Meghan MacLaren

LET tournament winner Meghan MacLaren has paid tribute to Australia and particularly New South Wales for giving her ‘life-changing’ opportunities.

The English golfer was left shocked after scrolling through social media and reading about the vandal attack which took place on Dunedoo Golf Club, NSW.

Dunedoo is a small village and members discovered damage to the course which saw about half of the club’s nine fairways and sand greens completely ploughed up.

Having recorded victory at the Women’s NSW Open in 2018 and defended her title in 2019, New South Wales will always have a special place in Meghan’s heart.

Meghan said: “I don’t know where to start with Australia. It is one of those places that I felt at home as soon as I went there. There is just a vibe there. You tend to be close to the beach, you can get good food, great coffee and then the people are so welcoming. There is a British sense of humour as well. We’ve been lucky to play some fantastic golf courses over there. Everything about it has made me feel so comfortable. To get my first win there too, it ticks all the boxes. It’s hard for me not to love it.

“When I saw the news, it hit me hard. I think over the past year we have come to appreciate golf so much more. When courses reopened in England, I could barely get a tee time on my own course because there were people always out there. To see somewhere like that have their course taken away, I just felt it. You can imagine what it would be like for any of us at home. Dunedoo is a place where golf is a big part of such a small community. I can’t even imagine how awful that must have been to wake up and see that one morning.”

A GoFundMe page was set up by Dunedoo Golf to help with costs towards rebuilding the club and Meghan didn’t think twice about donating to the cause.

The 26-year-old made a $500 donation, while fellow LET professionals Amy Walsh and Lydia Hall also donated $200. 

Meghan added: “I didn’t even think twice about it. I saw there was a link to the page and it’s not a big amount of money in the scheme of things, but Golf New South Wales has given me literally life-changing opportunities. I feel like I have a connection to Golf New South Wales and I just wanted to do something. It’s not very much but we all know what golf means to us, so you can only imagine what it means to people there too.

“I hope that they can rebuild it and maybe it will help bring the community together a bit more. We see not very nice things happening quite often. A couple of other players have contributed as well. Even if people can give a small amount, it would make a massive difference.”