Two PGA professional golfers are set to take on the captaincy of the Wales Golf Women's and Girls teams for the first time.

The break in tradition follows a recent change in the rules dividing professional and amateur golf and is a first for Welsh golf teams.

Former Curtis Cup squad member and Ladies European Tour golfer, Louise Davis-Owen, is the new captain of Wales Women. While former Wales international and LET Access Series player, Jordan Ryan, is captain of the Girls – both having come through the Wales Golf teams as amateurs before turning pro.

Davis-Owen is PGA professional and heavily involved in coaching in North Wales, while Newport’s Ryan has just completed the first year of her PGA qualifications.

They both hope they will bring the perfect blend of amateur and professional experiences to their new roles, benefiting the best up-and-coming female amateur golfers in Wales.

Wales Golf Director of Performance and Pathways, Gareth Jenkins, said: “We are delighted to announce the recruitment of two outstanding volunteers within the female pathway.

“We wish them both huge success and enjoyment in the roles. Wales Golf are grateful and delighted to welcome them as part of the team.”

A wealth of experience

Davis-Owen has represented Wales at all levels, including Home Internationals and European Team Championships, and played for Great Britain and Ireland. She was also a member of the Curtis Cup Squad.

Louise Davis-Owen, former Curtis Cup squad member and Ladies European Tour golfer

This combined with a BA degree in Psychology from Northern Arizona University, a current teaching role and PGA Coach, plus experience of professional golf on the LET, means she brings a multitude of experiences of developing golfers and people.

“I am delighted to take on this role, it is a real honour,” said 46-year-old Davis-Owen. “Having played for Wales for quite a few years, it has always been a role I wanted to do one day.

“I always looked up to our team captains when I was playing and was inspired by them. Now that I have got another level of experience as a pro, I hope that is something I can bring to the current players.

“I know what it feels like to be in those positions on the amateur teams as well as playing golf in professional events, for money and with different pressures.

“I did a psychology degree, so I have always enjoyed the mindset side of things, while my work with the Youth Sport Trust meant working closely with Olympians and Paralympians and seeing how other sports operated, as well as some top coaches.

“I am looking forward to working with Gareth James as the Women’s National Coach - he is someone I know well and I think our roles will complement each other.

“And I am deeply involved in coaching girls in North Wales, so I hope that seeing the Wales captain working with them will help to inspire that next generation as well.”

Ryan also brings a wealth of experience to the role having been in the Wales Golf squad system from the age of 14 until turning professional at 23.

She represented Wales in the Women’s Home Internationals, European Team Championships and The World Amateur Team Championships, as well as representing the Girls' team at the home internationals for two years.

The 26-year-old played on the Ladies European Access Tour for two and half years, along with the Rose Series, and is now undertaking her PGA qualifications.

“I had around nine years of being involved in the academy, Girls and Women’s Wales squads, I am very familiar with what the girls will be going through so I am really looking forward to it,” she said.

“When I heard the R&A had changed the rules about professionals being captain, then I wanted to be involved. I am looking forward to being part of the Wales Golf team.

“Being around the team is something I have missed, however much I enjoy being a professional and the coaching side of it.

“I first played in the Girls Home Internationals when I was 15 and, hopefully, I can use those experiences as I will know to a certain extent what the players are feeling because I have been there.

“Apart from the technical side of things, I understand the strategy, the need to stay calm and avoid frustration.

“While I was playing, Wales teams punched above their weight quite a few times, so I hope to be able to bring that to the Girls team this summer.”

Davis-Owen will captain the Women’s team at the Women’s and Men’s Home Internationals at Murcur Links. Ryan will captain the Girls in Conwy at the Girls and Boys Home Internationals in August.

Read more golf industry news >