Swinging for a win

2017-10-31 06:01
Traigh Pathon needs help to attend internation golf tournament.

Traigh Pathon needs help to attend internation golf tournament.

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A Grade 1 learner from Wynberg Boys’ Junior School is teeing it off like a pro.

Traigh Hunter Pathon from Athlone hit his first ball when he was 14-months-old and since then he has grown and improved his skills to be a professional player.

When he was 18-months-old he was in a Pampers advert for his golf stance. Now at only seven he is travelling the world and competing. His mother Tiara says when Traigh was born we lived with her mother and stepdad in Sybrand Park which was on the door step of Rondebosch Golf Course. “My parents loved the game and played golf all the time. So Traigh practically learnt to crawl at the course and took his first steps and all he saw and knew was golf. Sadly my stepdad passed away before Traigh took up the sport – we see a lot of him in Traigh. His dad also started playing golf and has been the most recent influence in his life. They love watching all golf competitions and highlights on TV. It’s their daily dose of happiness,” she says.

When his parents saw his love for golf, they then started taking him to hit balls at Vodacom Driving Range in Wynberg and he attended a group class with Kurt Stripp every other Saturday morning. “When he was four-years-old we entered him in his first SA kids golf competition. He entered the five to six age category and he came in third place. He has come first in six competitions, second in five competitions, third place in four competitions and fourth in three competitions – these are local competitions played with other boys in the Western Cape. Currently he is playing in seven to eight years. Traigh recently played in his first big tournament at San Lameer Golf Course in Durban. A total of 140 children entered the competition. 40 where international,” says Tiara.

It was a three day competition where they played nine holes daily. He also had a qualifying score over the three days which got him entrance into four international tournaments.

In December he is going to Malaysia Kids Open from 12 to 15 December. 

In January he is competing in the Australian Kids Open, in August he is taking part in the US Kids Open and in May the European Kids Open.

His parents have started a Back-a-buddy account for Traigh so he has the opportunity to play in these competitions and keep training to ensure he places in them.

“Entrance to the competitions is around R4 500. We need flights and accommodation. We are asking for help from anyone that can help us so that he will be able to attend these competitions. It will mean so much to him and we don’t want him to miss any of them,” says Tiara.

Traigh trains with SA Golf Institute twice a week with his coach Keagan Beyer. His father is his caddy. He is the youngest member at Royal Cape Golf Club in Ottery, the oldest golf course in South Africa and at the River Club in Observatory.

Though golf is his life he is a typical seven-year-old. He loves all things adventurous. He loves motor GP, playing marbles and on his play station and reading books, especially Dr Seuss.

Tiara says as parents they are extremely proud of him. “He amazes us at every tournament. In Durban he played remarkably. He was the tiniest out of 14 boys, most of them were double his size. So they had the upper hand on how far they can hit the ball. He just out played them. But we still want him to have fun and enjoy the game so we try and keep it as fun as possible and let him be a normal kid so he doesn’t burn out,” says ­Tiara.

To help Traigh attend his tournaments donate on https://www.backabuddy.co.za/champion/project/help-traigh-get-to-africa-kids-open-us-k

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