23rd July 2019: The reigning Women’s British Open champion Georgia Hall MBE has been able to take a proper break this summer to fine tune her game ahead of the most important part of the women’s golf season, starting on Thursday.
With back-to-back majors over the next fortnight, the 23-year-old from Bournemouth says she feels ready to perform to the best of her abilities. This week, she will tee up in the Evian Championship in France, which is the fourth major of the season, while next week, she will defend at the fifth major, the AIG Women’s British Open in England.
Speaking at the Evian Resort Golf Club in the picturesque lake-side town of Evian-les-Bains on Tuesday, she said: “I’ve played here the last two years and come 10th and 15th, so I’m very happy with how I’ve played and I’m confident coming into this event. It’s really nice to be close to home, the weather is absolutely perfect and the golf course is in great condition. I love this golf course and it’s quite fiddly, so you have to place the ball in the right areas of the greens. I’m looking forward to teeing it up on Thursday.”
Hall skipped the Marathon Classic and Dow Great Lakes Bay Invitational over the last fortnight to spend two weeks preparing at the Wentworth Club in Surrey, where she is an ambassador. She recently moved to an apartment in Sunningdale with her boyfriend and caddie, Harry Tyrrell, who is a professional golfer himself, so feels that she has had the ideal preparation.
She had a congested programme at the start of the year, playing in 14 tournaments across the world in six months. Although she started well with a ninth place in the Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions, she then played across the continents from Australia to Japan, which drained her energy and saw her make eight cuts from 13 starts. She says that she has now learned the value of building proper breaks into her schedule.
“I played in too many events at the start of the year, but it’s a good learning curve for me to be able to plan my schedule next year,” said the world’s 30th ranked player. “I made sure that I had a good two weeks off to prepare before this three week stretch and the weather has been really good at home, so I’ve worked really hard over the last fortnight and I’m really looking forward to the next three weeks in Europe.
“I’ve been working on my swing and also on my chipping, to get a bit more consistency. I’ve been playing a lot of golf and I think that’s important, not just hitting balls on the range. I’ve been practising with my dad and also next week will be really important going in as defending champion, so it’s been a great couple of weeks of preparation. The weather was great so I was very lucky.
“My dad has been helping me clear my mind and keep things simple, not trying to complicate me, my swing or me as a golfer: just go out and be Georgia. I’ve been working on keeping my posture a bit lower, because I’ve been playing so much golf, my posture has become a little bit upright when I’m hitting it: that is my only swing thought. Most importantly, I think mentally for me, it’s about keeping calm and enjoying it.”
Having competed for Team Europe in the last Solheim Cup and having won the Women’s British Open at Royal Lytham last year, Hall knows a thing or two about dealing with pressure.
She has a tattoo on the inside of her right wrist which says ‘Deep Breath’ and when asked if she still looks at it on the golf course, she says: “Sometimes. I’ve got another one which says ‘Be Brave’ so I should listen to that, too. Both of them are important… being brave is very important in life.”
If Hall has been shaken by her recent run of results, then she certainly doesn’t show it. On the contrary, she looks fit and ready to contend for a second major.
Foto: Armin Küstenbrück
2020 ITTF World Tour Hungarian Open
Wins also for Surrey Storm, Saracens Mavericks and team bath
photos by Tim Mavers-Chance
photo Dan Vernon
Foto: Armin Küstenbrück