Ballarat Golf Club secures British great to play in pro-am

World Golf Hall of Famer Laura Davies will grace the Ballarat Golf Club course in January’s Australian Ladies Professional Golf pro-am.

England’s Davies is one of the world’s most respected golfers – boasting an outstanding resume.

Davies has won 84 professional titles, including four majors. The 54-year-old turned pro in 1985 and has since compiled a long list of achievements. She was the first non-American to top the Ladies Professional Golf Association Money List – doing so in 1994 – as well as winning the Ladies European Tour Order of Merit a record seven times and was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2015.

Ballarat Golf Club general manager Michael Phillips was elated to hear the news on Wednesday morning.

Laura Davies

Laura Davies

The club has worked closely with the ALPG to secure some big names for the event, but Phillips conceded landing someone of Davies’ ilk exceeded expectation.

“It’s really good, we’re rapt with that,” Phillips said.

“It’s not something we thought would’ve happened.

“This was one of the reasons why we thought this event was really important to us. The women players seem to have a real thing about supporting their events...we always knew we’d get some quality players but for Laura to commit to it is absolutely great.”

Phillips added that the value of gaining such a figure to the tournament was significant. He said it would be huge for attracting people to the club, sparking interest and getting people, women in particular, onto the golf course.

“For us, it was making sure we aligned ourselves with an organisation that really wanted to help us make this successful. And in particular the Australian Ladies Professional Golf Association really are keen to showcase women’s golf – that’s what they’re about.

“It’s not just about getting a few pros down here and watching them hit a few golf balls, it’s about really showing what women’s golf is about so we’re really happy we’ve got that support.”

Davies will be joined by Australian Stacey Peters, originally from Cressy. The 31-year-old has won four major tournaments.

DAVIES’ FACT FILE

Turned pro: 1985

Professional titles: 84

LPGA major championships: Women's PGA (1994, 96), US Open (1987), du Maurier Classic (1996)

Other achievements/awards: World Golf Hall of Fame (2015), All-time leader of most European Tour titles (45), Ladies European Player of the Year (1996, 99), Ladies European Rookie of the Year (1985), Ladies European Tour Order of Merit (1985, 86, 92, 96, 99, 04, 06), First non-American to finish at the top of the LPGA Money List (1994)