Image: Getty Images
The Rose Ladies Series event at Royal St. George’s was unforgettable for several reasons.
Firstly, it was the first women’s professional tournament to ever be played at the historical venue and perhaps just as importantly, it was the place where Gemma Dryburgh became a Rose Series back-to-back winner.
That’s right, after winning at the Buckinghamshire on July 2 she only went and bagged herself another trophy a week later; her lovely dad was on her bag yet again, too.
We’re so pleased for her and she is such a deserving winner.
And the funny thing is that when I spoke to her last week, she gave no hint that she was thinking a double win was on the cards, or that she would also have an amazing top 10 finish on the Clutch Pro Tour the day before the ground-breaking tournament.
In truth, it’s actually hard to know how she will ever top this week.
She told me that while many of the players had fitted in a practice round in the days leading up to the event, she wouldn’t be able to as she would be at Sunningdale Heath for the Open Access Masters.
“I’m not playing it before but I have played there years ago for the Amateur Championships, so hopefully I’ll remember most of the holes,” she said.
Finishing one under, with Charley Hull and Georgia Hall just behind her at T2, it’s fair to say the lack of practice round didn’t hold her back.
But she did correctly predict that it would be blowing a gale and that the conditions would be tough, and this makes her brilliant finish all the more impressive.
“I’m sure the wind will be blowing like it normally does down there as well,” she commented.
“I’ve heard they haven’t changed the set up too much from what it would have been like for the Open. So, it should be nice and tough for us.
“It’s going to be amazing to be part of the first women’s professional event at such a prestigious venue. I’m really looking forward to it.”
It was perhaps even more amazing than she ever dreamed it could be.
Although originally from Aberdeen, Scotland, Gemma is now based at Beaconsfield in Buckinghamshire.
This means that the majority of the venues on the Series have been an easy drive away, however she sympathises with those in her home country who haven’t been able to take part.
“I’m really glad to see that Paul Lawrie has launched the Tartan Tour and they have some more events up there now. I felt really sorry for the Northern girls who haven’t been able to play.”
Sophie Powell’s tales about travelling down from Manchester and sleeping in a van the night before the events have been truly inspirational, and while Gemma has never had to do exactly that, she did say that tour life wasn’t always exactly glamorous.
“I’ve never had to sleep in a van or anything like that... but good for her because that’s some serious dedication,” she said.
“I did have one bad host experience in America on my first Symetra Tour event though. The doors didn’t lock and the shower didn’t work; it was an interesting experience. If that happened now, I would definitely go and get a hotel, but as a rookie I just put up with it.”
Gemma has always been sporty, playing county football before she turned pro.
“I really miss playing football but I can’t risk playing at all now in case I get injured,” she said.
“In some ways it’s totally different to golf as obviously it’s a team sport, but then I think all sports in general are similar mentally as they all encourage you to have a competitive edge and a drive to win. Both teach you never to give up even towards the end of the game.
“Football was my favourite sport growing up but then once I reached a certain age, I had to choose between that and golf. But I think I made the right choice, all things considered!”
She can definitely say that again.
Move the Solheim... again? No thanks - READ MORE