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ENGLAND’S Meghan MacLaren claimed her first European Tour victory in the Women’s NSW Open in Australia yesterday.
The 23-year-old, from Northamptonshire, went into day four at the top of the leaderboard before carding a closing 71 to finish 10 under par and two shots ahead of her nearest challengers.
Midway through the final round at Coffs Harbour Golf Club, MacLaren held a four-shot lead at 12 under par after holing three birdies before the turn.
She dropped a shot on the seventh but made a 10ft birdie putt on the ninth to hold off US rookie Casey Danielson, who finished in joint second after a round of 66.
MacLaren said that the win felt “incredible,” adding: “I can’t put it into words yet.”
She put in her strongest performance during round three, firing five birdies on the front nine to finish on a stunning 65.
Asked if she felt any nerves going into the final round, she said: “I’d be lying if I said I didn’t. I’ve been in control of my game all week, but coming down the line when you know how quickly things can change in golf, it’s just a relief, to be honest.”
Spain’s Silvia Banon and Norway’s Marita Engzelius joined Danielson in second place to finish on eight under overall.
MacLaren’s compatriot Gabriella Cowley shot a round of 67, which included a birdie-birdie finish, to leave her in 12th place.
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