After her opening round of 76, Crafter played the last 54 holes of the event in even par and although she finished four shots behind the winner, Helen Alfredsson, it was an outstanding effort for a player whose last competitive event was seven months ago.
The 63 year old former winner of the Women’s Australian Open and twice a winner of the Australian Ladies Masters in addition to a win on the LPGA Tour, recovered from two early bogeys today to work her way back into contention.
A bogey at the 17th essentially put paid to any winning chance but to finish 4th against a field which included the likes of Juli Inkster and Laura Davies and other former LPGA Tour stars was full of merit.
Crafter who continues to work in television commentary when the opportunity arises was delighted to have played as well as she had.
“You can never underestimate the value of competitive experience, and day-to-day playing," said Crafter earlier in the week.
“The last tournament I played in was the Senior LPGA in October. That's seven months ago. I mean, I'm delighted. I prepared as best I could.”
Crafter’s fellow Australian Wendy Doolan, now a successful teaching professional in the US after an LPGA Tour career which included three LPGA Tour victories, also did well to finish 11th, more especially as it came after an opening round of 81.
Swede, Alfredsson won by two over Juli Inkster and Trish Johnson with Crafter and American Michelle Redman another shot back.
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