By Nanna Koerstz Madsen
When I won the Tipsport Golf Masters in the Czech Republic, I suddenly realised that the Olympic Games is just around the corner and that I will represent Denmark in Rio. It was something that I was hoping for this year and then suddenly it became real.
I recently went to the Danish Golf Union offices to collect all my new gear and I can’t wait to wear the Danish colours – red and white (with some navy blue thrown in for good measure!). I think I will have enough clothes to last me for at least a month, so it’s a shame that we’ll only be there for seven days – although I’m certainly going to make the most of the opportunity while I’m there.
It feels really special to wear the Danish flag as it’s so rare that we have the chance to represent our country and promote our sport to a global audience of billions.
I’m really excited about the experience of going and staying in the Olympic Village. I don’t watch that much sport on TV but of course I watch the Olympics and when I was younger I used to watch the Danish women swimmers, Jeanette Ottesen and Rikke Møller, always bring home the medals for Denmark. Of course, I always follow the tennis player Caroline Wozniacki and they call her the ‘sunshine girl’ in Denmark: she is really popular. It’s amazing to think that I will be an Olympic athlete, in the same position as those I really admire and used to watch when I was little, growing up.
Golf is actually a pretty big sport in Denmark but people don’t watch it much on television because they need to pay to see it. Now they can see golf without paying and I think the Games offer us women golfers the best chance of gaining a mainstream profile.
Since I won in Pilsen, I’ve had a lot of press and television interviews, with more than 1000 people congratulating me, but I think we need all of the good golfers to support the Games for golf to stay in the Olympic Programme beyond Toyko in 2020. I really hope they do.
In the tournament itself, I don’t know what results to expect because it will be completely new, but my boyfriend Nicky Hansen will be there to caddie for me, as he was at last year’s Ricoh Women’s British Open, when I equalled the course record with a final round of 65.
I don’t generally get too nervous in pressure situations and I relish the big moments. I thought I would feel nervous coming down the stretch in Pilsen, but I didn’t. I only wished that the Olympic Golf competition would come sooner and at the right time for me!
Winning an Olympic medal must be a truly special and unique thing to achieve in your lifetime, potentially inspiring people all around the world to play golf. I think all of us women golfers appreciate that, which is why we are so keen to make the most of this opportunity.
If I can take my best form from Pilsen across to Rio, then who knows what is possible to achieve.