Sally Watson was so tired after winning her 2014 Ladies European Tour card that last year’s pre-season was almost non-existent.
Watch out in 2015.
The second-year pro has escaped the Scottish winter to hone her game and took full toll today to lead the Women’s Victorian Open after round one at Thirteenth Beach Golf Links.
As the wind whipped up, Watson turned in a rare bogey-free round to start her competitive season in style with a four-under-par 69 on the Creek Course.
“It’s kinda nice. And I really didn’t know what to expect either because I hadn’t played that golf course before,” the Stanford graduate said.
“I only arrived on Monday night from Scotland, played the 7.45 pro-am on Tuesday which was a nice little start with like four hours sleep!
“So obviously I was exhausted (on Wednesday), so I just decided to walk the course instead of playing it which happened to work out well – so maybe I should do that more often.
“I normally walk courses if I can before a practice round anyway because I think it helps you get a good plan. The thing I was worried about was more around the green because I hadn’t had a chance to hit any of the shots, but luckily today I didn’t miss too many.”
Watson didn’t havea bogey-free round all year in her rookie season, yet still managed to finish 23rd on the LET order of merit.
But she said much of her season had been spent learning both courses and countries she’d never previously visited.
“I’m feeling a lot more prepared this year – tour school is a really intense process on the LET, and it doesn’t finish until right before Christmas and after that you want to put the clubs away for a few weeks. Last year I flew out to Australia on January 17 with about four days’ practise in Scotland and I don’t know how much you can call that practice when it’s freezing,” she joked.
“So I didn’t really have a pre-season to prepare myself, but this year I had a nice three-week spell in Florida to get my game back in shape. The work seems to be paying off, which is nice.
“But to be honest, it’s the first round and with my preparation limited, today could have been hit or miss and luckily for me it worked out.
“This event was more for me to get into the swing of things … but it’s nice to have a first round and you need it to hold up if you’re going to have a successful season.”