It’s been a quite a year for amateur golf in Great Britain and we asked some our leading players what were their stand-out moments and also asked them to look ahead to 2024
1) Your best round of the year and why?
I have had many under par rounds this year, but I would say this one enabled me to measure how far I’ve developed as a player, mentally & physically. In the final round of the English Women’s Open Stroke Play at The Manchester GC, I shot a four under par. England Golf always sets their events up to challenge you, not just physically, but also mentally. That week, in the previous three rounds, I’d played well, been under par, until I reached the 14th hole which kept causing issues leading to a few bogeys and a lost ball. In the final round, I made a small goal before the final round, that I wanted to par or better that hole and all the way in. In that round, I was -2 par on the back 9, and parred all the way in from the 13th. The only bogey I had in that round was on the first. I had also sprained wrist at the time which had been causing issues since the final qualifying for The Open in July after having a fight with the heather, so it was really nice to have a good round to finish off the tournament and my national season, before having to take four weeks off for my wrist to recover fully.
2) Your best shot of the year and why?
I’ve had a lot of good shots this year, however nothing can beat having another hole in one. Last month I had my second hole in one on the second hole at Bury St Edmunds (home club). It’s 130 yards I hit a knock down seven iron to a right back pin with a right-to-left cross wind and absolutely flushed it. It landed five feet short of the pin and bounced straight in the hole. I only had my first hole in one last year, so it was really nice to be able to get another one this year.
3) The best shot you saw and why?
It would have to be one of my good friends. Abbie Symonds holed a 20-foot putt from off the 18th green at Stowmarket GC, while I was playing against her in the final of the Suffolk County Matchplay Championships. It had been a fantastic tussle the whole match with both of us shooting under par and no one being any more than 1up/down all morning. She hadn’t really put a foot wrong the whole match, so on the final hole she drained that putt to win the county title for the first time.
4) Your favourite moment of 2023 (this could be personal or something completely random but golf related)?
I had another really consistent year, this year finishing in two of the majors in the top five having multiple top 10 finishes. But, my favourite moment of the year would have to be winning the Hampshire Rose & the Gold Rose Bowl. I had a bad first round at the Hampshire Rose, which left me a lot of work to do in the final round. However, I came back after lunch and shot a four under par to force a play-off with Herry Ji, who had actually been one of my playing partners all day too. I won on the first extra play-off hole (The 10th), sticking my tee shot to four feet. That put the pressure on Herry to hole a 30-footer up the green for a potential halve.
5) Your hopes and ambitions for 2024?
I won’t be playing in as many national tournaments next year, as I have in the previous two years, due to a reoccurring back issue that keeps flaring up; so that is first priority. However I hope to peak at those events I plan to play in and get some good consistent results with the foundation that I am building through the winter months.
6) One thing you would change about about golf for next season?
One thing you would change about golf for next season. Staying as competitive as possible over the winter and in-between tournaments, so that I can remain sharp and have some good results throughout the whole season.