Date: June 27, 2011

Lee and Santoso reveal Astor Trophy highlights

Astor Trophy By Minjee Lee The week of the Astor Trophy, our team experienced a whole new level of competition and experienced the harsh conditions of a links style golf course. Lytham greeted us with some unpleasant weather with some rain and gusty winds. Our team went out for our first practice round the next day with determination and demeanour to tackle the tricky conditions that the course could throw at us. The course was in very good shape; the fairways were nice and fairly wide but scattered with small pot bunkers were you were most likely to hit it and the rough was like hay, long and grabby around your club. The weather started to clear up and the sun finally came out. We were all so surprised and happy because it was the first time we had seen it since the start of the trip. We were afraid that we couldn’t see the sun in England before we left but the sun lifted our second practice day and after all we did wear our best uniform that day! That afternoon we had our team photos and the opening ceremony where all teams raised the flag. Since we all wanted to raise the flag, our team manager Matt Cutler came up with the idea that we have a small competition to decide who was going to. So we were all determined to win but Cathleen, Bree and I were knocked out first and then it was between Ash and Emma. In the end, Ash ended up winning and doing the honours for Australia. The night before, the LGU held a welcome dinner for all the players, where we were able to meet new players and have a chat and get to know others. Also team coach Shani Waugh and Matt met the other team managers and coaches and I m sure they had a great time like we all did! Our little mascot, Alex, (Shani&aposs daughter) was adorable and very sweet and was our ray of sunshine through the whole tournament. We were all so happy to see her and she would light up the whole room with her cute little smile! I played foursomes with Emma and Cathleen and I had so much fun playing with them and the level of concentration and competitiveness was amazing. The singles games were all very intense, against every team because everyone wanted a win and everyone was determined to hand in one of the pink match result cards before we left! Overall Australia finished fourth. I think that everyone played at their very best and learnt something new from this great experience! I think everyone had a fantastic time and found out how lucky some people could be around these links courses. By Cathleen Santoso This week the whole team experienced a wide variety of different cultures through foods for breakfast lunch and dinner! Breakfast was served to us at the hotel (for late hitters) or at the golf club. The hotel offered the typical buffet of hot food except a new type of food was encountered which, if you knew was made out of, would definitely not want to have. It&aposs called black pudding – congealed pig&aposs blood, fat and who knows what else! But on the good note their mushrooms were cooked better than ever before, so succulent, juicy and tasty! The continental side of food was delightful. A range of cereals, yogurts and fruit. At the golf course the breakfast was simple – just cereal, pieces of fruit and yogurt. There were also nice muffins and cookies to treat ourselves with. Lunch varied day to day for some as the golf club offered a variety of dishes to select from. Most of us opted for the sandwich and soup each day as we had another 18 to go. Dinner was by far the best meal of the day! On the first night Matt and I took a stroll around the vicinity of our hotel and instantly knew this town had much more to offer than Portrush. We ate at all sorts of restaurants and never at the same twice. Some of us branched out of our comfort zones and tried dishes they haven t ever yet had. This included Japanese tepanyaki – this is where the chefs would entertain us with their fancy utensil tricks and humour while serving our dinner. Definitely a restaurant we all rated well! Indian was another cuisine some of us hadn&apost ever tried before. A few had to go with very mild dishes such as the korma while others were brave enough to try spicier dishes! The nann bread and pappadums were great entrees! An Italian restaurant witnessed many 10/10 ratings including from myself! We all ordered a range of dishes such as the usual spaghetti bolognaise, risotto and other type of pastas. Other nights we ate dishes which weren&apost spectacular but good enough to satisfy us all. Without the assistance of Matt, our manager and Shani Waugh, our coach this trip couldn’t have been successful, we all send our sincere and many thanks to you guys for everything! Thank you so much!