North Berwick’s Catriona Matthew proved she is still one of the world’s best when she finished joint fifth and earned £72,000 in the Ricoh Women’s British Open at Woburn.
The 2009 champion at Royal Lytham and St Annes was a little disappointed with her closing 73 for nine under par, seven shots behind Thai winner Ariya Jutanugarn, but it was a good warm-up for this month’s Olympic Games in Rio.
“I just need to move up four places for gold,” joked the North Berwick 46-year-old who shot a super 65 on Friday. “I had a couple of slack shots on the front nine and it was just a bit of a struggle from there.
“I’m pretty disappointed with the round but, overall, it’s not too bad. The pins were tighter on the last two days but I definitely think the greens were firmer today.”
A mother of two, husband Graeme was on the bag at Woburn and he will also be caddying at the Olympics.
“It’s very special to have Graeme with me,” she continued. “It’s great fun when he can come out and caddie now because he doesn’t get to do it much and it’s great fun playing in front of the crowd in the last groups.”
Matthew will now spend ten days at home and fly out to Brazil on August 12 to join Team GB’s Charley Hull, Justin Rose and Danny Willett for golf’s reintroduction to the Olympics.
“It’s going to be a huge honour,” she admitted. “It’s something I really wanted to do and this will probably be my only chance.”
Jutanugarn shot a final round 72 for 16 under par and is the first Thai golfer to win a major. She won by three shots from South Korea’s Mirim Lee (73) and American Mo Martin (70).