Crowd con­trol

South Waikato News - - SPORT - By PET­RICE TAR­RANT

Her lat­est se­lec­tion to rep­re­sent New Zealand in a Ja­panese golf­ing tour­na­ment was Chantelle Cas­sidy’s most ed­u­ca­tional trip yet.

The Toko­roa born golfer said she has never played in front of such large crowds.

‘‘ Just cop­ing with the crowd was the big­gest thing I learnt and just the en­vi­ron­ment, it’s so dif­fer­ent to New Zealand.’’

Cas­sidy was the only woman in New Zealand selected to play in the Sun­tory Ladies Open, the sec­ond big­gest ladies tour in Ja­pan.

The am­a­teur player said she was one of only three non-Asians en­tered in the tour­na­ment.

‘‘The stan­dard was re­ally good. There were top play­ers from Korea and Ja­pan.’’

It was the as­pir­ing player’s first in­ter­na­tional pro­fes­sional tour­na­ment but hope­fully not her last.

‘‘My goal is to hope­fully turn pro then do some coach­ing. It’s ac­tu­ally pretty tough to turn pro in New Zealand.’’

The 21- year- old, who trains or plays ev­ery day of the week, had just un­der one month to pre­pare for the trip.

But 12 years of play­ing stood her in good stead.

She said she came in tied at 78th over­all out of 120 en­trants.

‘‘I was happy but I would say I got to the stage where I just thought ‘hey, I got into this tour­na­ment, it was a good ex­pe­ri­ence for me and I learnt what I needed to work on’.’’

She said her proud­est mo­ment was learn­ing to con­trol her game in front of crowds of up to 30,000.

‘‘ I think that was the big­gest hur­dle.’’

Cas­sidy said

the de­mand­ing tour was a good lead up to the Ruth Mid­dle­ton Tour­na­ment this weekend.

‘‘I won that last year and I’m de­fend­ing my ti­tle so I’m hop­ing to play well.’’

Her per­for­mance will af­fect her se­lec­tion on New Zealand’s rep­re­sen­ta­tive team head­ing off to the Espir­ito Santo World Team Cham­pi­onship in Ja­pan later this year.

‘‘Three people are picked for that team and I’m vy­ing for one of those spots.’’

Photo: PATRICK HAMIL­TON

Win­ning style: Chantelle Cas­sidy learnt a lot play­ing in a tour­na­ment in Ja­pan.

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