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Golf Australia Express : Issue 23
By Sam Gole VIEW THE GOLF sure is fun. That feeling when you nail a drive is just magic. Same goes for flushing an iron from the fairway all over the pin. And what about holing a tricky 30-foot putt? It’s all heavenly. Pulling off any one these feats even once during a round is enough to lift spirits to cloud nine. But in the blink of an eye the course can feel like hell, too. It just takes one poor shot and it’s enough to turn that smile toward the fire filled cauldron. And when it does, no one benefits. But as the girls showed during the final round of the Women’s Australian Open, playing golf, even in not-so-glorious fashion, is still worth a smile. Star-of-the-future Jessica Korda could have been troubled by a three-peat of bogeys to give away the lead late in the round, but she maintained a bubbly disposition at all times around the Royal Melbourne track. Her playing partner Nikki Campbell is all class. A couple of double bogeys threw her out of contention early and amid the disappointment of falling back to 12th, she remained happy to the end. In the penultimate group, Korean pair So Yeon Ryu and Hee Kyung Seo shared the misery of carelessly three-putting the final green in regulation play. A two-putt for either player would have earned them the title. No slamming clubs or throwing the putter towards the caddie either—just hugs and giggles. And American Brittany Lincicombe smiled off the setback of not claiming the title on the first playoff hole when her seven-foot birdie putt horse-shoed around the cup— I’ve seen players embed putters into the green in response to that one. How a little adversity on the golf course is dealt with depicts whether or not this game is the right one to play. Spitting the dummy, being rude and obnoxious is not cool in golfing circles. That kind of behaviour is disrespectful to playing partners and the game itself. After all golf is a game. And games have their challenges, pitfalls and twists. It’s not rocket science and we aren’t saving lives. Doing something you enjoy and in a beautiful setting is worth smiling for— from go to woe. OTG TELL US YOUR THOUGHTS: firstname.lastname@example.org SHINY, HAPPY GOLFERS There’s only one way to play this game—with a smile on your face, writes Sam Gole.