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LET player Meghan MacLaren has won the second event on the Rose Ladies Series at Moor Park, despite receiving a two-shot penalty for picking up the wrong ball.
But the superstar player didn’t let that put her off her game and she won the tournament on June 25 by two shots, with Brokenhurst Manor organiser Liz Young and amateur Samantha Fuller tied for second.
This tops off a great week for the Newcastle United fan; on Monday she finished in the top ten on the Clutch Pro Tour, on Tuesday she was revealed as the author for the script to the new LET promotional video and now, she’s a Rose Ladies Series champion.
We hope she's got a big (socially distanced) celebration planned for this weekend.
As one of the most popular and sought-after players in the women’s game, we were lucky enough to catch up with her to discuss this crazy and unpredictable year we’re having.
Asked about how she felt when she heard the news that the Rose Ladies Series was launching and even she, as one of golf’s most important and eloquent voices, struggled to express the enormity of the impact it had.
If you ever needed proof of the huge difference Justin Rose has made to women’s golf, then this is it.
“It’s hard to put into words what it means to us girls,” she said.
“It’s something that we have been talking about for a long time; the need for respect from other sources, especially male golfers. To have someone with the stature of Justin Rose get behind us, well it doesn’t get much bigger than that and we’ve already seen the companies who have got on board as a result.
"It's not much that we’ve been asking for, we just want a bit of recognition and it’s that, much more than the extra money, that means so much to us.”
Asked whether she thinks Justin will encourage other male players to come forward and pledge their support and she isn’t totally sure.
“Maybe, time will tell,” she said.
“They have their own priorities and there’s nothing wrong with that. All we’ve ever wanted is a bit of acknowledgement. The backing from these companies who have an interest in women's sport and equality mean just as much as the players getting behind us.”
She notes that the need for more support for women’s sport as a whole, whether through televisation or creating more opportunities to play, has been on the agenda for a while.
“This is something that’s been building for a while, and there’s been a lot of conversations happening on social media about women’s sport. Obviously, the COVID-19 situation has been awful for everybody but it has created a gap in the professional sports schedule and in the campaign to get women’s sport more recognition. People haven’t had anything to get behind recently, so Liz’s idea for women’s open at Brokenhurst Manor and the whole series has come together at the right time.”
Considering her recent successes, we’ve interested in knowing how she prepares for competitions.
“I think of these events as being a bit different to normal LET tournaments. This year is unusual as the first scheduled events on the Tour are the Scottish and British Opens; so two massive ones are first and that wouldn’t happen in a normal year. For big events like those my preparation would be to work on the things that will make a difference to my game and to try and be in a good place mentally.
"So the Rose Series works perfectly for me as they are almost like a chance to trial a few things and see where I am with the areas I’ve been working on during lockdown. It means I can take a bit of a pressure off and just enjoy it; I know everyone’s in the same boat and feeling the same.
"After this situation we have more appreciation for so many things including this new chance to play.”
Before the recent tournament, Meghan hadn’t actually been to Moor Park since she was about six year’s old. But clearly that wasn’t a disadvantage.
“Some of the courses we have lined up are brilliant and I’m really looking forward to playing them all," she said.
"I’ve played some like JCB and the Bucks, but for the others it will be my first time.”
We can’t wait to see how she demolishes the rest of the courses, too.
Congratulations Meghan, we’re so incredibly happy for you.
For more information about the Rose Ladies Tour visit www.theroseladiesseries.golfgenius.com.
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