Friday, November 16, 2007

Melissa Reid, 20, has won the Daily Telegraph's Women's Amateur Golfer of the Year award after a season in which she captured the British Women's Amateur Stroke-Play championship along with the silver medal at the Ricoh Women's British Open.
Reid, pictured right, also won two of the season's other premier stroke-play titles with her three rounds in the Helen Holm Trophy at Troon in May including a breathtaking 10-under-par 63 over Troon Portland. In a year when the women amateurs were returning more scores in the 60s than ever before, Reid also had a closing 68 against the par of 76 over the Old Course, St Andrews, as she won the St Rule Trophy.
It was Reid's performance in the Ricoh which told her the time was right to turn professional. With a wrist injury sustained after the British stroke-play having left her a little rusty, she failed to make it through the European Tour's qualifying school.

However, such are her amateur credentials that tour sponsors have been falling over each other to issue invitations for 2008. So far, it looks as though she could be playing in a minimum of a dozen tournaments.
Reid, who has been working with Sir Clive Woodward on bringing a more scientific approach to bear on her golf, said that she was thrilled to have won the Daily Telegraph's award. "I won the Daily Telegraph Girls' Championship in 2003 and it's great to have graduated to this," said the 20-year-old Reid. "I've loved everything to do with my amateur career."
Henrietta Brockway, who became the first player from the UK to win the British Girls' championship since Clare Queen in 2001, is the recipient of the Telegraph's second female amateur golf award, the Joyce Wethered Trophy.
Traditionally this prize, which was shared last year by Sally Watson and Carly Booth, goes to a young player who is combining golf with education. Brockway, 17, has given up on the education side of things but that has not stopped her from setting a first-class example to her peers in how to organise her golfing life.

Where other teenagers who play the game full-time can often end up frittering away their time, Brockway has a rigid daily routine which involves being in the gym at seven every morning.
In practising, she concentrates on different aspects of her play morning and afternoon.

At this time of the year, she has to sign off from her practice sessions at the Remedy Oak club near her Wiltshire home at four in the afternoon. In the summer, she will often be hard at work until seven.
Brockway's main ambition is to be a member of the GB and Ireland side in the 2008 Curtis Cup. She may turn professional at the end of the year, but she has not ruled out the possibility of returning to her studies at some point.

"The great thing about studying, which I love, is that you can go back to it at any time," said Brockway. "At one stage, I had my heart set on going to St Andrews University but playing serious golf takes up a lot of time and I didn't see how I could make both work."
Brockway, an avid bookworm and one who is currently tucked into a thriller, The Interpretation of Murder by Jed Rubenfeld, was off to read about the late Joyce Wethered, whose award she has collected.

Wethered, who bagged five successive English women's championships in the 1920s, was hailed by the legendary Bobby Jones as the best golfer, man or woman, he had ever seen.

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