Leona Maguire eases her way to last 16 at Portstewart

World number one will face Australian Joanna Charlton in last 16 on Friday morning

World number one  Leona Maguire has cruised through to the last 16 of the  Ladies’ British Open Amateur Championship at Portstewart. Photo:  David Cannon/Getty Images

World number one Leona Maguire has cruised through to the last 16 of the Ladies’ British Open Amateur Championship at Portstewart. Photo: David Cannon/Getty Images

 

Leona Maguire cruised in the last 16 of the Ladies’ British Open Amateur Championship after two convincing wins in the match play stages at Portstewart on Thursday.

The world number one beat Sweden’s Martina Edberg by a massive 8&6 in the morning last 64 match.

Having stormed through to top the qualifiers over the previous two days by a six-stroke margin, the 20-year-old Slieve Russell star then seized the early initiative against Edberg by winning three of the first four holes.

She then found herself six up at the turn and won two of the next three holes, finishing six under par for the 12 holes played.

The Ballyconnell ace was soon back out after being paired with Camille Chevalier of France, who herself had recorded a good 6&5 win over Sweden’s Linnea Johansson.

She did provide a tougher test, but ultimately was no match for Maguire who sailed through into Friday morning’s last 16 draw with a 4&3 victory.

Maguire now faces Australian Joanna Charlton for a place in the last eight, and will have extra motivation given it was Charlton who dumped out her twin sister Lisa Maguire in the first round.

Lisa lost three of the first four holes against her Aussie opponent and, despite cutting the deficit to two by the turn, there was no way back as she slipped back to three holes in arrears by the 14 th, eventually losing 4&3.

Charlton then went on to secure her spot in the last 16 with a 3&2 victory over Italian Lucrezia Colombotto Rosso.

Royal County Down teenager Olivia Mehaffey is through to meet Sweden’s Madelene Sagstrom on Friday for a place in the quarter-finals.

Mehaffey saw off England’s Lianna Bailey in her first round match as, comfortably five-up at the turn, she went on to secure a 5&4 victory.

Next up for Mehaffey was another English opponent – Elizabeth Prior of Burhill – and, two-up at the turn and leading by one hole after 14, she went on to secure a 2&1 win.

Also through is Lisburn’s Paula Grant after a 1 up victory over Kim Metraux of Switzerland in her second-round match – battling back having been one down at the turn.

Grant had earlier seen off Israel’s Hadas Libman 4&3 and faces Sweden’s Elin Esborn this morning for a place in the last eight.

However there was heartbreak for Maria Dunne of Skerries, who crashed out on the third extra hole at the hands of Connie Jaffrey of Scotland.

Jessica Carty (Holywood), meanwhile, who looked to be in a promising position in her first-round match against Colombotto Rosso at one up after 14, then lost the next three holes to go down 2&1.

Elsewhere Donaghadee’s Jessica Ross got off to a terrible start in her first-round match with Doris Chan – losing three of the first four holes – before eventually going down 6&5.

Meanwhile Ireland were declared the international team winners, their line-up being Leona Maguire, Olivia Mehaffey and Chloe Ryan, who had a qualifying score of 281 to win by four strokes from Sweden.

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