Danielle McVeigh saved her worst round for last as she came up short in her bid to win her Ladies European Tour card at the final stage of the Lalla Aicha Tour School in Morocco.
The Kilkeel native, who was three shots outside the crucial top 30 and ties entering the decisive fifth round, didn’t make a birdie all day as she closed with a five over 77 on the Al Maaden golf course in Marrakech to finish 66th on three over par. Leaderboard
By making the four-round cut, McVeigh will have a category 9 membership for 2013 as exactly 30 players earned full playing rights on seven under par or better.
Thai amateur Ariya Jutanugarn, 17, claimed the top card with ease just two weeks after her 18 year old sister Moriya tied for top honours at LPGA Q-School.
She shot rounds of 68-70-64-65-69 for a 24-under par total of 336 and a five shot win over Australia’s Nikki Campbell.
Despite precedents, the LPGA denied a petition from then-16-year-old Ariya to join her sister at the LPGA Q-School as players must turn 18 by January 1 to be eligible for qualifying school.
“I’m going to miss her a lot because we have to separate,” Jutanugarn said of her sister. “I have to go with my dad and Moriya will go with my mom.
“I am going to turn pro and I’m really happy I won because it will make me feel confident for my professional career.”
There were scenes of jubilation early on as Maha Haddioui secured her tour card with a final round 67, becoming the first Moroccan golfer to qualify to play on the Ladies European Tour full time.
Young Mexican Margarita Ramos saved the best until last with a five under par 67 to make the top 30 on the number at seven under par.
There was strong representation from South America as Paula Hurtado of Colombia and Maria Salinas of Peru also secured their full cards.
India’s Sharmila Nicollet also made it back onto the LET.
However, several players were disappointed to have missed out on the top 30 including England’s Charley Hull, who shot a final round 76 to end in a share of 36th on four under alongside Cheyenne Woods of the United States who had a final round 70.
Hull, 16, plans to turn professional, while China’s Xi Yu Lin, who is also 16, qualified in fifth position having turned professional a year ago at the age of 15.