Hazel MacGarvie 'feeling good but a little bit nervous' about LET debut
The 22-year-old Royal Troon member is among five Scots teeing up in the $1 million Aramco Saudi Ladies International at Royal Greens Golf & Country Club in King Abdullah Economic City.
MacGarvie secured her LET card by finishing joint-15th in the Q-School in Spain in December and is excited to be making her first start in a field that also includes Laura Beveridge, Michele Thomson, Kylie Henry and Gabrielle Macdonald.
“I am feeling good,” said MacGarvie, a Stirling University graduate. “I’m really looking forward to it, obviously I’m a little bit nervous at the same time.
“But I think I have just got to say to myself it is just another round of golf and go and enjoy it and see what happens.
“I haven’t really got any expectations of myself because I have got nothing to benchmark myself against with my own performances, so I want to go and enjoy it.”
Defending champion Lydia Ko pulled out after testing positive for Covid, but a strong field is headed by 2021 AIG Women’s Open winner Anna Nordqvist.
“I have been trying to practise at Troon,” added MacGarvie, who won the St Rule Trophy in St Andrews two years ago. “The weather has been pretty awful, so it has been a bit of struggle.
“I have been trying to use the indoor bays, which the pro shop have kindly let me use, and trying to wrap up and go and hit a few balls.”
She reckons that getting used to fast greens will be her biggest challenge this week, with the wind that whips off the Red Sea in the afternoon also set to be testing.
“I had heard it was going to be windy, but I didn’t think it was going to be this windy. That was a bit of a shock,” said MacGarvie.
“The course is really good, set up really well and it’s in perfect condition so hopefully that sets up for some good scoring if the wind dies down a bit.”
The LET newcomer is breaking herself in gently, having decided to play in just one of two upcoming events in South Africa then likewise in Thailand after that.
“Personally, I thought I would ease myself to get settled in by breaking it up and get used to tour life rather than doing four or five weeks on the spin and thinking after that it was too much,” she said.
“I’m going to try and play as many events as possible, but I want to break it up and get myself into the rhythm of it first. You just have to try and see if it works.”
Thomson, a winner in the team event in the inaugural Aramco Saudi Ladies International on the same course in November 2020, is aiming to back up her top-10 finish in the season-opening Magical Kenya Ladies Open last month.
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