The 17-year-old, who sealed the title with a 15ft birdie putt on the 15th, is the first British winner since 2001. “It feels awesome to win this,” she said afterwards.
Kelly, an England girl international, made a shaky start to the final and was five down after five holes. However, she steadied herself and halved three holes before winning the 9th to go back to four down.
Henni extended her lead again on the 11th but Kelly showed her fighting spirit with an eagle three on the 12th, where she hit a three wood to15ft, and a birdie on the long 13th.
It narrowed the deficit to three holes but Henni made certain of the title with a winning birdie three on the 15th.
Kelly, 15, is a member of the English Ladies’ Golf Association’s U18 squad. Pat Smillie, ELGA’s national junior coach, said: “Kelly got off to a slow start and Henni was playing very well. But Kelly rallied well, her head never went down and she was a credit to herself.”
Henni is a past winner of the Welsh open strokeplay championship. Both players are former English U13 and U15 champions.
Fourth is no good enough