Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Gemma Dryburgh's fate highlights flaw in 

NCAA Championships system

(father of Meghan MacLaren)

I wanted to comment briefly on the Kirkwoodgolf  piece on Meghan beating Gemma Dryburgh in a play-off to determine the final
individual place for the final round of the NCAA Championships. Whilst I was (despite being somewhat distracted whilst trying to play mixed foursomes with my wife at the time of the play-off..) delighted that Meg made it through to cap a nine-month period that should place her – for now - beyond the reach of the vagaries of the GB and I Vagliano Trophy team wild-card selection on either side of Hadrian’s Wall, close to Meg’s beloved still-just-in-the-Premier-League-Newcastle-United, I have to say that I feel desperately sorry for Gemma (pictured above).
 It is completely beyond my no doubt flawed comprehension that someone who was lying in an incredibly commendable 29th place out of 130 competitors in a National Championship can fail to qualify for a final round in which EIGHTY FOUR players DID progress
It is, of course, because only the top nine individuals from non-qualifying teams progressed through the cut but the result was that dozens of players with a worse three-round score than Gemma progressed and she did not. 
It is also interesting to have a play-off for a cut, rather than allowing x places and all ties to progress which is normal for (professional) tournaments. 
The girls are incredibly lucky to be part of the NCAA college system which gives them the most amazing golf and academic opportunities but I wanted to highlight this strange vagary as I believe that Gemma deserves credit for her performance in an incredibly competitive field, along with Leona, Hayley, Bronte, Charlotte and Meg.

David MacLaren

Director of Property and Venue Development

European Tour

2022 Ryder Cup Bid Director