Joanne McKee, the newly appointed Asia-Pacific team captain of the 2018 Patsy Hankins Trophy, will lead a team of 12 talented lady amateur golfers to play against the Europe team to defend the title.
Louie Chan talks to the newly appointed Asia-Pacific team captain of the 2018 Patsy Hankins Trophy to be held in Doha. Captain McKee will lead a team of 12 talented lady amateur golfers to play against the Europe team to defend the title.
Louie Chan: Congratulations on your appointment to be the Asia-Pacific team captain of the 2018 Patsy Hankins Trophy. What does the appointment mean to you?
Joanne McKee: It is an honour and privilege to be appointed captain of the 2018 Patsy Hankins Trophy. Needless to say, I am very excited to be involved in such a prestigious event.
LC: The Asia Pacific team took victory in the inaugural match in 2016. Are you confident to defend the title?
JM: Admittedly, there is a little extra pressure on us because we won the inaugural match away from home last year, but when I look at the pool of talented players we have to choose from, I feel quietly confident.
LC: How beneficial is your extensive career in HKGA committees (i.e. HK National Team Captain 2014 Asian Games experience) in leading the Asia-Pacific team?
JM: I have been fortunate to be involved with the HKGA since 2004. I was appointed national team captain in 2012 and since that time I have had experience with our national team overseas at the 2014 Asian games in Korea, as well as the World Amateur Team Championships in Japan in 2014 and Mexico in 2016. I’ve learnt that understanding your team, how the tournaments work, keeping moral high and creating good team spirit is very important.
LC: What are the criteria for players to be picked for the Asia-Pacific team?
JM: World amateur golf rankings will play a major part in the selection process and a maximum of two players can be selected from each country.
LC: The Patsy Hankins Trophy has a similar format as the Ryder Cup. How will you pick the players according to the match play format?
JM: Ryder Cup is my favourite golfing event. I have always thought that the chemistry between the players is very important. I will be looking at different personalities, and how the players interact. Obviously there will be players from different countries conversing in different languages, so this will also be a major factor.
LC: Tiffany Chan was the only HK player in the Asia-Pacific team last year. Are you planning to choose more players from Hong Kong in 2018?
JM: Tiffany is such a wonderful role model, and played a significant role in the victory in 2016. Sadly, she won’t be eligible in 2018 as she has now turned professional. We have some great players following in her footsteps, Isabella Leung, Mimi Ho and Michelle Cheung, are currently our highest ranked players. I will be meeting at the end of this month with the other members of the selection committee and we will be looking closely at all the players and their recent achievaements. I would love to see Hong Kong once again represented in this tournament. The Patsy Hankins Trophy is played between two teams of twelve lady amateur golfers representing Europe and Asia-Pacific. There will be three days of play. The first two days will comprise five foursomes matches each morning and five four-ball matches each afternoon. On the final day, all twelve team players will compete in singles match play. Please go to www.ega-golf.ch/event/patsy-hankins-trophy for more information.