In just three glorious weeks from June through to July, South African Lee-Anne Pace has transformed herself into one of the leading lights on the Ladies European Tour.
The winner of the 2010 Deutsche Bank Ladies Swiss Open went on to tie for fifth at the Portugal Ladies Open and then was equal fourth at the Tenerife Ladies Open. Here the 29-year-old from Mossel Bay muses on her golfing journey so far.
How did you get into golf? My father used to play off a 3 handicap and I used to caddy for him on the weekends. When I was 18 I started playing myself and he was my teacher in the beginning.
What benefit does it give you? I love sport and I love being able to do it as a profession. It’s the best job in the world. I like the excitement of competition.
What does it take out of you? A lot of travelling and a lot of time away from home.
Would you recommend playing golf? Yes definitely. It is a game for all ages and any ability. You can enjoy it whether you are good or not as your handicap takes care of your ability. It is not as stressful on your body and you can play it almost everywhere.
How can golf become a more popular sport? I think it is already one of the most popular sports out there and for sure one of the fastest growing sports.
What kind of advice would you give to beginners? Don’t try to kill the ball: swing easy. Practice your short game and always go for the biggest part of the green.
What golf course would you most like to play? Augusta National.
How far do you want to go in golf? I would like to be one of the top golfers in the world.
Which golfers would you like to play with? Ernie Els, Tiger Woods, Lorena Ochoa.
What is the best moment in your career so far? When I won the Deutsche Bank Ladies Swiss Open.
What was the worst moment? Any time I miss a cut.
How do you focus under pressure? I concentrate on my breathing and try to focus only on what I have to do with the ball.
Can you tell us about your hobbies? I love reading, water sports and playing on the internet.
What are your favourite books? Pillars of the earth and World without end by Ken Follet.
What’s your favourite music? U2, Matchbox 20, The Frey and Snow Patrol.
What are your favourite films? Fried Green Tomatoes, Dirty Dancing and Pretty Woman.
What’s your favourite food? Indian, Sushi, Thai and Vietnamese.
Where is your favourite place? Mossel bay.
Do you play any other sports? I used to play tennis, hockey and do athletics.
What have you always dreamed about but never had time for? Scuba-diving.
For how many years have you played golf? 10.
How long have you been a professional? Five years.
Follow Lee-Anne at the Evian Masters, from 22-25 July and at the Ricoh Women’s British Open from 29 July -1 August.