Georgia Oboh, a Nigerian golfer, struggled to find role models when she started playing. So, she sought inspiration from other tennis players, including Serena Williams, Naomi Osaka, and others.
CNN Sport spoke out: “Seeing someone like me play at such a high level and still doing so is quite inspiring.”
Naomi Osaka is part of the new generation tennis stars and top-level athletes. She is someone I can really relate to in that she’s trying to make it in all sports.
Oboh, like Osaka and Williams, was a teenager prodigy.
Oboh, just 17 years old, was the first Nigerian to be selected for the Ladies European Tour (LET).
She wants to be able to play in the Olympics and compete for the title of best golfer in the entire world.
She stated that “Being No. She stated that being No. 1 in the world was a long-term goal. “I believe that in the short-term, I would like to play one or two majors this year, increase my rankings, and eventually, the LPGA Tour.
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The route to the top
Georgia was born in Manchester, a northern English city. Her parents were instrumental in teaching her to golf early on.
His grandmother introduced her father to golf. His grandmother introduced Georgia to the game and she soon began playing.
She was a runner, and she played at various golf clubs, learning new skills and experiences that have helped her on her path to becoming a professional.
The 20-year old remembers, “I ended up competing against girls and boys.”
“Eventually, I began to play the US Kids European Championship, then the US Kids World Championship. I won this at age 14. Then I played most of my junior and senior golf in America.
“So I spent a lot my summers and winters overseas. I think that I have a wide range of experience playing in different countries and different weather conditions.
Oboh was 17 years old when she made her last appearance as an amateur golfer, traveling to Buenos Aires, Argentina for the Youth Olympic Games 2018. She finished tied for 22nd place.
Oh, who had a very successful junior career in which she won many trophies, was accepted into qualifying school for LET. She passed the pre-qualifier and had to wait for the actual event to get her professional card.
She recalls that she had a par putt on the last hole which would have placed her on the knife’s edge.
“I made the final putt and it was kinda a waiting game to find out if I would make the cut.” It came down to the last shots of other players, but at the end of it all, I was able to make the cut and get the card.
Oboh became a professional in November 2018. He now plans to appear in at least one major this year, as well as “improving and building my foundations.”
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The game is growing
The LET describes as a “diverse, multicultural membership of 316 professionals golfers representing 36 nations,” but players such as Inci Meshmet have called for more programs to increase diversity.
Oboh said that her main concern was to play the best possible golf. “I have been to many countries around the globe. I don’t let my skin color or gender prevent me from reaching the places I want or need.
Although golf is part and parcel of many cultures around the globe, it is still a new sport in Africa.
South Africa has produced many successful talent such as Ernie Els and Gary Player, Retief Goosen and Charl Schwartzel on the men’s side, and Sally Little for the women’s.
However, because of a lack in “investment and developmental” at the junior level of golf, other African countries are not able to produce the same quality of golfers.
Oboh could have represented the United Kingdom, but she chose Nigeria due to its connection with her heritage. Oboh says that her home course is Ikoyi Club 1938, Lagos, which is also the capital of Nigeria. She has received numerous awards in Nigeria. In her professional debut, she won the Cote D’Ivoire Open her first pro tournament.
Oboh, the first Nigerian to participate on the LET is well aware of the “achievement” that she has achieved by reaching the Tour.
She hopes to be an example and not a flash in the pan for Nigerian Golf.
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“I don’t want to be last Nigerian.” She said that there are some girls waiting in the wings. They will be ready in five to seven years.
“So hopefully it will be a different story by then. It is an accomplishment to be able achieve Tour membership. And I don’t consider myself to be the first person to achieve this, or the first to do it. It will be on my list of accomplishments, but it is not the goal I have for the future.