Golf | Brooke Henderson’s Olympic Dreams

Canadian golfer Brooke Henderson, winner of 10 career titles on the LPGA Tour, always dreamed of going to the Olympics, but it was in women’s hockey that she hoped to be selected.

Posted on July 14. 2021

miguel marois

miguel marois
Press

As a child in Smith Falls, Ontario, she was a junior hockey goalie. And her best friend at the time, Bailey Andison, who was a swimmer, shared her dream.

“When I was little, we followed all the Olympic competitions and we dreamed of being Olympic athletes one day,” Henderson said a few days ago, by video conference.

“I didn’t know how I would get there, but I often dreamed of it… Golf took over quickly and I worked very hard to make a place for myself on the women’s tour and also to be selected on the Canadian team. »

Five years after Rio, Henderson will be back at the Olympics in a few days. And this time he will live the adventure with Andison, since her friend qualified in the Canadian swimming tests. “It’s really special to share this moment, because for her, going to the Games is really the pinnacle of her sport and the fulfillment of her life’s dream.

“We talked about it a few months ago when he asked me if I would go to Tokyo. I replied, “Yes, probably,” before adding that I would surely go if she went too. »

Henderson was just 18 years old in 2016 when he participated in the Rio Games. Close to first place after two laps, the pressure got to her and she settled for a tie for seventh. More mature, self-confident and accustomed to major competitions, the golfer will be one of the favorites in the Olympic tournament.

Reserved for the top 60 of a world ranking, with a limit of 4 players per country, the competition will take place at the Kasumigaseki Country Club, northwest of Tokyo. Henderson will be accompanied by her compatriot Alena Sharp (30Y in Rio), while Corey Conners and Mackenzie Hughes will participate in the men’s tournament.

“I am truly honored to be a part of Team Canada with Alena, Corey and Mackenzie,” said Henderson. I enjoy representing my country and feeling the support of my Canadian family, friends and fans. »

I like the team spirit we feel in these competitions.

Brooke Henderson

The 23-year-old golfer will also have a precious ally in Japan: her sister Brittany, who made a career on the women’s tour and is now the youngest. Her presence will be even more important due to the limitations imposed by the pandemic. In principle, competitors will have to limit their travel between their hotel and the golf club, with little opportunity for sightseeing or attending other competitions.

“Obviously it will be very different this year in Tokyo, with much stricter rules and guidelines due to COVID-19, but it is still a great honor for me to go there. »

his exploits


PHOTO ASHLEY LANDIS, ASSOCIATED PRESS ARCHIVES

Brooke Henderson has ten wins on the LPGA Tour.

  • An important title, the PGA Women’s Championship, in 2016
  • 10 titles on the LPGA Tour, a record for a Canadian golfer
  • In 2018, she became the first Canadian to win the Canadian Women’s Open since Jocelyne Bourassa in 1973.
  • Three-time Canadian Female Athlete of the Year (2015, 2017 and 2018)

His Olympic ambitions


PHOTO KYLE TERADA, USA TODAY SPORTS FILES

“Anything can happen in a four-day tournament,” says Brooke Henderson.

Seventh at the Rio Games in 2016, Henderson will approach the Olympic tournament as the favourite. With one win and five top 10 finishes this season, he is in the top 5 globally. “Anything can happen in a four-day tournament,” the golfer recently insisted via videoconference. “You have to work tirelessly, stay focused and stick to your plan. I am excited to have another chance to be at the Games and by playing a little better I hope I can join the fight for the podium. »

his rivals


PHOTO CHRIS CARLSON, ASSOCIATED PRESS ARCHIVES

inbee park

The women’s Olympic golf tournament, unlike the men’s, will bring together almost all of the world’s elite. Korea’s Inbee Park, New Zealand’s Lydia Ko and China’s Shanshan Feng, the three medalists from the 2016 Games, are still there, while Americans Nelly and Jessica Korda, Lexi Thompson and Danielle Kang, Koreans Jin Young Ko, Sei Young Kim and Hyo Joo Kim, or the Japanese Nasa Hataoka are just some of the favorites.

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