Golf for New Zealand in 2011 win wise was pretty empty. Unfortunately there were no signs of a win on any of the major tours around the world, and it was left to two Korean-born New Zealanders to fly the flag and bring a little recognition to New Zealand.
Lydia Ko attracted most attention with her outstanding displays around the world in amateur and professional events.
The 14-year-old Kiwi schoolgirl, ranked No 1 amateur in the world, started the year finishing second at the New South Wales women’s open and then fourth at the New Zealand women’s Open. She the followed that with wins in the Australian and New Zealand strokeplay championships and the New Zealand matchplay championship. Over in the United States Lydia finished first equal in the qualifying rounds of the US women’s amateur championship but sadly was eliminated in the second matchplay rounds.
Overall a brilliant effort for one so young, she certainly has all the talent required to succeed at the top level, and look forward to seeing how she performs in 2012.
On the mens side, Danny Lee, who turned pro two and a half years ago has begun to show some of the potential that made him the No 1 amateur in the world in 2008. He has finished the year in the top 25 on the US PGA Nationwide Tour and has earned his playing card for the main Tour in 2012 and he also retained his playing card on the European Tour, well done Danny.
For myself, the great challenge from Captain Tim yesterday fizzled out as he quit after nine holes (and was already three down) citing a bad head.It transpires that after dinner he imbibed a little too much Navy rum and succumbed on the couch overnight. Real Navy rum is distilled in the British Virgin Islands and has to be shown some respect. If you are interested it name is Pussers, and well worth a shot or two, but not before golf.