Ashleigh in Sight of 1st Victory
Paired with the overnight Catalonia Ladies Masters leader England’s Kirsty Taylor on Saturday, South Africa’s Ashleigh Simon played well enough to have shared the overnight lead, had it not been for a two stroke penalty.
Simon, who turned 18 in May, carded nine birdies, two bogeys and a triple at the par-four 12th hole, where she was awarded the penalty for hitting the sand in a fairway bunker.
“I hit my drive left into the bunker and I had a very awkward stance. I hit my six-iron and duffed it,” the unruffled Simon explained after reaching the clubhouse.
“It rolled back into the bunker and I proceeded to hit the ground without realising. The ball was still in the bunker so I called a two shot penalty on myself. I wasn’t too disappointed, as I actually would have made a five.
“From there I went birdie, birdie, birdie and got it straight back, so I was pretty happy with my fight back. It’s my first time in contention out here, so I’ll take it as a learning experience,” said the rookie professional.
England’s Kirsty Taylor shot a three-under-par 69, to establish a one stroke lead ahead of the final round at Club de Golf Masia Bach, near Barcelona.
The 35-year-old, who posted a 68 to lead by two after the first round, moved to seven-under 137 with Wales’ Becky Brewerton and South Africa’s Ashleigh Simon both carding 68 to earn a share of second.
Taylor dropped a shot at the third hole but carded four birdies with two on the front nine and two on the back nine.
“I enjoyed the day. I enjoyed playing with Ashleigh. She’s a great golfer,” said Taylor, who is seeking her second victory in 13 years as a professional after her sole Tour victory at the 2005 Wales Ladies Championship.
Brewerton began slowly with a double bogey at the third hole when she lost her ball off the tee but she responded with a further bogey and seven birdies.
“It wasn’t the best way to start but without the wind there were lots of birdie chances. I started to play really well,” said the 24-year-old. “I was hitting the irons straight at the pins and putting well so everything was good.”
England’s Trish Johnson, the recent BMW Ladies Italian Open champion, carded a 69 and moved to fourth place on four-under with three players on three under – Gwladys Nocera (66), Paula Marti (67) and Iben Tinning (69).
England’s Lisa Hall stepped up her bid for a second win in three weeks after a six-under 66, which took her to level par for the tournament. The 39-year-old, who sealed her second Ladies European Tour victory at the Northern Ireland Ladies’ Open, holed-in-one with a seven-iron at the 144-yard par-three fifth hole.
It was her ninth hole-in-one and her second in a professional tournament. All in all she had five birdies, one eagle and a bogey.
Hall said: “It was cool. I holed a long putt on the first for birdie and then I started hitting some good iron shots and on the fourth I hit it just short of the hole.
“I hit a lot of iron shots close and I had some that just missed. I had some good fortune too so it was enjoyable.”
Marti, the best placed Spanish player, said: I’m there fighting for the win so there is no excuse not to come and watch me and the other players. Yesterday the weather was tough but today the conditions were better and the scores were great. Tomorrow I’m hoping for a lot of birdies.”
Catalonia Ladies Masters
Club de Golf Masia Bach
15th – 17th June 2007
Scores at End of Round 2
137 – Kirsty Taylor (ENG) 68 69
138 – Becky Brewerton (WAL) 70 68, Ashleigh Simon (SA) 70 68
140 – Trish Johnson (ENG) 71 69
141 – Gwladys Nocera (FRA) 75 66, Paula Marti (ESP) 74 67, Iben Tinning (DEN) 72 69
142 – Amanda Moltke-Leth (DEN) 74 68, Asa Gottmo (SWE) 74 68, Veronica Zorzi (ITA) 72 70, Nikki Garrett (AUS) 71 71
144 – Lisa Hall (ENG) 78 66, Lora Fairclough (ENG) 76 68
145 – Ludivine Kreutz (FRA) 74 71, Sarah Kemp (AUS) 73 72, Karen Lunn (AUS) 70 75
146 – Karen-Margrethe Juul (DEN) 77 69, Marta Prieto (ESP) 77 69, Ana B Sanchez (ESP) 76 70, Tania Elosegui (ESP) 76 70, Sophie Giquel (FRA) 76 70, Lotta Wahlin (SWE) 73 73
147 – Celeste Troche (PAR) 76 71, Rebecca Coakley (IRE) 76 71
148 – Ana Larraneta (ESP) 81 67, Virginie Auffret (FRA) 76 72, Louise Friberg (SWE) 75 73, Rebecca Hudson (ENG) 74 74
149 – Lynn Brooky (NZ) 73 76
150 – Beatriz Recari (ESP) 81 69, Marina Arruti (ESP) 78 72, Anja Monke (GER) 77 73
151 – Riikka Hakkarainen (FIN) 78 73, Virginie Lagoutte-Clement (FRA) 77 74
152 – Elisa Serramia (ESP) 82 70
153 – Stephanie Arricau (FRA) 77 76, Kirsty S Taylor (ENG) 72 81
155 – Nora Angehrn (SWI) 83 72
156 – Bettina Hauert (GER) 85 71, Sophie Sandolo (ITA) 83 73