The final qualifying for the 2011 Women's British Open takes place on Monday (July 24), and one of those playing is Kelly Tidy.
Tidy, from England, was in the field at last year's WBO on the strength of her victory at the 2010 British Ladies Amateur Championship. And Kelly almost went back-to-back in the British Am, getting knocked out this year on the 20th hole in the semifinals. "It wasn't a shameful defence," Kelly said, with admirable modesty.
It's been an active 2011 so far for Kelly, who is 19 years old. She spent several months in Orlando, taking advantage of the good weather and playing with, among others, Christina Kim, Sophie Gustafson and fellow Englishwoman Karen Stupples.
After heading back home, Kelly has played for Great Britain & Ireland teams in the Astor Cup and the Vagliano Trophy. The Astor Cup is played every four years amongst GB&I, Australia, Canada, New Zealand and South Africa, and GB&I won this year. "It was a really great week," Kelly said, "I had so much fun."
The Vagliano Trophy is like the Curtis Cup except that rather than GB&I vs. the USA, it's GB&I vs. Continental Europe. This year, the continentals took the trophy.
And Kelly remains busy after the WBO qualifier. "I have a couple more events soon enough," she told me. "The English Strokeplay Championships in two weeks time, and the British Strokeplay Championships." Kelly will be among the favorites at both.
And after that? Pro golf beckons. Kelly isn't sure just yet of an exact timetable for turning pro, but is considering entering Ladies European Tour Q-School later this year. And whenever she turns pro, she's looking forward to it.
"Providing nothing changes, it's most likely I'll have a go (at Q-School) this year," Kelly said. "I'm excited to turn professional as its what I've always wanted to do!"
Kelly is an exciting young player, one we'll be hearing a lot from (and seeing more on Golf Babes) in the future.
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