven year wait for her third Ladies European Tour title with victory in the Tipsport Czech Ladies Open, a dual-ranking event with the LET Access Series.
Booth carded rounds of 68, 69 and 70 for a 54-hole total of 207, nine-under-par, at Golf Resort Karlštejn to finish a stroke ahead of Finland’s Sanna Nuutinen, France’s Anais Meysonnier and English pair Charlotte Thompson and Hayley Davis.
Germany’s Olivia Cowan ended in sixth place and amateur Patricie Mackova was the leading Czech player in a share of 12th.
Booth won both of her previous titles in 2012, at the Scottish and Swiss Opens, and was overwhelmed with emotion when she realised that she had posted the winning total. After completing her final round, she asked the tour photographer what the leading score was and then how many people were on it. He said, “Just you: you’ve won,” and she burst into tears.
Her topsy-turvy round included seven birdies and five bogeys and she asked her caddie, Andy Carter, the golf professional at Jumeirah Golf Estates in Dubai, “Have I just played golf, or been at Alton Towers? I never want to go on a rollercoaster again.”
She began the final round tied for the lead with Nuutinen on seven-under-par but had a nervy start, hitting her first drive right, out of bounds and then dropping three shots in her first four holes.
However, she produced a gutsy fightback with brilliant birdies on the fifth, seventh and ninth holes, to make the turn in level par, regaining a share of the lead.
At the fifth, she made a birdie putt from eight feet and then on the par-5 seventh, she holed a massive left to right breaking putt from 20 feet, before hitting a punch wedge in to five feet at the ninth and converting the putt.
She took the outright advantage after birdies on the 11th and 13th holes, playing a 5-iron shot into within six feet of the flag on the 11th and then chipping in on the long 13th, but hit a wall at 14 with a bogey, followed by another on the 15th, where she made another great up and down from 54 yards.
From that point, the game plan was to birdie each of the final three holes and she managed two further gains, on the 16th and 17th, before finishing with a par on the last. “It was probably just as well I didn’t know what the situation was,” said Booth.
“I’m a little bit flabbergasted by the whole day. I played good golf and I really had to dig deep in the final round. I’m overwhelmed with happiness,” she said.
“It’s been seven years, so it’s a bit of a shock. Not knowing what the winning score was, I didn’t know anything about the leader board and I made a really solid par in the end.
“It’s a country that I love to visit, I’ve had some great results here in the Czech Republic in Pro-Ams and to win the tournament means more than anything. After seven years, finally, to get another victory, it’s amazing.”
Booth, originally from Comrie in Perthshire, said that she was heading home to Manchester the same evening, where she would celebrate over the Bank Holiday with her friends.