Booth out to prove she can be a win­ner

7 Days in Dubai - - SPORT - By Adrian Back @aidy­back adrian@7days.ae

By the time Carly Booth was 11 years old she al­ready knew what she wanted from her life. A tal­ented all-round ath­lete she could have pur­sued a ca­reer in any num­ber of sports, but her pas­sion for golf was over­rid­ing.

Booth had grown up in the south­ern Scot­tish high­land vil­lage of Com­rie and was in­tro­duced to golf at an early age. Her fa­ther, Wally, a pas­sion­ate golfer built his own pri­vate course for Booth and her brother Wallace to practise on. By the age of 12 she was play­ing with Sandy Lyle in the Bri­tish Mas­ters Pro-Am and at 14 she ap­peared in her first pro­fes­sional event, the Ladies Scot­tish Open.

That earned Booth the tag of golf­ing prodigy. A la­bel she has strug­gled to live up to de­spite mak­ing an im­pres­sive start to her pro­fes­sional ca­reer.

“It was great hav­ing a place to practise so close from my front door, it def­i­nitely made it eas­ier,” Booth, now 24, told 7DAYS. “Since then it has been a roller-coaster ride. I’ve had some suc­cess and there has been a lot of learn­ing along the way.

“I haven’t yet ful­filled my po­ten­tial so I’m go­ing to keep con­tin­u­ing to work to­wards my goal of be­ing the best golfer I can be.” Hav­ing been ranked the No. 1 ju­nior in Europe in 2007 and then a year later be­com­ing the youngest player to rep­re­sent Great Bri­tain & Ire­land in the 76year his­tory of the Cur­tis Cup, Booth would burst onto the pro­fes­sional scene in 2012, win­ning two Ladies Euro­pean Tour events. Her suc­cess in the Aberdeen As­set Man­age­ment Ladies Scot­tish Open and the Deutsche Bank Ladies Swiss Open led many to be­lieve Booth would go on to dom­i­nate across Europe.

How­ever, since those two tri­umphs, Booth’s progress has stalled and she has yet to add to her tally of vic­to­ries.

“It’s been frus­trat­ing as I feel I have the po­ten­tial to do it,” said Booth. “You need to have the be­lief and men­tal strength. Some­times I think it’s my head that let’s me down. But I will con­tinue to work to­wards get­ting back in the win­ners’ cir­cle, that’s my goal.”

Now Booth hopes she can bring an end to her bar­ren run in the UAE, a coun­try she knows well hav­ing spent plenty of time in the emi­rates.

The 24-year-old will play in the Fa­tima Bint Mubarak Ladies Open, which starts to­day at Saadiyat Beach Golf Club in Abu Dhabi, and is hop­ing her knowl­edge of the con­di­tions and course will help her gain a morale­boost­ing vic­tory.

“I love com­ing to the UAE and I’m hop­ing for a suc­cess­ful week,” added Booth. “I’ve met some great peo­ple in the UAE and I know ev­ery­one was pleased and ex­cited about this event.

“I want to win, that is my goal when I play a tour­na­ment but my game has been a lit­tle off re­cently so I’m just try­ing to get it back on track.

“Hope­fully af­ter a few good days practise be­fore Wednes­day I will be feel­ing ready to give it my all.

“I hope that will be good enough as I want to en­joy the week. I have my boyfriend Wayne com­ing out to sup­port me so that will keep me smil­ing all week.”

TAR­GET: Scot­tish golfer Carly Booth has high hopes for the tour­na­ment at Saadiyat Beach Golf Club

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