Hannah McCook overcomes 'mental and physical battle' to set up LET card chance

Few golfers feel happy about playing for their immediate future at a Qualifying School but Hannah McCook will certainly have a smile on her face for this week’s Ladies European Tour card battle in Spain.

Hannah McCook was among six Scots to come through the LET Q-School pre-qualifier at La Mana and now heads into the final at the same venue. Picture: Tristan Jones

The Grantown-on-Spey woman, after all, has already pulled off one of the biggest achievements in her career to be among eight Scottish hopefuls in the final at La Manga after overcoming hip surgery earlier this year.

McCook was still on the road to recovery when she had to turn down an opportunity to play in this year’s Trust Golf Women’s Scottish Open at Dumbarnie Links in Fife, her invitation, thankfully, having been deferred for the 2022 edition.

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Due to a combination of her injury and Covid-19 restrictions, the 28-yar-old hadn’t played on the LET for almost two years before heading into battle in last week’s Q-School pre-qualifier at the same Murcia venue for the final.

But, defying all sorts of odds, McCook comfortably passed that test along with Jane Turner, Rachael Taylor, Hazel MacGarvie, Tara Mactaggart and Clara Young, and they are now joined by Heather MacRae and Laura Beveridge in flying the Saltire in the concluding card contest.

“It’s ironic that Q-School isn’t the most thrived after golf tournament,” admitted McCook, who recorded back-to-back victories in the Welsh and Irish Women’s Open Stroke-Play Championships in 2018.

“But, for me, just the feeling of being back in this environment made me feel a real sense of purpose and I genuinely felt so excited to be here.

“Since my hip surgery in March, it’s been a mental and physical battle. It’s certainly not been easy. I guess it’s the unknown of how long before you’ll play again, compete again and then feel comfortable again.”

The top 20 and ties in the final will secure category 11 cards while conditional status will be afforded to those in 21st to 50th and tied.

“I am delighted to get through the pre-Q,” added McCook, who is managed by Paul Lawrie. “But, to be honest, just being here and successfully playing this amount of golf, I feel is one of my biggest achievements.

“I wouldn’t be where I am without the support of my family, SportScotland, Scottish Golf, 5 Star Sports Agency and my sponsors, I can’t express my thanks enough to all of them.”

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