Golf

Stephanie Meadow secures LPGA Tour Card

Tony McGee

After a traumatic few years, Stephanie Meadow has regained her LPGA Tour Card and is set to, once again, mix it with the top stars.

This year the former Royal Portrush amateur international recorded 12 top-25 finishes, including a win and eight top-10 results.

The most recent came this week at Alaqua Country Club where Meadow tied for eighth position at eight-under-par, overall, in the IOA Golf Classic. Her performance was highlighted by a bogey-free four-under 67 final round.

“It has been a lot of hard work and realising that it has paid off is crazy,” said Stephanie (26). “You never quite know and don’t want to get too excited. It’s really cool, really cool.”

She added: “I think my late dad would be very proud. It would have been his 67th birthday a couple weeks ago,” she reflected.

“I think that’s a pretty awesome birthday present. I’m just really happy that I get a second chance because I came down here and had to work my way back.”

When her dad fell ill with cancer, a few of years ago, she took time off her tour preparations to be with him and her mother, after the family had moved from Jordanstown to North Carolina in support of their daughter's bid to become a professional player.

Meadow lost her LPGA Tour membership for the 2018 season after suffering a stress fracture in her lower back last year. When she was set to take a medical exemption, it was too late to regain even partial status.

In her first start as a professional, Meadow finished third at the 2014 US Women’s Open. That was before she took time out to be with her sick father, who was her regular caddie as an amateur.

Having spent this year on the Symetra Tour to build her strength, she is right on track to showcase that same form on the big stage once again.

“I won’t be a rookie and I have already learned a lot of things from being out there before,” said the former British Amateur champion and Irish International. She represented Ireland at the Rio Olympics.

“I’m hoping I can use my previous experience on the US Tour to help me perform to my ultimate potential next year. I’ve been through a lot the last few years and I’m so glad I have such outstanding support from Investec, Ireland Golf, my family and boyfriend. I wouldn’t have been able to accomplish this without them,” stressed Stephanie.

 

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