The business end of the golf started today and the ladies did not disappoint. The girls sure have game.
It was cold when I arrived and had I watched an enormous black cloud move across the sky the whole drive in and just as I pulled up it started raining big drops then stopped quite suddenly.
I sat in the media centre for a bit catching up on emails and reading the quick quotes from the day before and checking out where everyone finished as yesterday I had gone off and golfed myself at Calgary Golf and Country Club.
Ariya Jutanugarn was dominating, even with her injured knee. She started the day -12 with her playing partners In Gee Chun and Steph Meadow tied in second place both on -9.
I headed out to the range watching the leaders warm up then stopped and chatted with Shane – one of the security guys I’d been speaking with all week.
I then stopped by the putting green watching Jutanugarn sinking her last few practice putts as they called her off to tee it up.
I followed behind planning on photographing them tee off and told a guy I liked his funky pants. He giggled and thanked me as we headed to the first tee.
I showed the volunteers my credentials lest they wave their hands in front of the shot I was trying to get and settled in.
Ariya had an iron in her hands while the girls had their drivers. The couple beside me were discussing Ariya hitting an iron the same distance they can hit their drivers and were saying how intimidating it would be but I figure that it wouldn’t bother me so why would it bother them.
Everyone has tools in their bags that work best for them, why would you care what others were using? You are there to play your own game.
I stayed on the 1st and watched the next group come through – the ones that had started on the 10th – then headed to the 5th green to watch some putting action.
I flashed my credentials at Mary (my new volunteer friend) and we chatted the whole time around photographing five groups come through. Not only was I entertained by the ladies golf I was kept amused by the exuberance of a South Korean gentleman (he of the funky pants) as he cheered and clapped and spoke with all the South Korean girls who came through the green.
As I don’t speak Korean I have no idea what he said to each however they all nodded and smiled at him as they headed off to the 6th tee.
I was getting hungry so it was back to the media centre for lunch.
I had a response from Edwin in Bolivia and we discussed the junior program he has been running (with next to no equipment) to help troubled youth and we discussed me visiting Bolivia to help implement a sustainable program. Seems that Fairways is Bolivia bound.
As I was getting my things together to head back out, Terry Lenyk turned the volume up on the television and instead I decided to watch the Golf Channel’s coverage so I could see multiple holes.
I sat at my desk and tweeted for a while before heading back to the 18th. I photographed the Birdie Board again and watched Karrie Webb’s bogey. The crowds were thick and there wasn’t anywhere really to sit so I headed back to the media centre watching Brooke Henderson with her fans.
She spent a lot of time in Autograph Alley and as I walked past Adam from Golf Town we both commented that she would be there for an hour if she signed everything and she seemed to be doing exactly that.
At the smiles of delight from the young girls I knew she had fans for life and the adults seemed pretty chuffed too.
I stopped and chatted with Ryan, one of the Priddis Greens’ staff (forgive me if I have your name wrong) for about 20 minutes.We chatted about global golf, juniors, teaching and the values learnt through golf and he congratulated me on what I had started with Fairways.
He is finishing his degree next May and asked me where I thought Fairways would be then. What a question! Who knew?
We are going to stay in touch and we will see where I happen to be in the world in May and what is happening with Fairways as he will be footloose and fancy-free with nothing planned and would love to bring golf to underprivileged juniors.
I gave him one of my cards and headed in to check out the golf shoes. I have had issues with my last two pairs of Footjoys and am in the market for a new brand but might try Puma as they have been recommended to me. As they had no Puma in stock I headed into the media centre and watched the rest of the golf on television.
I do love that I can get instant updates and watch lots of the golf. I would have missed Amy Yang’s eagle on the 18th if I wasn’t watching in the media centre.
In the top 10 there are five South Korean ladies – they sure know how to golf in South Korea, the balance is made up of five different nationalities. All extremely talented golfers and while Jutanugarn bogeyed two of the last three holes, she carded a round of -5 today and goes into tomorrow with a two stroke lead.