Premier League Referee Mike Dean has taken on a new challenge and is enjoying his role as Sophie Walker’s caddie at the Helsingborg Open in Sweden.
This is his second tournament caddying for Sophie as he made his debut at the ISPS HANDA Ladies European Masters, where Sophie tied for 41st place.
The 5 handicap golfer from Cheshire is well known for officiating at the top level of English football where he has refereed at a number of crucial league and cup matches, but he was a keen golfer until the age of 16.
“I got into golf at a young age and I love the game,” said Dean, after making the cut in Sweden with Sophie. “I took ten years out when I started refereeing properly but I’ve been playing again for around 14 years. I’ve got the best handicap out of the championship referees but I wouldn’t say I’m the best golfer!”
Dean explained how he initially expressed an interest to the LET Caddies’ Association. “I spoke to one of the guys in mid-April about doing some caddying and received an e-mail from Sophie in June. We made the cut at the Buckinghamshire so I did okay. I’m trying my best and it’s still a bit of a learning curve. I speak to some of the lads about what I could be doing better.”
Sophie said: “He’s doing really well; he’s the best yardage pacer I’ve had and I talk a lot and he listens. If I need him to back me up, he’s good at that because he’s very positive and I’m enjoying having him on the bag.”
This will be Dean’s last appearance on the LET this year although we may see him on tour again in the future. He said: “Because there were no games in England it’s given me the chance to do it but I probably won’t have the chance to do it again this year.”