JESSICA HALL has become the youngest winner of the Durham County Ladies Championship in 92 years of competition.

The Bishop Auckland Golf Club teenager claimed the title at the age of just 15 years and two months to set a new record for a Championship first played for in 1922.

Hall, from Witton-le-Wear, County Durham, defeated Beamish Park's Natasha Martin 4&2 to bring an end to three days of enthralling golf at Darlington Golf Club.

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After two initial rounds of strokeplay, Hall was one of 16 golfers which progressed to the matchplay on Saturday morning.

That was reduced to eight for further matchplay action the following day and Hall had to battle her way through a gruelling semi-final. She was five down after nine but somehow fought back to clinch a place in the final by winning at the 19th hole. She went into the final and defeated Martin.

Hall, who had her father Graham on her bag and plays off a handicap of four, now holds the same trophy the Marquis of Londonderry presented in 1922.

She plays in the WPGA at Altrincham today and is developing nicely as part of the England Under-16 coaching squad for the North-East under coaches JJ Valley and Brian Ross at Matfen Hall.

Durham Ladies Championship results: Champion: Jessica Hall (Bishop Auckland); Runner-up: Natasha Martin (Beamish Park); Leading Qualifier: Rebecca McGinley (Wearside) 152; Leading Junior: Alexandra Stevenson (Beamish Park) 156; Second Qualifier: Faye Sanderson (Heworth) 153; Best Nett Score: Alexandra Stevenson (Beamish Park)146; Semi-Finalists: Rebecca McGinley (Wearside); Lesley Jennings (South Moor).

THE LATEST round of the MasterKey Series is being hosted by Whickham Golf Club on Friday, May 16. Entries can be made online or by telephone from anyone who would like to play.

It comprises of a mini-Ryder Cup of three games in one round. Six holes of foursomes, six holes fourball better ball and six holes of singles (aggregate scores to count) stableford.

The day is open to men, ladies or mixed teams of two. Ladies will receive additional courtesy shots. The price is just £16 per pair.

Whickham also have a couple of places left on the Hadrian Healthcare Pro-Am on Friday, May 23. For further information call (0191) 4881576.

RICHMOND won the latest North-East Rabbits Golf Association southern section. There was brilliant weather, excellent fairways and greens which made for some good scoring on the day.

Richmond recorded 246 points with KP Club second on 234 and Bedale third just two points further back.

The top scorers on the day were Steve Cowie (KP Club ) on 42 and Darren Forrest (Bedale) was two behind. Bill Barnett (Ripon) had 39 along with Thirsk and Northallerton's Trevor Bennett.