Driv­ing to suc­cess

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - NEWS -

WES­LEY Col­lege stu­dent Hunter Wood­ley-Page is only seven years old, but the avid golfer is al­ready tee­ing up to rep­re­sent Aus­tralia at the Ju­nior World Golf Cham­pi­onships this year.

IT’S only been a year since seven-yearold Hunter Wood­ley-Page picked up a golf club.

But the Wes­ley Col­lege stu­dent is al­ready on his way to rep­re­sent­ing Aus­tralia at two pres­ti­gious in­ter­na­tional tour­na­ments this year.

Hunter’s fa­ther An­drew Wood­leyPage said when his son ex­pressed an in­ter­est in golf, he sug­gested they have a go on the greens for fun.

“I asked whether he sim­ply wanted to have a hit at the park or take some kids’ classes,” Mr Wood­ley-Page said.

“But Hunter’s re­sponse was ‘I want to play tour­na­ments and I want to play in Amer­ica at the world ju­nior cham­pi­onships’.”

Just a year af­ter this con­ver­sa­tion, Hunter has been se­lected to rep­re­sent Aus­tralia at the Trans-Tas­man Cup in Syd­ney later this month.

He has also qual­i­fied and been in­vited to the US Kids Golf World Ju­nior Cham­pi­onships in the USA.

Play­ing at the Col­lier Park Golf Course and a mem­ber of Royal Perth Golf Club, Hunter’s ta­lent was ini­tially iden­ti­fied by golf cham­pion and tu­tor Emma Liebe­nau.

Mr Wood­ley-Page said Liebe­nau had con­stantly put thought into spe­cial ac­tiv­i­ties and chal­lenges for Hunter to take on, which had ig­nited a strong drive for suc­cess in him.

“I specif­i­cally re­call one filthy Septem­ber morn­ing, pur­ple sky, torrential rain, a com­pletely va­cated course and driv­ing range with ev­ery­one hud­dled un­der the club­house ve­randa,” Mr Wood­ley-Page said.

“All ex­cept one lit­tle boy – Hunter – who had worked for hours on a high­draw three-wood and was not go­ing to leave now that he was crush­ing it.”

When Liebe­nau went on ma­ter­nity leave, Col­lier Park pro Matt Chriss took up the reins.

“With Emma on leave, I was keen for Hunter to con­tinue his devel­op­ment. Thank­fully we found Matt, who’s had some real hard work to do help­ing Hunter’s swing evolve and cope through mul­ti­ple growth spurts,” Mr Wood­ley-Page said.

“I think Matt has the ideal tem­per­a­ment, un­der­stand­ing that Hunter is a seven-year-old child, but he still trains him like a tour player; we’re lucky to have him.”

Hunter will com­pete in Syd­ney on May 27-28 be­fore trav­el­ling to the world cham­pi­onships in the USA from Au­gust 2-7 to rep­re­sent his nation in the sport he loves.

“He loves golf and works his back­side off,” Mr Wood­ley-Page said.

“When we play he claps his play­ing part­ners’ good shots, and when he loses or plays poorly he doesn’t think it’s un­fair or un­lucky, he just works harder to im­prove.”

Pic­ture: Will Rus­sell www.com­mu­ni­typix.com.au d453835

Hunter Wood­ley-Page.

Pic­ture: Will Rus­sell

Hunter Wood­leyPage has a real pas­sion for suc­cess in his cho­sen sport. d453835

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