YOUNG Samantha Taylor has scored a major triumph by winning the Northumberland Girls Junior Matchplay Championship.
The 13-year-old from Parklands Golf Club in Newcastle only played her first round of medal golf in September 2007 when she had just received a 36 handicap.
One year later she was down to 21 and during the last three weeks has been cut further to 14.
She achieved a three shot reduction at the Qualifiers for the Ladies Championship and went through to the first 16 matchplay event.
She was beaten by Alyssa Balding of Parklands by the slender margin of 2&1.
Later the same week, she went to Wallsend (with her new handicap) and won the Matchplay Championship, beating ten handicapper Nicola Haynes of Gosforth Park Ladies 2&1, having recovered from a three-hole deficit earlier in the match. But for a strange twist of fate, Samantha may not have qualified for the match play stages at all as another player should have taken the final qualifying spot but forgot to sign her card.
Samantha started playing golf after enjoying watching it on TV
Her grandad bought some books, and started coaching her, though he had never held a club in his life.
Together they have achieved great things, although Samantha now warrants and receives some county coaching.
She is also an active member of Tynemouth Diving Club and is something of a sporting all-rounder, also enjoying ice skating, running, football and hockey at youth level.